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Pulpit Hill Camp (Hillfort) — Fieldnotes

Pulpit Hill - 26.9.2004

Unremarkable hill fort, but still worth the short (500m) walk up the hill from the small gravelly car parks at SP833046. The car park is on the north side of a minor road, not far from the A4010. This minor road (signposted Great Missenden, and others) comes off from a roundabout just north of Princes Risborough.

Nice, simple hill fort. Although it is on the crest of the hill, it's not a steep slope, and the surrounding trees mean the view is patchy. But without the trees this would have been a very stunning and commanding position, especially on the north side.

Well signposted from the carpark. Some of the walk is steep, and uneven. All on National Trust openland.

Dewerstone Settlement (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork) — Images (click to view fullsize)

<b>Dewerstone Settlement</b>Posted by pure joy

Dewerstone Settlement (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork) — Fieldnotes

Dewerstone Settlement - 21.6.2004

I knew nothing about this site except for what I could see on the map, which showed a semi circular earthwork on top of the hill, and a homestead within the enclosed area.

The whole area is National Trust land so it is open access. The settlement can be approached over Wigford Down (a much flatter route), or from the river valley below. Many walkers in the area park at Shaugh Bridge. Or Cadover Bridge, but this is further away. There is no vehicular access into the actual National Trust land (e.g. from Goodameavy).

There isn't much to see though, especially with the dense bracken. The paths are cleared of bracken but not the rest of the hill top. Presumably the semi circular earthwork would have cut the hill off from the rest of the downs.

The views from the nearby Dewerstone Rocks are stunning. But please treat the rocks below with care; two rock climbers died on them last year.

West Saddlesborough Hut Circles (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork) — Images

<b>West Saddlesborough Hut Circles</b>Posted by pure joy<b>West Saddlesborough Hut Circles</b>Posted by pure joy

West Saddlesborough Hut Circles (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork) — Fieldnotes

West Saddlesborough Hut Circles - 25.6.2004

See the page on the Stone Row & Cairn Circle for directions.

There are several hut circles in this area. Take your pick! I've just added pics on one of the best ones.

West Saddlesborough Cairn (Cairn(s)) — Images

<b>West Saddlesborough Cairn</b>Posted by pure joy

West Saddlesborough Cairn (Cairn(s)) — Fieldnotes

West Saddlesborough Cairn - 25.6.2004

See the page on the Stone Row & Cairn Circle for directions.

About 50 metres from the start point you should notice a cairn. It's possibly a rather ruined kerbed cairn.

West Saddlesborough Stone Row & Cairn Circle (Stone Row / Alignment) — Images

<b>West Saddlesborough Stone Row & Cairn Circle</b>Posted by pure joy<b>West Saddlesborough Stone Row & Cairn Circle</b>Posted by pure joy<b>West Saddlesborough Stone Row & Cairn Circle</b>Posted by pure joy

West Saddlesborough Stone Row & Cairn Circle (Stone Row / Alignment) — Fieldnotes

West Saddlesborough - Stone Row & Cairn Circle - 25.6.2004

I knew nothing about this site except for what I could see on the map, which showed a litter of boundary work and hut circles, plus a cairn circle and a stone row, running for about 175 metres from SX554634 to SX555636

No obvious places to park. Best I could do was to find a suitable snippet of land off the road (which runs from Cadover Bridge towards Wotter). The whole area east of the road is Access Land. Probably the simplest place to start and to get your bearings is from the road side cross and footpath (marked with a tiny ankle height marker) circa SX552634.

The area is a litter of old field boundaries and hut circles, with bracken added in for fun (however, some of it has been recently cut away from around any archaeological features). I think I found the cairn circle and stone row. About 50 metres from the start point you should notice a cairn. Another 75 metres on from this (towards Saddlesborough summit) you should start to spot a low ditch and bank of some old boundary work accompanied by the first of several hut circles in the area. The map suggested the Cairn Circle is just to the north of this. I traced some stones in a circle in this area but it as definitely one of the days when you wonder whether you are seeing stone circles because you are looking for them or because you really are in the right place? All stones were tiny except for one massive stone! By the by, as you get slightly higher there are suddenly great views south, over Plymouth and out to sea.

However the good news is that there is what seems to be a long row of stones leading away from this area, down the hill. And an easy way to spot it is to look for one of the star shaped markers in his area (see pics above). I walked the line and counted 53 stones. The row seems to curve at the end as the slope gets steeper. The row ends about seven metres from a small gulley and a sign that marks the boundary with the Shaugh Lake part of the china clay works.

