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Fairy Oak Round Barrow

Round Barrow(s)

Nearest Town:Wrexham (1km NNW)
OS Ref (GB):   SJ331496 / Sheet: 117
Latitude:53° 2' 20.76" N
Longitude:   2° 59' 52.36" W

Added by treaclechops


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Fieldnotes

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A large round barrow dominates a green sward belonging to a Victorian villa in Wrexham, Jewel of North Wales. Fairy Oak lies within the grounds of a Victorian walled garden, with neatly trimmed lawns (as if for croquet), and busy traffic the other side of the red brick walls.

The grassy, rotund barrow - about seven feet high or so, and probably not dissimilar in size to Churn Knob - takes up most of the garden. One huge and clearly ancient oak tree grows out of the southern side of the barrow, whilst an equally huge chestnut springs forth from the south-western corner.

The owners of the property have plonked two fairy silhouette figurines (of the type found at a garden centre near you), on the barrow, the elvish characters racing their way across to the chestnut tree. Sweet. Corny. Inevitable. The trees themselves provide a wonderful amount of shade and a sepulchral, cathedral-like quality to this well-kept round barrow. The house is called 'Fairy Mount', and can be found on 'Fairy Road'. Splendid that the ancient structure is commemorated in the name of the street - even though it is invisible from the road.

The house has just come onto the market - and I can't afford it! Bah!
treaclechops Posted by treaclechops
15th November 2004ce
Edited 15th November 2004ce

Folklore

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Naturally as you would expect, this barrow had a tradition of fairies seen dancing and playing round it. According to J C Davies's 'Folklore of West and Mid Wales' (1911) (noted in Bord's 'Fairy Sites' of 2004), prior to it being included in a garden it stood in Fairy Field, and the oak tree itself stood on top of it. Bones and pottery were found when it was excavated in 1882. Perhaps you know whether fairies are still seen here - the Royal Mail certainly believes (scroll down the article at http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/wales/2205201.stm).

Not far away is another barrow, perhaps also saved by the grace of gardeners, known as Hillbury. The idea of a fairy oak and a fairy mount is reminiscent of Irish fairy folklore?
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
2nd February 2005ce