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Barbury Castle

Hillfort

Fieldnotes

Wild, windy weather today, the tail-end of an Atlantic hurricane. I just wanted to be somewhere high and open - so Barbury Castle it was. I've been here many times before but today, after an exhilerating walk into the wind along the ramparts, for the first time I headed up along the Ridgeway towards Hackpen Hill. Made it to a large clump of trees before turning back towards Barbury; seeing Barbury from the Ridgeway gave it a whole new perspective. From that view point it is clear that Barbury is a promontary hillfort as it sits on the end of a hill ridge with the land dropping gradually away towards the plain below.

The information board on the Ridgeway side of Barbury tells us that the area is rich in burial mounds, among which an ancient disc barrow is the most important. Dated 1700BC it is thought to be the burial site of an aristocratic woman.

The information board goes on to say that during the laying of a trench by Esso, the skeleton of an elderly woman dated at around 300AD was found deep in the chalk bed. Probably a member of the local Romano British community who farmed the area. (The workers who found the remains originally called them ERIC 'Early remains in chalk' but later changed this to Erica).
tjj Posted by tjj
13th September 2011ce

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