EH suggests three options for Silbury
This from today's Western Daily Press website.
Urgent remedial work must be carried out to save Silbury Hill from collapse, English Heritage said yesterday. The threat to the 130ft mound, which is one of the West's most mysterious prehistoric monuments, was blamed on excavations made for a BBC TV documentary in the 1960s.http://www.westpress.co.uk/displayNode.jsp?nodeId=146049&command=displayContent&sourceNode=145779&contentPK=11772411
An English Heritage survey has revealed that the late Professor Richard Atkinson's tunnel, which was dug in 1968/69 was not, as previously thought, properly filled in.
The unexpected discovery is already causing minor internal collapses and 'voids' within Europe's largest man-made hill that will, in time, reach the surface. If unattended, it will damage highly significant deposits in the centre of the structure that contain its early history and perfectly preserved plant and animal remains.
English Heritage says it is considering three options:
- Pumping chalk slurry into the voids.
- Re-opening the tunnel and backfilling by hand.
- As above, but supporting the tunnel to allow repeated access.
Respected West archaeologist Mike Pitts, editor of British Archaeology magazine which revealed the threat, urged English Heritage to act swiftly.
I can't see any of this on the EH website - it still says "we are relieved to be able to conclude that Silbury Hill is a very robust structure with no major defects that might threaten its stability, due largely to the way it was originally constructed 4,500 years ago."
Posted by Rhiannon
4th February 2005ce
Edited 1st October 2006ce