|The L7B site is a major site in the area, in my opinion as great as White Horse Hill or Waylands Smithy for archaeological interest. Although not seven in number (more like 30 plus!) it is a major bronze age barrow cemetry, akin to normanton et al.
I recommend that visitors to the site should also look at some other areas of interest nearby:
1) the remains of a neolithic long barrow (as marked on the OS map 'Explorer 170 - Abingdon, Wantage and the Vale of White Horse') just on the edge of a small copse NW of the main site. Some sarsen stones remain (please, please leave them there for others!) and the 'hump' of the remains of a long barrow can still be seen. This continuity of a sacred burial site (neolithic through to bronze age - covering a good 1000 years or more) is simply amazing. The hill marked on the OS map adjacent to the long barrow site is still called 'crog hill'. This is an iron age (celtic) word which means 'hill, mound or tumulus' (Crug). Indicating that with the arrival of the iron age, the celtic peoples recognised the place as a place of the dead and this placename has survived right through to the modern day. Again, simply amazing!
2) A nearby approach road to the area (B4001) as it crosses over the ridgeway and past Sparsholt firs (the big radio tower). Has a very well preserved barrow adjacent to it (marked on the OS map). It is just inside the trees there, and its edge would have crossed the tarmac'd road. Although the main hump of the barrow is well worn, you can still see the circular bank and ditch around its circumference. The area has been recently fenced off by the local landowner (September 2003). From this view point, you can look down into the L7B area. Carrying further along the straight tarmac'd road here are a few other breaks of beech trees. Some appear to contain possible barrow sites - make your own mind up if you visit.
3) Between postdown house and sevn barrows house on the other side of the road from the main site, are more barrows worth exploring. Also further past the site on the road between 'scary hill' and 'sparsholt down' are even more barrows. Study the OS map and take a look.
All in all L7B has many sides to explore in terms of neolithic, bronze and iron age interest. Take time to visit the centre of the site, but also explore the environs, they are interesting too!
Posted by wysefool
3rd November 2003ce
Edited 4th November 2003ce