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..............they are everywhere, stone-faced and entwined with tree roots, or standing bare and stern-faced against the wind. Some date back to prehistory, others to Medieval times. A close look will show the skill and craftsmanship involved. Take the time to notice.
Updated Apr 4, 2011
Grimspound can be seen in its entirety from the adjacent Hookney Tor and a photograph taken from this location is shown in the photo above, a high resolution image being available by clicking on it. (You will have to disable Internet Explorer's annoying image resizing 'feature' to see it at full size, however.) It is advisable to choose a relatively clear day for this climb as moorland mist and fog frequently obliterates the view of the site from this altitude. The site itself consists essentially of a walled enclosure of a little over four acres in area containing the remains of many dwellings which take the form of circles of granite boulders known as hut circles or round houses. The entire site measures at the widest points 145 yards by 170 yards and nestles between the high points of Hookney Tor and Hameldown Tor at a height of about 1,500 feet above sea level. From the defensive point of view it is less than ideally placed as it is overlooked from both of the neighbouring hills and any invading force would have a significant advantage. It would therefore be reasonable to assume that it was not built as a fortification of any type but far more likely to have been the home of a farming community.
The name 'Grimspound' was first suggested for this location and published as such by the Reverend Richard Polwhele in 1797, this name having since been widely accepted. It is generally regarded as having been built in the middle bronze age, about 3,000 years ago and a few artifacts, notably pottery, have been recovered dating from this period which substantiate this. However, the site may well have been in use in much earlier times and the inhabitants normally credited with its construction may simply have moved in to an existing site.
Written Nov 12, 2006
Just behind Haytor on the south of Dartmoor, is this gorgeous hidden little granite quarry, bits of rusted equipment dotted around which adds a "days gone by" atmosphere. There is also a small lake in the centre of the quarry, which was frozen over on the occassion we visited in the photo.
I don't think too many people know about this place, I have never seen anyone else here. There used to be a carved granite tramway track opened in 1820, to here to Stover Canal at Ventiford 10 miles away to transport the granite. It is still possible today to see the track shapes leading away from the quarry.
Updated Dec 22, 2004