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Sourton Tors

Sourton Tor, Granite Tor (possible site), Granate Tor (possible site)

Possibly most famous for its disused Ice Works, Sourton Tors are essentially a large and sprawling collection of metamorphic outcrops on the north-western periphery of Dartmoor. There are beautiful views to be had from the summit trig point. It is a conspicuous landmark from Cornwall to the west. Best access is from Prewley Moor to the north.

Eric Hemery describes the Ice Works; "The venture of Sourton Ice Works dates from about 1875 and endured for only a decade. Requirements for its successful operation were all in hand on the north-east shoulder of Sourton Down: water, high incidence of frost, exposure to icy winds, accessibility for horse and cart. Water was conveyed from a hillside spring into long, shallow, rectangular pits, in which deepening ice invariably formed during the long winter months on this bitterly cold, north-west slope of northern Dartmoor. Ice was cut into blocks and laid for storage in specially dug trenches."

"When needed for transportation, it was transferred to a walled pit inside the rectangular house, from which it could be loaded in the minimum of time onto waiting carts. In those day before mechanical refrigeration, ice was much in demand by fishmongers for the preservation of their stock; the Plymouth merchants were supplied from Sourton by horse-and-wagon." There is also some suggestion that this is so called Granate Tor. However, the rock type here is not granite.

Sourton Tors
The map above is not a navigation tool and we recommend that the grid reference shown below is used in conjunction with an Ordnance Survey map and that training in its use with a compass is advised.
Grid Ref:
SX 5433 8983
Tor Classification:
Rock Type:
William Crossing
Ordnance Survey
Ordnance Survey Maps
Eric Hemery: High Dartmoor

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