Campaign to protect henges is stepped up
article by staff of The Darlington & Stockton Times
A CAMPAIGN to protect the setting of ancient monuments near Bedale is gathering momentum and a fighting fund has been set up.
The Thornborough henges - ancient earthworks - are said to be Yorkshire's rival to Stonehenge.
Following an enthusiastic open meeting last week, The Friends of Thornborough adopted new chairman Jon Lowry's strategic plan to intensify their campaign.
The group may even write to the Prince of Wales asking for his support.
The Friends are incensed that the landscape setting of the largest complex of prehistoric earthworks in Britain is being destroyed by aggregates mining.
Tarmac Northern wants to extend the workings of its quarrying and has stressed that English Heritage would be consulted on protection and preservation of the henges.
Part of the restoration would attempt to return the area to the appearance which archaeologists believed it once had.
The monuments, which are older than Stonehedge, were once used for ceremonial purposes by people from all over the North and were part of a network of prehistoric monuments including other henges near Ripon and the Devil's Arrows at Boroughbridge.
"We need to harness people power to both save and enhance the setting of such amazing Stone Age henge temples," said Mr Lowry
At the meeting a petition was organised on the night, and one member suggested asking for the support of the Prince of Wales who is known to have a deep concern for the country's heritage and environment.
It was decided to keep membership of the Friends open to anyone with the same concerns and to rely upon donations to provide a fighting fund.
Those attending promptly contributed £400 to start the ball rolling, although it was recognised that far more would be necessary to finance a professional campaign
Membership requests and donations to The Friends of Thornborough can be sent to Mr Lowry at 7 Beech Close, Snape, Bedale, DL8 2TP.
Posted by Rhiannon
18th July 2003ce
Edited 7th January 2005ce