|I was up here on Sunday as part of the Yeavering conference.
The day started with a visit to Maelmin which set the context of Yeavering bell being a sacred hill to the people of the neolithic. The Coupland henge being orientated towards the twin peaks of the Bell. Clive Waddington and Paul Frodsham explained how the Bell was the most nothern most hill of the Cheviot Massif and how it stood apart from the rest of the hills.
From Maelmin we were bussed to Ad Gefrin at the foot of the Bell. This is the site of King Edwins palace and the place where Paulinus converted and baptised the Northumbrians in the River Glen.
Following a look around the site we proceeded up the Bell via the tumble down barn known as the Old Palace which was probably a bastle.
The woodland on the north face of the Bell is last piece of ancient woodland in the national park.
Yeavering means place of the goats and you can still see wild goats and their kids chilling out in the valley below the footpath. As you follow the path around the back of the Bell you can see evidence of field systems with low walls still intact.
The Hillfort itself is huge, the stone walls, although collapsed, are still huge and completely encircle the twin summits for 950m enclosing an area of 13.5 acres. The walls in some places were 8m thick.
Once inside the fort there is evidence everywhere of hut circles, there are at least 125.
The eastern peak has a modern walkers cairn on top of it but there was originally a neolithic burial cairn on this site.
The views from this place are fantastic. The Millfield basin, the sandstone fells, the coastal plain and the Cheviots can all be seen in a wonderful panorama. We could see the crop marks of at least two of the Millfield Henges and aparently when the crop in the field at the foot the Bell is growing you can see the henge there too.
All in all a crackin' day and an excellent site.
Get yersel' there.
Posted by fitzcoraldo
1st April 2003ce
Edited 30th November 2003ce