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Holden's Firs Barrows

Barrow / Cairn Cemetery

Also known as:
  • Mortimer Common barrows

Nearest Town:Reading (11km NNE)
OS Ref (GB):   SU643649 / Sheet: 175
Latitude:51° 22' 44.26" N
Longitude:   1° 4' 33.62" W

Added by Rhiannon

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Visited 30.9.10
What a cracker of a site this is!
To the west of the village of Mortimer, on a crossroads, are two cracking barrows in a wooded clearing. (It looked to me that the site had been recently cleared judging by the amount of freshly cut tree stumps) Parking is a bit difficult and I ended up parking on the minor road on the grass verge. An excellent information board is positioned near the entrance to the field – right on the crossroads.
The Barrows are about 25 metres apart with the larger of the two about 2 metres high with a diameter of about 10 metres. There is a well defined ditch around the larger barrow. The second barrow is a bit smaller and the ditch not so well preserved.
This little site is well worth a visit when in the area – top notch.
Posted by CARL
5th October 2010ce


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Five barrows lie in a line from SE to NW: there are two bowl barrows and three bell barrows. These are in the woods of Mortimer Common. There are also a couple of outlying barrows - one now amongst the houses of Mortimer.

Jeremy Harte, in his 'Alternative Approaches to Folklore' cites that a phantom army was seen on Mortimer Common in 1778, the soldiers being assumed to be real until they vanished!
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
25th March 2004ce
Edited 30th July 2007ce