MSO6303 - Post-medieval water meadow at Sloe Combe (Monument)
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Type and Period (1)
- None recorded
A post-medieval water meadow system, known locally as a catchwater meadow, is visible on aerial photographs as a series of earthworks at Sloe Combe, Wootton Courtenay. Centred at approximately SS 958 435, three gutters are visible located on a steep north-east facing slope and following the contours of the slope. A small stream is visible west of the gutters, which most likely supplied water to the system. This system does not appear to be connected to any local farmyards, suggesting that this was a detached system which only distributed water to the fields and not liquid manure or other fertilisers. 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. [1-5] It may be associated with the nearby deserted farmstead (MSO6250). 
- <1> SEM6918 Report: Francis, P.T.H.. 1984. A Survey and Description of the "Catch Meadow" Irrigation Systems Found in the Exmoor Region of West Somerset.
- <2> SSO289 Aerial photograph: 1947. LHL CPE/UK/1980. 3195.
- <3> SMO4068 Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. NMR OS/70380 163-64 (23 September 1970).
- <4> SEM7396 Monograph: Cook, H. + Williamson, T.. 2007. Water Meadows: History, Ecology and Conservation. Windgather Press. 1st Edition. 1-7, 28-9.
- <5>XY SMO7570 Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 94 SE. MD002187. [Mapped feature: #40020 ]
- <6> SEM8675 Verbal communication: Various. 1900-. Somerset County Council staff comments. E Dennison, 10 July 1984.
|Grid reference||Centred SS 958 434 (264m by 147m)|
|Civil Parish||WOOTTON COURTENAY, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
Related Monuments/Buildings (1)
Related Events/Activities (0)
External Links (1)
- http://www.pastscape.org.uk/hob.aspx?hob_id=1119602 (Original Monarch entry: 1119602)
- Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO707
- Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO11945
- National Monuments Record reference: SS 94 SE77
- Pastscape HOBID (was Monarch UID): 1119602
- Somerset SMR PRN (Somerset): 34526
Record last edited
Jan 15 2020 5:05PM
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