05/05/2016 - We parked at the Lordenshaws car park really just to have a walk on the Simonside Hills. Once there we realised that maybe we were heading in the wrong direction! The 1:50000 OS map doesn't give that much away but a quick glance at the 1:25000 revealed a hillside full of megalithic wonder. Luckily we had all day so we chose Simonside first, leaving the afternoon free to roam the tops on the other side of the road.
The hillside, topped with a great hillfort, is just full of rocks with markings on the them. First up to the big one. Great rock art and the location is fantastic. Close views of the Simonside Hills and The Cheviots looking fine in the distance. After that we spent the rest of the time there just wandering around looking at random stones and taking in the scenery.
So much to see but the one that will stay with me is the Channel Rock. On the far side of the hillfort is this most fantastic rock. It's huge and has this channel in it that has to be seen. I can't really explain why I loved it so much but I just found the groove and the smooth surface of the rock so pleasing to the eye.
Top site. If you go (and you should) make a day of it. So much to see.
Went on the eleventh of this month and loved it. The main panel and hillfort - superb. Think I saw some cairns and I have a photograph but I am not sure of what it is. It is not the ones I have posted.
Sometimes Rock art can be tricky to find. Not here though.
Straight up the path from the carpark, turn left, look for the big rock covered in carvings. Just in case the rock is feeling bashful, the main panel has a slightly quaint signit is virtually impossible to miss.
As ever, a copy of the relevant Stan Beckensall doesn't go amiss.
A great place to start a jaunt up Simonside, which must surely be the focal landscape feature for this area's rock art, though it does have a good vista over the nearby river valley (that of the Coquet), as is apparently desirable in a suitable site for cups and rings.
Back again today, finally found the horse-shoe rock, and it was SO obvious now I know where to look! Just follow the line of wall west, from the main rock.
Found a secret mission taking place which I would tell you all about, but would then have to kill you ;-)
The research has now been published, see link below for details.
On a very bright clear February Saturday afternoon, lots of people had the same idea as me to come here (including moey! PS I was first :-) )
The car-park was very busy (approx 15 cars+), but surprisingly it still had a feeling of isolation, and the site is large enough to take lots of separate wanderers. If you come in the summer, come early or late, you'll get parked and the light will be better!
There is definately more rock art than I found today, another great excuse for a return visit.
As long as weather conditions are alright next week and the place is not under three feet of snow I am planning on going to see the whole Lordenshaw site. I have read about a car park, is it far from the site itself and is North Lordenshaw far away.
Sat 2 - Sun 3 December 2006
Sat 9 - Sun 10 December 2006
As part of The North East Winter festival, artist Philip Supple has been commissioned to create an effects lighting installation piece focusing on the cup and ring marks at Lordenshaw. It has been described as 'Subtle, yet mind-blowing'.
The installation is to be an important feature of a series of guided walks from the nearby village of Rothbury, to the 'sacred hill' of Simonside, the walks highlight the archaeology of the area, and also include an emphasis on the folklore of the Duergar.
Contact Rothbury National Park Centre (Tel: 01669 620887)
or visit: the NE winter festival website .
05/05/2016 - Standing inside Lordenshaws hillfort, just looking around at the view, I thought we were done for the day. Then I turned to face Garleigh Hill. The little white trigpoint seem to call out to me and the rocky side of the hill looked just to good to pass up on. Easy walk across and lots of interesting rocks to look at on the short climb up. The cairn is just next to the trigpoint. Large capstone visible. A fine way to end the day.
Old OS maps have stone circles marked on them at the top. I guess this is just the cairn. Anyone know anymore?
The remains of a round cairn cemetery of Bronze Age date are visible on Carleigh Moor. Seven of the round cairns lie immediately north east of the nearby hillfort (NZ 09 NE 2) on sloping ground. These cairns measure 7 metres to 8 metres in diameter and stand between 0.3 metres and 1 metre high. Two of the cairns have the remains of a retaining circle. Two of the other cairns were excavated during the 19th century; a cist and its cover slab lie at the centre of one of the cairns and the second is visible as a scatter of stones with a second cist at its centre. The cemetery extends onto the lower lying ground east of the hillfort where four round cairns are visible.
Three of these form a compact group known as the 'Warrior Graves'. The three cairns are between 5 metres and 6 metres in diameter and range from 0.4 metres to 1 metre high. The fourth cairn lies 120 metres south east of this group and is 5 metres in diameter and 0.3 metres high. Scheduled.
