MSO7047 - Post-medieval water meadow at Long Combe (Monument)
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Type and Period (1)
A contour leat on the lower south side of Long Combe taps the river at the boundary between Larkbarrow and Tom's Hill farms at its eastern end. In the west it terminates at a field boundary. The channel is about 0.5 metres wide and 0.2 metres deep with a retaining bank 1.3 metres wide. It crosses a quarry at SS 8115 4277.  It appears to join the water meadow system at Long Combe (MSO7028). (4) A water channel of a type known as a contour leat or gutter is visible on aerial photographs as an earthwork on the north facing slopes of Long Combe, roughly 250 metres to the south of Tom's Farm, centred on circa SS 8114 4279. The gutter taps Long Combe at the field boundary between the Larkbarrow and Tom's Hill estates and terminates at a field boundary some 650 metres to the northwest. With a second, somewhat slighter gutter immediately to the south, the channel probably acted as a simple catchwork or field gutter water meadow for the Tom's Hill farm estate. Such catchwork systems are usually found on steep combe sides and are designed to irrigate pasture by diverting water from a spring or stream along the valley sides via one or more channels or gutters. When irrigation was required the gutters were blocked, causing water to overflow, thereby irrigating the slopes. This film of water prevented the ground freezing during the winter and raised the temperature of the grass in the spring, thereby encouraging early growth, particularly important during the hungry gap of March and April. [5-7] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. 
- <1> SMO5308 Verbal communication: Various. Various. Oral Information. McDonnell, R. 05/07/1982.
- <2> SSO856 Article in serial: Burrow, I., Minnitt, S. and Murless, B.. 1982. Somerset Archaeology 1981. Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. 126. 69-91. P.83.
- <3> SEM7060 Report: McDonnell, R.. 1985. Recommendations for the Management of Archaeological Sites in the Exmoor National Park at Warren, Pinford, Tom's Hill and Hayes Allotment. P.67 (site 84).
- <4> SEM8675 Verbal communication: Various. 1900-. Somerset County Council / South West Heritage Trust staff comments. Chris Webster, 11 September 2002.
- <5> SEM6707 Aerial photograph: Royal Air Force. 1946 -1948. Vertical Aerial Photography. RAF CPE/UK/1980 (F20) 3066-7 (11 April 1947).
- <6> SEM7396 Monograph: Cook, H. + Williamson, T.. 2007. Water Meadows: History, Ecology and Conservation. Windgather Press. 1st Edition. 1-7, 28-9.
- <7>XY SMO7567 Archive: 2007-2009. Exmoor National Park NMP: SS 84 SW. MD002184. [Mapped feature: #47333 ]
- <8> SEM7987 Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 975038, Extant 6 July 2021.
|Grid reference||Centred SS 8107 4274 (557m by 259m)|
|Civil Parish||EXMOOR, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
Related Monuments/Buildings (6)
- Part of: 19th Century water meadow at Larkbarrow (Monument) (MSO7028)
- Related to: 19th Century leat north of Tom's Hill Farm (Monument) (MMO2543)
- Related to: 19th Century leat on Tom's Hill (Monument) (MSO7049)
- Related to: Leat, South of Tom's Hill Farm (Monument) (MMO2544)
- Related to: Post-medieval contour leat above Long Combe (Monument) (MSO7046)
- Related to: Post-medieval contour leat at Long Combe (Monument) (MSO7048)
Related Events/Activities (2)
External Links (1)
- http://www.pastscape.org.uk/hob.aspx?hob_id=975038 (Pastscape entry: 975038)
- Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MMO422
- Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO11006
- National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 SW96
- National Park: Exmoor National Park
- NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 975038
- Somerset SMR PRN: 33145
Record last edited
Jul 6 2021 12:12PM
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