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Dewerstone Settlement

Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork

<b>Dewerstone Settlement</b>Posted by LubinImage © Peter Castle ©
Nearest Town:Plympton (7km SSE)
OS Ref (GB):   SX539641 / Sheet: 201
Latitude:50° 27' 28.37" N
Longitude:   4° 3' 30.56" W

Added by pure joy

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<b>Dewerstone Settlement</b>Posted by Lubin <b>Dewerstone Settlement</b>Posted by Lubin <b>Dewerstone Settlement</b>Posted by Lubin <b>Dewerstone Settlement</b>Posted by pure joy


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Dewerstone Settlement - 21.6.2004

I knew nothing about this site except for what I could see on the map, which showed a semi circular earthwork on top of the hill, and a homestead within the enclosed area.

The whole area is National Trust land so it is open access. The settlement can be approached over Wigford Down (a much flatter route), or from the river valley below. Many walkers in the area park at Shaugh Bridge. Or Cadover Bridge, but this is further away. There is no vehicular access into the actual National Trust land (e.g. from Goodameavy).

There isn't much to see though, especially with the dense bracken. The paths are cleared of bracken but not the rest of the hill top. Presumably the semi circular earthwork would have cut the hill off from the rest of the downs.

The views from the nearby Dewerstone Rocks are stunning. But please treat the rocks below with care; two rock climbers died on them last year.
pure joy Posted by pure joy
4th July 2004ce


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Well this is really ghastly, I'm afraid. account [of this] appeared in a Devonshire newspaper one day last spring, on the Dartmoor, where the foaming river Plym rushes through a ravine under the tall cliffs of the Dewerstone. This wild spot is haunted by the Black Huntsman, who with his "Wish-hounds" careers over the waste at night. A story is told of this phantom that a farmer, riding across the moor by night, encountered the Black Hunter, and being flushed with ale, shouted to him "Give us a share of your game!" The Huntsman thereupon threw him something that he supposed might be a fawn, which he caught and carried in his arms till he reached his home, one of the old moorland farms. There arrived, he shouted, and a man came out with a lantern. "Bad news, master," said the man; "you've had a loss since you went out this morning." "But I have gained something," answered the farmer, and getting down brought what he had carried to the lantern, and beheld---his own dead child! During the day his only little one had died.
Folklore Parallels and Coincidences
M. J. Walhouse
Folklore, Vol. 8, No. 3. (Sep., 1897), pp. 196-202.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
4th October 2006ce

The Dewerstone is a lofty mass of rock rising above the bed of the Plym, on the southern edge of Dartmoor. During a deep snow, the traces of a naked human foot and of a cloven hoof were found ascending to the highest point. The valley below is haunted by a black headless dog.
From Notes and Queries 61 (December 1850, online at Project Gutenberg.
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
5th April 2006ce

Not that I want to put you off visiting Dewerstone, but Hunt* mentions that the Dewerstone valley below is a favourite midnight meeting place for the headless spectral Wish Hounds. He calls them "the wish or wisked hounds of Dartmoor," also the "yell-hounds," and the "yeth-hounds."

Pure Joy mentions that rock climbers have died here - perhaps many people have made fatal errors over the years, because it is said the hounds lure unwary (or inquisitive) travellers over the edge to their deaths.

*Popular Romances of the West of England, 1865.

(Btw, the Magic record considers the enclosures themselves to be Neolithic, with the hut circles later Bronze Age additions.)
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
27th July 2005ce