On the north-east side of the hill, on which the camp is (NZ 09 NE 2) are some grave-mounds. Two of the largest have been excavated. The first was 32 feet in diameter and 5 feet high. A cist was found in the centre lying east-west and measuring 3' 8" by 1' 10" by 2' 3" deep. There was no trace of a burial. This cist can yet been seen with its covering slab lying nearby, on the lower ridge of the hill on the way to the camp, after the last stile on the footpath from Rothbury to Lordenshaws.
The second, 20 yards away, was 26 feet in diameter, 4 feet high, and a cist found in the centre completely filled with sand with no trace of bone, measured 2' 8" by 1' 8" by 1' 6" deep. There was a little charcoal together with two small pieces of pottery. A line of small stones may be traced from these burials leading up to the ridge towards the camp. (1)
(NZ 05749958) Cist (TI) (2)
Excavation report: Source of information in authority (1). (3)
Two small pieces of pottery in a barrow.(Present location not given.
Listed under "Urns known from literature only").
At Lordenshaws a burial mound approx 300 yards NE of the camp has on its margin a carefully packed standing stone 2' 6" high by 2' 0" by 1'6", deeply weathered. (4)
NZ 056993. Six cairns were definitely located on the NE slopes of the hill. Other vague mounds in the region appear to be heather-covered outcrop.
'A' NZ 05749958. The remains of a cairn with an apparent diameter of 7.5m and maximum height of 0.3m. In the centre is the cist mentioned by authorities 1 and 2. It measures 1.3m x 0.65m x 0.5m deep. The N, S and E sides are constructed of a single stone slab but the west end is of small stones packed together. The cover slab of the cist lies to the immediate south.
'B' NZ 05739959. About 15.0m NW of 'A' a scatter of stones on a slight natural rise is probably the remains of the second cairn referred to by authority 1. Insufficient remains for dimensions to be given. On the south side of this scatter is a three-sided cavity in the rocks measuring 0.8m x 0.5m x 0.5m deep. This may be the second cist described by authority 1, the dimensions being approximately the same. The present location of the two pieces of pottery mentioned as being found therein was not ascertained.
'C' NZ 05589942. The cairn refered to by authority 4 is 7.0m in diameter and 0.5m high with a hollow in centre. At least three stones of a retaining circle are still in situ. The standing stone
is in the SW quadrant and appears to be merely an extension of a line of stones, 20.0m to the south, evidently the remains of an old field boundary.
This boundary has similarities of construction with an enclosure approx 900.0m to the NNE which is mentioned in the 13th century.
'D' NZ 05639940. A cairn 8.0m in diameter and 0.5m high with a hollow in centre. At least five stones of a retaining circle are still in situ.
'E' NZ 05689929. An oval cairn measuring 7.0m x 5.0m x 1.0m high and oriented E-W. It appears to be intact.
'F' NZ 05889935. Cairn 5.0m diameter and 0.4m high. None of the cairns have any traces of a ditch and only 'C' and 'D' the remains of a retaining circle.
NZ 05739955 to NZ 05609939. The line of stones referred to by authority 1 can be traced for 200.0m. The stones are small (max ht above ground level 0.4m) and irregularly spaced and appear to demarcate the east side of an old trackway which appears in places as a slight hollow way. No evidence for dating. (5)
Cairns 'C' and 'D' by virtue of their proportions (see photographs), and the evidence of eristaliths must be classed with 'A' and 'B' as sepulchral, although all four fall in an area that shows signs of having been cleared for cultivation (see NZ 09 NE 9).
Similarly 'E' is a substantial and isolated cairn in a modern enclosure. 'F' is smaller than the other five, and its position on the fringe of stone clearance is suspect, but again it is a single
cairn in an area otherwise devoid of stone heaps. Surveyed at 1/2500. (For 1/2500 illust see NZ 09 NE 2). (6)
NZ 058 992 etc. Cup and ring marked rocks, stone rows, tumuli, cairns and Garleigh Hill stone circles and Lordenshaws camp, Hesleyhurst. Scheduled No ND/86. (7)
Authority 5's cairn C lies within the area surveyed by RCHME in December 1990 and is briefly described in the published account, where it is noted that it is in a conspicuous position when seen
from the lower ground to the east. (8)