MSO7986 - 20th Century boathouse at Ashley Combe (Monument)
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Type and Period (2)
An ornamental boat house is built into the bottom of the cliffs north of Ashley Combe, at SS 8556 4835. The building is 12 metres long and 5 metres wide. It has two storeys; the roof and some of the back of the upper floor are missing or obscured by landslips. The ground floor consists of two low interconnecting arches. The main arch, accessed from the beach, has 4 recessed niches in its side and end walls. The other arch has one recessed niche. It leads to a small cell, lit by a cruciform window with brick voussoirs. This in turn leads up to the first floor via stone steps. The upper floor is divided into two rooms. The eastern one has a fireplace and bread oven on its east wall. Each of the rooms had a window looking over the sea. The building was surveyed at 1:100 as part of the RCHME Exmoor Project. [1-3] The building was known as Rockford Cottage and was a boathouse with access through the woods to Ashley Combe.  It is not marked on the 1st edition 25 inch map but is shown on the current 1:2500 map. [5,6] The boathouse also does not appear on the 2nd Edition Ordnance Survey map and must also post date this document.  A rapid reconnaissance of the building suggests it may incorporate and reuse the site of an earlier limekiln, of which there are several known along the Exmoor coast, all fed with limestone and coal brought in by boat. At the time of visit, the recessed niche in the rear wall of the main ground-floor tunnel was heavily obscured by shingle thrown up by storms, but incorporates within its head a rectangular opening reminiscent of the draw or poking hole in the draw arch of a limekiln. A rectangular area in front of the building appears to be have been cleared of shingle to create a sandy beaching area or slipway (see MMO1614).  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> SEM341000 Technical drawing: Wilson-North, R. and Bradbeer, C.. 1998. Rockford Cottage/ink Survey. Permatrace. Pen and Ink.
- <2> SEM341001 Technical drawing: Wilson-North, R. and Riley, H.. 1998. Rockford Cottage.
- <3> SMO7322 Unpublished document: Riley, H.. Field Investigators Comments. RCHME Field Investigation, 1998.
- <4> SEM7093 Monograph: Corner, Dennis. 1992. Porlock in Those Days. Exmoor Books. P. 61.
- <5> SEM6703 Map: Ordnance Survey. 1868-1901. County Series; 1st Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500. 1890, Somerset Sheet 33(4).
- <6> SEM7722 Map: Ordnance Survey. 1973. 1:2500. 1:25,000.
- <7> SEM7190 Map: Ordnance Survey. 1902-1907. County Series, 2nd Edition 25 Inch Map. 1:2500.
- <8> SEM7758 Unpublished document: Various. 1999-. English Heritage/Historic England Field Investigator's Comments. Marcus Jecock, HE Field Investigation, 18 September 2016.
- <9> SEM7987 Digital archive: Historic England. Various. National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE) entry. 1158683, Updated 14 February 2022.
|Grid reference||Centred SS 8555 4834 (16m by 10m) Historic mapping|
|Civil Parish||PORLOCK, WEST SOMERSET, SOMERSET|
Related Monuments/Buildings (2)
Related Events/Activities (2)
External Links (1)
- http://www.pastscape.org.uk/hob.aspx?hob_id=1158683 (Original Monarch entry: 1158683)
- Exmoor National Park HER Number (now deleted): MSO10295
- National Monuments Record reference: SS 84 NE79
- National Park: Exmoor National Park
- NRHE HOB UID (Pastscape): 1158683
- Shoreline Management Plan 2 (0-20)
- Somerset SMR PRN: 18081
Record last edited
Feb 14 2022 10:21PM
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