Higher Uppacott Longhouse, Poundsgate, Dartmoor National Park

Higher Uppacott Longhouse, Poundsgate, Dartmoor National Park

Exeter has a superb museum. In its medieval section is a model of a house with toy animals at one end and living space at the other. The model is popular with children and is a great introduction to a Devon longhouse.

There are dozens of these longhouses in and around Dartmoor National Park. The one at Higher Uppacott, however, is a rare example of a 14th century longhouse. Like the model in the museum, you can see the 'shippon', or area in which animals lived, in something approximating its original state. Because the building has been preserved, it offers an insight into how people have lived and worked on Dartmoor for well over half a millennium. Clearly, it's a very special place.

Higher Uppacott is not open to the public except through guided tours. See the Dartmoor National Park Authority website for details.

It's not the easiest place to get to on foot. When researching this listing, we planned to walk in via Dr Blackall's Drive from New Bridge. There's a path marked on the Harvey British Mountain Map 'Dartmoor' map but on the ground there's a sign saying no access. As such, we wandered around to the Bel Tor car parking area and then dropped down the road. It's a narrow, popular road so be careful of traffic. The same applies if you walk up this road in the opposite direction from the Poundsgate/New Bridge area. 

When we've visited, there has also been limited parking outside the house but it's best to check with Dartmoor National Park Authority to see if this is permissible. There are lay-bys along the Poundsgate road. Zoom in on the 'Satellite' setting of the accompanying Google map to see these.

If you are unable to make a visit, we'd recommend buying a copy of Dartmoor National Park Authority's 'Higher Uppacott: The evolution of a medieval Dartmoor Longhouse'. These are available from the National Park Visitor Centres at Princetown, Postbridge and Haytor.