My 800th Field Note!
A couple of months ago I had read that the Long Barrow had been re-opened to the public and since then I have been 'chomping at the bit' to go back.
Boy, am I glad I did. This is a fantastic site to visit.
Easy parking, easy access and very close to several other sites which are also well worth seeing
We passed the site earlier on in the day but there were so many people there I decided to call back later when we were more likely to have the place to ourselves. We returned as dusk fell and sure enough this time there was no one to be seen – hurrah!
Sophie was asleep so Karen stayed in the car whilst myself and Dafydd headed off across the field – Dafydd insisting on wearing my head light and taking the lead!
As we approached the first think I noticed since my last visit was that the fence which surrounded the tomb had been removed. Then, there waiting for us, was the entrance!
Dafydd quickly took command of proceedings and insisted on going in first (as he had the light!). We both crawled on our hands and knees and were soon inside. Dafydd was then able to stand up while I crouched down. It was black inside and we both looked around using the light as best we could. It was then that I spotted the two side chambers – something I wasn't expecting – a real bonus.
We crept into the first chamber and it was then that I noticed something hanging from the ceiling. I couldn't make out what it was and called Dafydd over. We shone the light on the object and then to my great surprise (and delight) found it to be a bat roosting! It was only about 4 inches long and through the wings I could make out the head and eyes. I wasn't sure how Dafydd would react but typical of him he took it all in his stride. I didn't want to disturb the little thing so we backed out and went into the second chamber. Here Dafydd spotted a large spider hanging down. He quickly decided that this was the 'spider's house' and the other chamber being the 'bat's house'.
It was now starting to get dark and we headed back to the car. I excitedly told Karen about what we had seen and suggested she go and have a look herself. 'How do I get in?' asked Karen. 'Easy' said I, 'Dafydd has the light and all you need to do is crawl inside on your hands and knees'. 'If you think I am crawling on my hands and knees into a dark burial chamber…………………' We headed home.
This is a cracking site to visit and well done to English Heritage for doing the work required in order that the Long Barrow can be accessed again. I must admit when visiting these types of site I am still amazed that there is unrestricted access to these important and ancient monuments. I guess we should just be grateful and enjoy it for as long as we can.
Posted by CARL
6th January 2012ce