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Dartmoor Places

Hisley Wood

Hisley Wood

‘The breeze was oozing through the network of boughs as through a strainer; the trunks and larger branches stood against the light of the sky in the forms of sentinels, giant candelabra, pikes, halberds, lances, and whatever else the fancy chose to make of them.’ Thomas Hardy – The Woodlanders. …

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High Willhays

High Willhays

It would be remiss not to include ‘The Roof of Devon’ in the folklore and legends section of Dartmoor. Whilst there is no tale or story to tell it surely goes down in Dartmoor’s geographical ‘spectaculars’. The Roof of Devon stands at an altitude of 621 metres which makes it …

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Heath Stone

Heath Stone

Just beside the road that leads into Fernworthy Plantation stands a lone inconspicuous stone called ‘The Heathstone’. This large boulder bears a modern description that detracts from its undoubted antiquity and one might postulate it is another example of a Christianised pagan stone. The stone is mentioned in both the …

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Hare Tor

Hare Tor

“So we ascend Hare Tor, of shape more conical than most of the Dartmoor heights. I have remarked that on the western side the outline bears a strong resemblance to the animal in its couchant form, which probably accounts for its name. I have heard it suggested that this tor …

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Hangingstone Hill

Hangingstone Hill

HANGINGSTONE HILL – if you are expecting grizzly tales of miscreants jiggling around on the end of a rope then please accept my apologies for there are none. Granted there is a large stone near the summit and it is this from whence the hill takes its modern name. As …

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Hangingstone, The

Hangingstone, The

Many years ago there was a time when it was almost impossible to earn enough money to put food on the family table. In the long cold winter months it was even harder as there were no fruits, berries or nuts in the hedgerows. Is it therefore surprising that when …

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Halstock Chapel

Halstock Chapel

In the Perambulation of 1240 the following directions appear: ‘et inde linealiter usque ad vadum proximum in orientali parte capelle Sancti Michaelis … and thence in line to the next ford east of the chapel of St. Michael of Halgestoke.’ This is the first documented evidence of a chapel at …

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Gudula’s Well

Gudula's Well

On the edge of the old Stannary town of Ashburton is an small sacred well. On my last visit it looked like an insignificant weed-choked gutter but for centuries it has been a place of pilgrimage. Sited by the old Totnes road, the tiny well is said to have curative …

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Green Placenames

Green Placenames

I promise this is the last of the ‘colourful’ pages and concerns the colour ‘green’ and the phrase,; “green and pleasant land” couldn’t be a more apt description of parts of Dartmoor. The actual word ‘green’ derives from the Anglo Saxon word grëne which translates as growing or living, Clark …

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Grant’s Pot

Grant's Pot

  There are numerous place-names on Dartmoor that makes one ponder as to why they were called such. Back in the April of 2014 I received the following email which gave me cause for thought. “I have just been browsing your website with much interest and I wonder if you …

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