MSO6808 - Sloley (or Slowly) Stone at Mole's Chamber (Monument)


An inscribed boundary stone, 1.34 metres high, marking the Devon/Somerset county boundary and the boundary of Exmoor Forest. Its inscription is dated 1742. It has also been named the Hore Stone, the Long Stone and the Lew Combe Stone.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

A boundary stone is marked as 'B.S.' on the 1st and 2nd Edition Ordnance Survey maps. [1-2] (SS 7175 3962) Sloley Stone (BS) (NAT). [3] The stone marked on the Ordnance Survey map as Sloley Stones is also called the Hore Stone, the Long Stone and the Lew Combe Stone. On its north face is cut "Earl Fortescue" and on another face "Christian Slowley Lady of the Manor of Gratton, 1742". The stone is mentioned in a lawsuit of 1678 and, as the Long Stone or Lew Comb Stone, in a perambulation of 1815. [4] SS 7177 3937. A boundary stone set in a steep slope to the north side of the track leading to the site of the old Acland Arms at Mole's Chamber. It marks the position of the Devon/Somerset County Boundary which is coincident here with the western boundary of the old Forest of Exmoor and, according to Burton [5]: "the boundaries of High Bray and Gratton Commons where they meet the Forest boundary". The stone is an earthfast carved rectangular upright grey slab with a curved top (reminiscent of a grave stone). It is 1.34 metres high, 0.56 metres wide and 0.14 metres thick. Its northwest face bares the much eroded inscription "Christian Slowly [sic] Lady of the Manor of Gratton" and the date 1742. Its southeastern face has a similarly eroded inscription "William.....Esquire Lord of ye Manor of High Bray" also dated 1742. [Burton [5] and MacDermot [4] state it is William Longe Oxenham but this cannot be discerned now.] The northeastern edge of the stone has an Ordnance Survey Bench Mark engraved on it. This stone is shown unnamed but annotated "B.S." on the 1890 Ordnance Survey map [1]. On the same map the name Sloley Stone was incorrectly applied to a stone (MSO7145) at SS 7175 3962 some 245 metres to the north. The current 1:10,000 [6] and 1:25,000 [7] Ordnance Survey maps are now marked Sloley Stone (BS). Burton [5] and MacDermot [4] state that the spelling is Slowley, however the engraving does not have a letter 'e'. Perhaps, according to the actual inscription on the stone it should correctly be called Slowly Stone?. [9] "Sloley Stone (BS)" is marked on 2020 MasterMap data. [10]

Sources/Archives (10)

  • <1>XY Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500. 1890 (Surveyed 1888), Somerset 44(7). [Mapped feature: #38039 ]
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1902-1907. County Series, 2nd Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1962. 6 Inch Map: 1962. 1:10560.
  • <4> Monograph: MacDermot, E.T.. 1973. The History of the Forest of Exmoor. David and Charles Limited. Revised Edition. 113, 354, 421, 424, 425, Map between 181-182.
  • <5> Monograph: Burton, R.A.. 1989. The Heritage of Exmoor. Roger A. Burton. P.162.
  • <6> Map: Ordnance Survey. 1980. 1:10000 Map, 1980. 1:10000.
  • <7> Map: Ordnance Survey. Explorer Map. Outdoor Leisure Map 9, Exmoor. 1:25,000. 1993, Exmoor West.
  • <9> Unpublished document: Sainsbury, I.S.S. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 2 August 1995.
  • <10> Map: Ordnance Survey. 2020. MasterMap data. 1:2,500.
  • <11> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35058, Extant 24 November 2021.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Devon SMR Monument ID: 32763
  • Devon SMR: SS73NW/520
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE1203
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MDE21223
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO12497
  • Local List Status (Unassessed)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 73 NW17
  • National Park: Exmoor National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35058
  • Somerset SMR PRN (Somerset): 33188
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 35699



Grid reference SS 7177 3937 (point) Estimated from sources
Map sheet SS73NW

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

Record last edited

Nov 24 2021 2:26PM


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