MMO3653 - Post-medieval water meadow south of Eyreland (Monument)


A post medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs taken in 1947 as a series of earthworks.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A post-medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks south of the deserted settlement of Eyreland, Withycombe (see MSO8642). Centred at approximately ST 0076 3795, four gutters are visible running east-west along the contours of a south facing slope below Eyreland. They were probably fed from the spring south of Eyreland, and may have been connected to the farmyard, thus distributing liquid manure to the fields as fertiliser, in addition to water. [1] Catchwater meadows used a series of approximately parallel gutters to distribute flowing water evenly over the surface of the meadow in order to prevent freezing in winter and encourage early growth in spring, thereby providing extra feed for livestock. Most catchwater meadows are believed to date to the post-medieval period, although it is possible that they were first developed in the medieval period. [2]

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. RAF CPE/UK/1980 3285-86 11-APR-1947.
  • <2> Monograph: Cook, H. + Williamson, T.. 2007. Water Meadows: History, Ecology and Conservation. Windgather Press. 1st Edition. 1-7, 28-9.
  • <3> Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: ST 03 NW. MD002177.



Grid reference Centred ST 0077 3795 (156m by 153m) (Aerial Survey)
Map sheet ST03NW

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (0)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • National Monuments Record reference: ST 03 NW98
  • Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 1499326

Record last edited

Mar 28 2018 1:39PM


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