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Reigate Heath

Barrow / Cairn Cemetery

<b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMANImage © Robert Gladstone
Nearest Town:Reigate (2km E)
OS Ref (GB):   TQ236503 / Sheet: 187
Latitude:51° 14' 16.5" N
Longitude:   0° 13' 45.31" W

Added by Rhiannon

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<b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by GLADMAN <b>Reigate Heath</b>Posted by Jonnee23


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This site is easily found and well worth checking out, for all those close to South London and have a car, to find the best examples of possible Bronze Age barrows as close to London as you may find (the next being possibly Croham Hurst in South Croydon).

Take the A25 route from Reigate to Dorking and less than 1km from the town centre you will easily see a turn off into the Heath down Flanchford Road – you can park in a dedicated car park a few hundred yards down. Cross the road and heading NE, you are on the heathland and upon the first of the tumuli that are marked on the nearby council information board - though it is very difficult to discern from the rest of the increasingly undulating landscape that unfolds the further you walk on…

Carry on up the main path and into the trees and take your guess and use your instincts as to where exactly the other tumuli might be – despite the claim to there being seven barrows here! There are two more pronounced barrow like formations as indicated on the notice board and OS maps at TQ236504 (picture to follow) and TQ237505, approx. 30 ft in diameter, with no discernable alignment, and a possible 2 or more north of these a little off the beaten path and very close to the edge of the A25/Buckland Road.

It is an attractive area to walk around despite the close proximity of yet another damn golf course! (re: Addington and Gally Hills closer to Croydon) but you can freely navigate this area! - and do take time to venture south west towards and up around the windmill/chapel for a perspective on the landscape, with rewarding views all around, especially the Downs to the north!
Jonnee23 Posted by Jonnee23
23rd May 2005ce
Edited 26th May 2005ce


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Ok this isn't exactly connected with the barrows, but with the nearby brook and a stone there. It was said to be haunted by the Buckland Shag, "a four footed beast with a shaggy coat." Sounds like one of those big black dogs to me - and they often like barrows too. The actual story refers to where the Shag Brook crosses the main road, which would be at TQ228508.

"By the side of this very stream laid a large stone for I know not how many years - perhaps for centuries." The lane here was the place where the owner of the manor house of Buckland used to take a local girl courting. But although he swore 'eternal fidelity' the cad was just trying to.. well you know the name of the stream. When he suggested this the poor girl was so shocked that 'her pure spirit escaped' from her body and she dropped down dead. This must have been a bit of a shock because the poor man then felt the need to stab himself with his own dagger, and fell dead next to her.

The next morning someone (probably walking their dog) spotted a lovely untainted pure stream and a dark stone, dripping blood into it - the implication, you see, being that they had been transformed into these emblems of Innocence and Hardened Wickedness. Well, "this legend has, perhaps naturally, raised a local spectre. At the dreary hour of midnight a terrific object has been seen lingering about the spot." It used to be seen on the stone, but some interfering descendent of the manor owner moved the stone to his own place. But "the stone, however, still continued to bleed, and I believe it oozes forth its crimson drops even to the present day. Its removal did not remove or intimidate the spectre."

There is some more on the beast, but unfortunately the scan on Google Books misses this page out.

From p485 of The Gentleman's Magazine, Dec 1827 (v97).

On the high road between Buckland and Reigate the devil is popularly believed to amuse himself with dancing, sometimes in the shape of a dog, and at others in that of a donkey.. He has been shot at repeatedly, but his Satanic Majesty turned out as might have been expected altogether bullet-proof. One old fellow, who was bolder than his neighbours, then ventured near enough to run a pitch-fork through him, but he danced on as merrily as ever.. Some unbelievers, however, who have a wonderful propensity for explaining everything by natural causes, have hinted at the presence of marshy grounds in the neighbourhood as being likely enough to have originated certain meteoric illusions, which by the usual process of exaggeration might grow into a dancing devil.. the people choose to believe their own eye-sight, and will not give up their Buckland Hag, as they call this apparition, let philosophy say what it pleases.

p207 in 'New Curiosities of Literature' by George Soane (1849).
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
11th April 2007ce
Edited 30th October 2007ce