|Lord’s Piece is a strange little triangle of heathland just south of the River Rother near Fittleworth. As somebody else aptly put it, “it’s like a little bit of the New Forest placed in the heart of West Sussex”. Where the name derives from I’ve no idea, but within the few acres of this conservation area are at least five barrows made up of a linear group of three and a pair (one large, one small) on a small ridge to the south. Also visible are a number of boundary markers criss-crossing the land which I at first thought were contemporary with the barrows until I came to the middle barrow of the linear group and discovered a ‘boundary marker’ passing right through the centre of the barrow, which seems unlikely to have been the barrow builder’s original intention. The linear group are all roughly the same size, about 10-12m across but not very high at about 2m max and they’ve all recently been cleared of vegetation and are now adorned with giant wire ‘hair nets’ (or at least that’s what it looked like from a distance) which I guess keeps the local rabbits and badgers at bay. The two barrows on the ridge are interesting because of the disparity in size, the larger being about 10m across and 2.5m high whereas the smaller barrow about 30m distant is only about 4m across and barely rises more than 0.5m. The larger barrow also has a curious hole at its northern edge almost suggesting that this was the source of its material, though it’s so messy no Bronze Age barrow builder worth his salt would ever admit to this below par workmanship! It’s probably more modern than that, possibly a dried up drinking hole for cattle. Parking is very easy as there are two small carparking areas on the western side of the heath.
Posted by A R Cane
7th March 2012ce