SP 10890924 (1). The Ablington Beehive Chamber is an underground circular chamber situated in the south slope of a long low irregular mound, which, though covered with undergrowth, appears to be aligned roughly E/W with a length of over 150 ft. The chamber is constructed with dry-stone-walling, with stone seats and three cupboards or niches, above which the wall is corbelled to an entrance at the top, 6 1/2 ft above the floor. It was excavated c 1865 by Samuel Lysons, and again in 1925 by A D Passmore and E C Daubeney, when no dating evidence was found apart from a module of flint foreign to the district. Locally it was supposed to be a shepherd's cot, but Passmore believed it to be a prehistoric burial chamber in a mutilated mound, possibly a barrow, and O'Neil and Grinsell list the structure as Neolithic. W F Grimes points out its similarity to the barrow near Saltway Barn (SP 10 NW 2) and other neighbouring barrows, suggesting a culturally distinct sub-group of the long barrow folk. There is a tradition of another bee-hive chamber being found in Hole Ground, a few hundred yards to the NE.
A possible long barrow orientated WNW-ESE measures 40.0m by 14.0m by 0.5m high. The corbelled chamber is exposed towards the west corner of the south side. 'Hole Ground' is not known locally. Surveyed at 1:2500 on PFD.
There are actually two long barrows very close to each other here.
Lamborough Banks itself is the northernmost and overlooks a dry valley. It's a 'cotswold-severn' type which had v-shaped horns of drystone walling and a false entrance at the south end. It was excavated in 1854 by Canon Samuel Lysons who also found a stone-lined chamber with a single burial. The site's in rather a dishevelled state now but at least it's in its own walled area.
The other barrow is much shorter and orientated in a different direction. Lysons excavated this one too, and found an unusual circular underground drystone walling chamber. It's in the shape of a beehive and has three stone 'seats', above which are three niches, and the wall is corbelled to an entrance at the top, 2m from the floor. The chamber was backfilled, although apparently the top few courses of stone are still visible. It's an unusual feature in a long barrow, although according to the SMR similar structures have been recorded elsewhere on the Cotswolds.