MSO7884 - Anglo-Saxon buildings in Porlock area (Monument)


Building remains were once thought to be remnants of the town destroyed in a raid of 1052. It is not clear where they were situated.

Please read the Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record .

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status

Full Description

In the third invation, at Porlock, "the Danes in the night, leaving their Shipps on the shore, plundered and burnt the said Towne, and other Places adjoyning, but were all slain by a partie of the King's Armie, which was desighned for the defence of that Coast, and the present Inhabitants of that Towne speke traditionallie thereof to this day, and if they were silent, the burnt Foundation Stones of some of the antcient Houses would proclaim the truth thereof." [1] Porlock (SS 88 46) is supposed to have been sacked by Harold, son of the Earl of Kent, and a raiding party from Ireland about midsummer 1052. "The inhabitants preserve the memory of the above occurrences to this day; and no longer ago than the beginning of this century, they could point out the burnt foundation stones of some of the ancient houses, and the vestiges of what had once been, in the vulgar opinion, an extensive and magnificent city" [3]. [1-3] No precise grid reference has been provided for this entry and so the mapping is approximate. [4] A reference to the event in 1052 is made in the Saxon Chronicle. [5] This record was enhanced as part of the National Record of the Historic Environment to Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Record data transfer project. [6]

Sources/Archives (6)

  • <1> Monograph: Hearne, T.. 1725. Peter Langtoft's Chronicle, (as illustrated and improv'd by Robert of Brunne) from the death of Cadwalader to the end of K. Edward the First's reign.. p 466.
  • <2> Monograph: Collinson, J.. 1791 (2006). The History and Antiquities of Somerset. Archive CD Books Ltd. Volume 2, 36.
  • <3> Map: Ordnance Survey Archaeology Division. 1986. SS84NE. 18.
  • <4> Verbal communication: Various. 1993-. Exmoor National Park Historic Environment Team staff comments.
  • <5> Article in serial: Howes, J.G.. 1889. Notes on Exford. Proceedings of the Somerset Archaeological and Natural History Society. 35. 2. p43.
  • <6> Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 35874, Extant 7 February 2022.

External Links (1)

Other Statuses/References

  • Coastal Risk 2014: Flood Zone 2 fluvial
  • Coastal Risk 2016: Flood Zone 2 fluvial
  • Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO12266
  • Local List Status (Unassessed)
  • National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 NE18
  • NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 35874
  • Somerset SMR PRN: 35335



Grid reference SS 88 46 (point) Estimated from sources
Map sheet SS84NE

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (1)

Related Events/Activities (1)

Record last edited

Feb 7 2022 2:21PM


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