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Cartington Hill


<b>Cartington Hill</b>Posted by HobImage © IH
Nearest Town:Alnwick (15km NE)
OS Ref (GB):   NU04900496 / Sheet: 81
Latitude:55° 20' 18.61" N
Longitude:   1° 55' 21.87" W

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The Priest and Clerk Natural Rock Feature

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<b>Cartington Hill</b>Posted by Hob <b>Cartington Hill</b>Posted by Hob


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The top of Cartington Hill boasts three bronze age cairns, in a line more or less north to south, couple of hundred metres apart.

The hill has very nice 360° views, with the border ridge to the west, Simonside very prominent to the south, The Cheviots to the north, and the edge of Rimside Moor to the east. The deeply worn (like 2-3 m deep) drove roads clearly visible up the little secluded (and 99% deserted) Debdon valley hint at very old routeways.

There are a whole boatload of prehistoric sites intervisible as a result of this, but the one that stuck out in my mind was the Five Kings over on Dues Hill to the south west. I'd always thought Dues Hill must have been given it's name by the Vikings, as it has such a similarity to the Duergar, an allegedly Viking name for the sprites of Simonside. But seeing it leaping out of the murky horizon from Cartington Hill, I wondered it it was possibly of roman origin, as Dues Hill is very clearly twin-peaked.

Anyway, enough of the view. The southern cairn I just managed to yomp to, take a pic, post to TMA, then leg it back to Rothbury in time for tea, is not fantastically accessible, but is worth the fairly short hop through the waist deep heather. It's been mucked about with over the years, and the sangar is just big enough to provide shelter, but hasn't disturbed the kerb. It's quite a size. EH's listing says it's 17.5m in diameter and 1.8m high. Sounds about right to me. It's got an odd remnant of some modern activity in the form of a very weathered wooden stump with some very rusted thick steel cable afixed to it, just poking out from the bottom of the sangar.

Just south, halfway up the hill, are some lovely big expanses of flat eroded outcrops that screamed 'We probably had cup and ring marks but if we did, they've wethered away!' at me.

Next time, I shall return in better weather, and go see the middle cairn, which has an exposed cist, and the northern cairn, which is totally undisturbed but covered with heather.
Hob Posted by Hob
13th June 2011ce

Latest posts for Cartington Hill

The Priest and Clerk (Natural Rock Feature) — Links


These are on the side of Cartington Hill. Tomlinson's 1889 'Comprehensive Guide to the County of Northumberland' says "About half-a-mile to the north*, on the left-hand side of a moorland road, are two large stones called "Priest" and "Clerk," from their position, the one being a little below the other." Derek Harper's photos show them to be pretty weird looking.

*from what he calls 'in the direction of Debdon House, a small Druid's circle of nine large stones' - one of the cairns or something else?
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
19th September 2012ce