From Cheltenham take the A435 south and then west along the A436. You will shortly cone to a turning on your left (south) signposted Cowley. Take this turning and about 1.5km along the minor road you will come to a turning on the left. There is room to park next to the field gate opposite. The Long Barrow is visible from the gate and is only a short walk away, along the Gloucestershire Way.
After spending a day visiting what must have been every charity shop in Cheltenham (It’s what Karen wanted to do for her birthday) it was time for a bit of ‘old stoning’.
After my recent near scrapes with farmers it was nice to be able to visit a site that has a public right of way. Well, that isn’t 100% accurate as you do have to enter a field off the Gloucestershire Way – but it is only a matter of a few metres – so I am sure it would be ok.
The sun was shining through the gaps in the clouds. Had it not been for the cold wind it would have been quite warm. The track way from the road was fairly flat and I passed a herd of cows with an ever watchful bull in a field to my left. Fortunately I was more interested in the Long Barrow which was in the empty field opposite.
A handy metal field gate gave easy access.
The Long Barrow has clearly taken a bit of punishment over the years and was now in two sections with a gap through the middle of it. It looks as though the cattle walk through this gap when using the field. There is also evidence of what appears to be at least two ‘excavations’ of the Barrow in years gone by?
For all this, the Long Barrow still stands tall and proud in its position at the head of a valley.
It is approximately 30m long x 3m in height. A large bush/small tree grows in each of the Barrow’s two sections. I could only see one largish stone lying on top of the grass.
There are good views all along the valley and presumably this is why the Barrow was placed here originally?
I sat for a short while on top of the Barrow, looking down the valley and simply watching the world go by. It is these types of moments which make it all worth while.
Well worth the effort when in the area.
Before too long I had to head back to Karen in the car.
‘Do you have a plastic bag I can have?’ I asked.
‘Yes, here’ she replied passing the bag. ‘Why do you need a bag?’
‘I just passed a large cow pat which would be good for the rhubarb’
‘Does it smell much?’ Karen wearily enquired.
‘Not much’ I reassured her!
I know how to treat a girl on her birthday!!
Posted by CARL
25th April 2013ce