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Itchen Stoke Down Barrows

Barrow / Cairn Cemetery


Three barrows in a loose triangle arrangement on top of a beautifully isolated and silent bit of downland with views all around. You can get here on foot, bike or horse as it's a spot where four byways and one bridleway meet. If you are unsteady on the old pins or using a wheelchair your best bet would be the 500m byway which crosses the paved road from Itchen Stoke to Abbotstone.

Sadly, they are being ploughed now and are not as grand as they might have been even just fifty years ago. Two undulations can easily be spotted against the west edge of the field. Pause here to enjoy the birdsong, the big open skies and the views. Ahhhh.

Oddly they are not scheduled, so no info in MAGIC. Hampshire Treasures has little to say but (probably following their LV Grinsell reference at P.H.F.C., Vol. 14, 1938-40, p.353) suggests two of the barrows "may be of the saucer type". Well, that didn't automatically seem the case to me. I could just as easily see these as bowls that got plundered for chalk and flints and then excavated and ploughed down gradually. There is also a reference to RAF aerial photograph
CPE/UK/1842/3154/5. I wonder how one finds these... I'm sure there is some MoD archivist out there who would love to hear from the likes of us.

I paced across the field and took some photos, gazed about the place and eventually reluctantly made my way back through some lovely old lanes to civilisation.
UncleRob Posted by UncleRob
21st November 2008ce

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