Thornworthy Little Common

Looking west along the row. The ranging rod is standing beside Stone 3 (Scale 1m).

A single stone row measuring at least 73.5m long, including 16 small-sized stones situated on a gentle north west facing slope with a sea view and an extensive view of South Wales.  The row is orientated ENE to WSW and there are several cairns, stone settings, row and standing stones in the vicinity.


England Somerset Exmoor SS 71326 43833
Lat 51.1791569   Long -3.8423068

Map showing the location of Thornworthy Little Common stone row.

Plan of Thornworthy Little Common stone row (After Royal Commission)

Map showing the position of Thornworthy Little Common, the other stone rows and other sites around Furzehill Common (Source: Exmoor National Park HER ).  


Type: Single Length: 44m
No. of stones: 16 Size of stones: Only small
Orientation: 78° Altitude: 375m
Upper end: – Lower end: –
Straight (Yes or No)  : Sea View: Yes
Context:  Cairns
Notes: Dense vegetation at the time of the field visit in April 2018 meant that it was not possible to survey the row or accurately define its extent.

Other Information

Public Access:  Yes
Land Status: National Park
Scheduled Ancient Monument: No


Category: Plausible. The surviving field evidence is entirely consistent with a prehistoric stone row interpretation. It has been suggested that it may be the remains of a field boundary, but the relatively even spacing of the stones means that it is almost certainly a stone row.


This stone row is of Type S10. Information on this form of stone row and other rows of this type is available here.


Stone 1 at SS 71267 43813 measures 0.18m long by 0.10m wide and stands up to 0.14m high. The stone is orientated at 17°. View from east (Scale 1m).

Stone 2 at SS 71262 43812 measures 0.23m long by 0.16m wide and stands up to 0.19m high. The stone is orientated at 90°. View from north (Scale 1m).

Stone 3 at SS 71256 43811 measures 0.14m long by 0.10m wide and stands up to 0.01m high. The stone is orientated at 95°. View from west (Scale 1m). Most of the previously described stones could not be found during the field visit because they were hidden by a thick layer of molinia grass. In the summer months it is unlikely that any of the stones will be visible.  

Sea Views

A restricted view of the nearby Bristol Channel closed by the South Wales coast is visible from the row. As it was not possible to precisely establish the positions of the top and bottom of the row it was not possible to ascertain whether there was a sea view reveal, although the siting of the row does suggest that it may have been built across the line of visibility to the sea. 

The view to the north as well as including the Bristol Channel also embraces the South Wales coast.  From the row both the Black Mountain and Bancbryn are clearly visible. It is perhaps worth emphasing that the Thornworthy Little Common stone row is morphologically similar to the Bancbryn row with both being long single rows consisting mainly of small stones.

Access Information 

Limited car parking is available at SS 71410 44956 at Shallowford. From here head south along the path to SS 71330 43866 and enter the field on your right. From here it is a short walk to the row which may be difficult to find in the dense undergrowth.

Online Resources 

Megalithic Portal     PastScape     Historic Environment Record

Other References

Burl, A., 1993, From Carnac to Callanish – The prehistoric rows and avenues of Britain, Ireland and Brittany, Yale University Press, New York and London, pg. 216.


VISITED:-20th April 2018

FIRST PUBLISHED:- 12th February 2016

LAST UPDATED:- 21st November 2020

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