With this visit to Hunebed D52 Diever, I completed my round of all 53 hunebedden still standing in the Dutch provinces of Drenthe and Groningen. D52 consists of 14 sidestones with two closing endstones, and of the original seven capstones, six are still present, three still supported on their sidestones, the other three having slipped between theirs. Only a single entranceway stone has endured and the position of the missing one is indicated by a marker slab. There is no evidence that this dolmen ever possessed a circle of kerbstones.
At the time of his original 1918 investigation, archaeologist A E van Giffen found the hunebed in total disrepair, the stones so badly scattered that the site scarcely deserved to be described as a hunebed. Much later, in 1953/54, Van Giffen returned to restore D52, but modern archaeologists have doubts about the accuracy of his work. Van Giffen was in fact unable to determine the exact function of six of the stones, nor could he be certain of the original number of sidestones. In the event, the 14 sidestones we see today were placed upright and secured in position, and capstones added to create an almost complete hunebed. However, the result may be due more to guesswork than responsible restoration.
To visit Hunebed D52, I took the No 20 bus from Meppel station to the Kasteel bus halt in Diever. For the final 3 kilometres, it is necessary to change to another No 20 bus (travelling in the opposite direction—towards Meppel) that you will find waiting for you at Dieverbrug Bus Station. A few metres along Kasteel—the first road on the right past the bus halt—turn left along Gronigerweg, which alternates between footpath and cycle path. Continue for 750 metres till you reach a plantation of woodland on the left side of the path. D52 lies here, slightly back from the path.