Marine Mapping Helps Uncover the Past in the New Forest
Hampshire, UK, 08 September 2009 -
The New Forest National Park Authority is using detailed marine mapping from SeaZone to undertake an archaeological assessment of its coastline in response to changing sea levels... continues...
"A retired fisherman has discovered an ancient stone head which experts say could be 24,000 years old - the oldest found in Britain." The five-inch stone head was found off Long Island in Hampshire and according to archaeologists could be a piece of Neanderthal art. "A similar stone head was found in a Neanderthal cave in northern France and was dated back to 28,000 BC."
Full story and photo appear on page 7 of The Times, 2 October 2004.
An astonishing report compiling aerial photography and other surveys in the chalkland area between the Itchen and Test rivers. A must for the Hampshire Antiquarian! There are many possible sites in here that were never known about before!
In case you're visiting sites in Hants and wondering what formicaant, pure joy, jimit and others are referring to, this is it. Indispensible but only as good as its sources. Refers often to PHFC (Proceedings of the Hampshire Field Club, which is now published as Hampshire Studies, an annual journal), which is available at the Hants Record Office next to Winchester railway station.
Easily spotted south of the B3055 - a short distance west of the Hatchet Pond Barrow. The previous excavation of this barrow has left it well mangled.
This monument includes a round barrow situated on lowland heath. The barrow mound, which was partially excavated during the winter of l941/2, measures 29m in diameter and 1.7m high. It was constructed of turves and gravel and is surrounded by a 2.3m wide ditch from which the mound material was quarried during construction. This ditch now survives as a 3m wide and 0.25m deep earthwork. No burial was found, the only find of note being an amber necklace.
Easily spooted south of the B3055.
Another barrow covered in gorse.
Immediately east of the barrow is an earthwork consisting of a low bank and ditch. No idea how old this is?
This monument includes a bowl barrow situated on lowland heath. The barrow mound is relatively flat topped and measures 25m in diameter and stands up to 0.7m high. A slight hollow in the mound centre suggests previous robbing or early exploration of the site. Although no longer visible at ground level, a ditch, from which material was quarried during construction of the monument, surrounds the barrow mound. This has become infilled over the years but survives as a buried feature c.2m wide. This monument is one of a widely scattered group of round barrows situated on Beaulieu Heath.
Both barrows are easy to spot from the road but are both covered y the dreaded gorse.
E. H. state:
This monument includes two bell barrows situated on lowland heath. The southern barrow mound measures 16m in diameter and stands up to 1.4m high. Surrounding the mound is a level berm or platform, surviving to an average width of 2.2m, a ditch, from which material was quarried during the construction of the barrow, and an outer bank. The ditch has become partly infilled over the years, but survives as a slight earthwork 2m wide and 0.8m deep; the bank is 2.7m wide and 0.4m high. The overall diameter of this barrow is 35m. The northern barrow mound measures 14m in diameter and stands up to 1.5m high. Surrounding the mound is a berm, which has an average width of 1m, a ditch, which is 2m wide and 0.5m deep, and an outer bank 3.5m wide and 0.4m high. The overall diameter of this barrow is 33m. Both barrow mounds have evidence for partial excavation or robbing in the form of a slight hollow in the mound centre.
My last site of the day which again ended in disappointment. My old O/S map shows two barrows - the most up to date now only shows one. Again E.H. have nothing to say about it.
In short I couldn't see any trace of it. The field was in short crop of some sort and I suspect this barrow has now been completely ploughed out?
I did intend to visit the barrows in Bishop's Waltham (which seem to be in good nick) but by now the others had had enoug and wanted to get food and get to the hotel. Although disappointed I can't really complain as it had been a long day and we were all getting tired.
My 1974 O.S. map (that's what you get from buying maps from charity shops!) shows 5 barrows in the vicinity of Brockwood Park. The latest E.H. map now sadly only shows one barrow but has nothing to say about it.
The area where the barrow is shown is covered with trees and I am not sure I could see it. There is one obvious small 'mound' with a tree growing on top of it but this could just be a mound created by the tree's roots?
It was the first chance I had to get 'out and about' this year and I took the chance to knock off a few English Heritage sites in the Winchester / Southampton area. On my way to one such site I had chance for a quick visit to Oliver's Battery.
Finding the site is easy enough - a road runs right through it - and a handy car park is at its western edge. The whole site is overgrown wth trees and brambles etc. It would have taken a lot longer for a proper visit than I had time for but I was able to spot the curving edge of the bank next to the car park. Although overgrown it is about 0.5m in height and not difficult to spot.
Given the site is so easy to visit I am surprised these are the first field notes?