MSO6937 - Post-medieval quarrying on Great Woolcombe (Monument)


An area of shallow surface quarrying and a spoil mound are visible as earthworks on aerial photographs taken in 1947. The stone was most likely used to build field walls in the surrounding area.

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Type and Period (2)

Protected Status

  • None recorded

Full Description

An area of shallow surface quarrying or mineral extraction is visible as a series of earthworks on the northwestern corner of Great Woolcombe, Exmoor. Centred at approximately SS 7708 3720 and measuring some 70 metres by 14 metres, the earthworks comprise amorphous scoops 0.6 metres deep. A U-shaped mound (which was previously thought to be circular) is presumably a spoil mound from these quarries. The stone was most likely used to build the field walls. Burton refers to "ancient" miners working the surface for iron ore at this location; the term "ancients" was very often used to refer to medieval and early post-medieval iron mining (as at Roman Lode, Burcombe). In the mid 19th Century, two trenches were cut nearby to establish the limit of the lodes of Blue Gate Iron Mine, and the east-west alignment of workings suggest that iron ore may well have been extracted here. [1-6] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [7]

Sources/Archives (7)

  • <1> Survey: Western Archaeological Trust. 1980s. Exmoor Aerial Photograph Survey. 7737.
  • <2> Aerial photograph: Aerial photograph reference number . LHL CPE/UK/1980 4450 (April 1947).
  • <3> Unpublished document: Wilson-North, R.. Various. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 27 October 1994.
  • <4> Aerial photograph: Various. Various. Vertical Aerial Photograph. RAF CPE/UK/2082 4048-49 (19 May 1947).
  • <5> Monograph: Burton, R.A.. 1989. The Heritage of Exmoor. Roger A. Burton. 143.
  • <6>XY Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 73 NE. MD002190. [Mapped feature: #40709 ]
  • <7> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1099586, Extant 22 November 2021.



Grid reference Centred SS 7706 3718 (95m by 35m)
Map sheet SS73NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO601
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO11054
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 73 NE20
  • National Park
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1099586
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 33193

Record last edited

Nov 22 2021 3:37PM


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