|What a surprise and delight and what a curious site.
As noted in the fieldnotes elsewhere, this fort/settlement/refuge was never finished. This is plainly obvious when walking around it. In some places the ditch and bank are nicely finished and contoured, then there is a break, a sort of causeway, and the next bit is quite different: a shallower ditch, a less "finished" profile and dumps of earth on top which have had no attempt to make them into a profiled bank.
It looks just like a building site when everybody has just knocked off for tea! There is the strong feeling that if you were to wait a bit they'll be back.
Archaeologists have suggested that each section might have been constructed by a different family. What a source of competition/arguments/backbiting that arrangement could have been!
Anyway it was abandoned when almost finished. Why? Did Big Brother (Sister?) across the valley, Beacon Hill, tell them to stop/join forces/out perform them/enslave them?
Internal and other external features are difficult to see as waist high grass and nettles obscure them.
A winter visit might be in order.
The site is not visited much and there are no worn paths anywhere. Skylarks and buzzards while I was there and it is much quieter than Beacon Hill with very little noise from the A34. Although not as high it probably has better views and is much easier to get to the top.
A site for the imagination.
Take signposts off A34 to Old Burghclere, go through village and at T junction to the left (N) park on verge on right. (2/3 cars?) Take bridleway (S), level if muddy path along valley floor, with diversions. Gentle slope right to the top. At iron gate take sharp dog-leg to the left, follow field boundary to 5-bar gate. (Private land?)
Posted by jimit
21st July 2008ce