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Medway & Bucks

It's been a few weeks since I've had a serious stone-chasing trip. This week was no exception.

However, our various travels did afford an opportunity to meet some old friends on Saturday in the form of the Medway sites.

We wandered across the Thames and into the navigational black hole that is South London. Somehow, some way, we emerged near Croydon unscathed by the journey and with our passporst intact. Being gluttons for punishment we headed back in toward Beckenham to feed Mikki's retail leanings. After this came a bit more wandering, trying to rely on my unerring navigational ability, whioch sadly found us near another of her preferred outlets in the lovely village of Shoreham.

But at least I knew where I was now. We headed off down the A20 and were soon passing the bulk of Oldbury Camp, towards Addington, with Coldrum off to our left.

My objective today, if I were to admit having one, was to finally see the Coffin Stone. I looped up through Aylesford then off toward Eccles before heading back across toward Kits Coty and the area known as Great Tottington.

Whilst in the area, I also visited the Countless Stones and Kit's Coty, just to say hello again.

The Coffin Stone — Fieldnotes

About 25 yards south of the Countless Stones is a turn off. I precariously parked here and crossed the road to an entrance to a bridleway to see if I could see the Coffin Stone in it's field. Luckily, the crop had been harvested, and the stone(s) stood proud of the field, in full sight. I didn't approach the stones on this ocassion, being contented enough just to see them, and not wanting to encroach on what is obviously a cropping field. A couple of hundred yards further south is an entrance to Great Tottington Farm. I may ask here next time for permission to actually visit the stones.

There is also supposedly a circle, or ruined circle of stones (The Tottington Sarsens) at the head of the stream on the farm. It would be interesting to see if anything remains of this site/monument.

We then popped into Rochester to browse the bookshops there and have a bite to eat before heading home. Baggins books has a good selection of archaeological books, but they don't discount, even for bulk purchases, so I left empty handed.

On Sunday, we headed up toward Whipsnade and checked out the Tree Cathedral, which was very peaceful and had a wonderful atmosphere about it for a couple of pagans like us, even if it is laid out in the form of a mediaeval Christian Cathedral. The chancel would be ideal for our handfasting...

From there, we headed off (the Whipsnade Lion could do with a good scouring!) past the car park for Ivinghoe Beacon and made our way across country, roughly following parallel to the route of the Icknield Way to Aston Clinton.

From here, it was a short drive down country lanes to take a look at Cholesbury Camp, an interesting site, where one quarter of the fortifications have been taken away to build a small housing estate, and a church resides in the fort itself.

Finally, the call of food won us over and we headed for Berkhamstead for a meal before, once again, heading for home.

Only three weeks before we hit Cornwall again...
ocifant Posted by ocifant
14th September 2003ce
Edited 29th September 2003ce

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