MSO10209 - The Linton Road, Exmoor (Monument)


A hollow way that was orginally a pre enclosure road, marked "The Linton Road" on the 1815 enclosure map.

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Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

The course of a preenclosure road within Exmoor Forest was located and recorded in the form of a poorly defined hollow way along the west flank of Exe Plain. The 1815 enclosure map of the Forest marks this as ""The Linton Road"" [1]. However, on the ground the north end of its course differs from that mapped, fading out in the direction of a pair of slate stone gateposts approximately 1.5 metres high defining a gateway in the Forest boundary wall against Cheriton Ridge. This gap appears to be original and the road would thus seem to be one of those required to be let through the enclosure wall as a condition of its construction. A gully, now some 3 metres deep, inside the gateway must, however, have rendered it obsolete long ago. The fine gateposts are in some danger of falling into this gully. The 19th Century road, which replaced this route, lies along the western side of the Hoaroak Valley, whilst the present road completed in the 1930s lies some way to the east, leading onto Brendon Common. [1] A track, known as ‘The Linton Road’ in the early 19th Century crosses Exe Plain. It appears as a substantial bank, 2 metres wide, 1 metre high, with flanking ditches, 1 metre wide, 1 metre deep. At SS 74901 42664 the feature divides into two. The south track runs in the direction of Hoar Oak, the north leads to the north of a way through the 19th century boundary bank which is marked by two stone gateposts. [2] The 1818 map [3] (which may be the map referred to by [1]) shows ""No 6 The Linton Road"" beginning at the modern B3358 just to the east of Westgate Plantation, at c.SS 7641 3926. It headed in a straight line in a northwesterly direction to Exe Head, at which point it forded the watercourse. It then continued broadly northnorthwest along the eastern ridge overlooking Hoaroak Water, before reaching the edge of the Exe Plain. A small section of the land on the southern side of the Devon/Somerset County border is allotted to ""The Brendon Proprieters"" at c. SS 7511 4289, and the road crosses into this section but follows this boundary northwest until it exits Somerset just to the east of the Hoar Oak Tree (this is the area where the modifications suggested by [1] to divert the route through gate piers appears to have taken place). The route then crosses the Hoaroak Water, heading up to Gammons Corner, skirting below the Hoar Oak Inclosure and then heading northwest across Furzehill Common, at which point it is no longer mapped. N.B. It is not clear how much of this routeway was built, was preexisting or has since been removed. The southernmost section is not shown on the 25 inch 1st Edition Ordnance Survey map [4] and would have been in the way of many of the Knights' groundworks, such as the Pinkery Canal (MSO6847) where it crosses Dure Down. The fork mentioned by [2] is slightly to the south of where the routeway seen on the ground appears to diverge from the route shown on the 1818 map, at c. SS 7494 4280. [3-5]

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1>XY Article in serial: Preece, A.. 1993. in Webster, CJ and Croft, RA "Somerset Archaeology 1993". Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. 137. 151. [Mapped feature: #34315 ]
  • <2> Report: Riley, H.. 2013. Hoaroak Valley: Historic landscape survey and analysis. 32.
  • <3>XY Map: Kelsey, F.J.. 1818. The Map Referred to in the annexed Award [Exmoor Inclosure Award]. 4 inches : 1 mile. Pen and Ink. [Mapped features: #46723 ; #46724 ]
  • <4> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <5> Verbal communication: Various. 1993-. Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Team staff comments. Catherine Dove, 7 October 2020.



Grid reference Centred SS 7521 4149 (2411m by 4451m)
Map sheet SS74SE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (2)

Related Events/Activities (1)

External Links (0)

Other Statuses/References

  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 15754

Record last edited

Mar 17 2021 1:09PM


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