Drizzlecombe Megalithic Complex — Images

<b>Drizzlecombe Megalithic Complex</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Drizzlecombe Megalithic Complex</b>Posted by pure joy

Drizzlecombe Megalithic Complex — Fieldnotes

Drizzlecombe Complex - 23.6.2004

This is such an amazing complex, but I made the cardinal sin of not having hardly any time to visit. It definately does deserve a few hours, and it a bit of a trek to get to.

Directions - Again, I basically agree with the travel instructions on the Megalithic Walks link below, but be slightly warned that despite this being marginal land everywhere there don't seem to be hardly any spaces to actually park at his so-called car park!

For the less mobile, or for those who want a more a sure footed route towards Drizzlecombe an alternative route for part of the way is to walk along the well made track towards Ditsworthy Warren House. This track starts from a fork just as you come towards the car park and winds around Gutter Tor and over to the house.

As you round Ditsworthy Warren House, you will soon seen the Drizzlecombe complex in the distance, which emphasises just how large two of the stones are. Don't be tempted (as I was, like a kid seeing a sweet shop) to head straight for the stones in the distance. It can get pretty marshy that way. As you head down the hill bear slightly right, it's definately a bit drier that way.

I can't say much about the Drizzlecombe complex except please visit, and please allow some time to marvel at all the various remains in the area. The complex is in a remarkable bowl with various hills and minor Tors hemming it in.

Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row (Stone Row / Alignment) — Links

Megalithic Walks


Directions, pics, & comments

Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row (Stone Row / Alignment) — Fieldnotes

Ringmoor Stone Row and Cairn Circle - 25.6.2004

I thought I was going mad trying to find this. I mean, how hard can it be with a map and compass, good weather, and knowing where you are starting from (Brisworthy Stone Circle)? When I did get here it seemed like a lot more that 300 metres from the Stone Circle. It was probably a mix of it being uphill, across long-ish tufty moorland, and not being able to see the cairn circle until you get pretty close to it (I had mistakenly interpreted the directions from the Megalithic Walks website link below to think it could be seen from all around - it can't be seen unless you are on the plateau). Don't be fooled into thinking that stones over to the west might be the ones you want. They aren't. Just head directly uphill (north or NNW) from the stone circle and you will find Ringmoor.

The cairn circle is nice if a little wild and windswept. You do start to get a feeling of being on the top of the world now, with views all around, and the Princeton TV Transmitter looking like you could reach out and touch it (it's actually about 8km away). The row leads away from the circle and is very clear. However, I couldn’t find the small kerbed cairn said by Burl to be about 240m along the row. At first I thought I was going mad, but then I seriously started to believe that it could have been destroyed in recent years?

By the by, the black line marked on the 1:25,000 map, going straight through the row, is not a field wall, so don't expect a large wall as I did. It's probably a reave; an ancient field boundary ditch and bank.

Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row (Stone Row / Alignment) — Images

<b>Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Ringmoor Cairn Circle and Stone Row</b>Posted by pure joy

Brisworthy Stone Circle — Fieldnotes

Brisworthy Stone Circle - 25.6.2004

Directions - I basically agree with the travel instructions on the Megalithic Walks link below. However, the hamlet of Brisworthy is definitely not the organised little cluster as the OS map suggests. It's basically a couple of very rough working farms and a few houses, so parking is not clear or in abundance. And just to clarify that after walking up the lane there only seems to be one way out of that parcel of land, towards the stone circle. As the short lane ends keep towards the left hand wall of the field (signposted as the official path) and a stile leads you into the large field / moor land, circa SX562654 (i.e. there doesn't seem to be a way out of this land directly towards to the circle). People with disabilities may obviously struggle with this stile. There is a gate next to it, but it was padlocked.

You'll then find the circle 300 metres, due east, near the field boundary. This is clearly the 'show' circle in this area. South West Dartmoor has several cairn circles, and stones in some sort of circle, but this is the only really showy stone circle.

After several days of rain, I was blessed with sun tan weather which really made a rest at the stones a lovely prospect. Views towards Trowlesorthy (south east) and Legis Tor (east) are brilliant. With a keen eye the Stone Circle can be spotted from the Trowlesorthy area, partly hidden by some of the very few trees in the area.

Technically this doesn't seem to be Access Land, but the chances of anyone stopping you seem remote, assuming you're following the basic rules of the countryside.

Brisworthy Stone Circle — Images

<b>Brisworthy Stone Circle</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Brisworthy Stone Circle</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Brisworthy Stone Circle</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Brisworthy Stone Circle</b>Posted by pure joy

Cholwich Town (destroyed) (Stone Row / Alignment) — Miscellaneous

Whilst staying in a scout hut on the edge of Dartmoor (for a National Trust working holiday on the moor) I spotted a big map on the wall. After getting my bearings I noticed a substantial stone row and cairn circle that must now be swallowed up by the expanding China Clay works.

It ran just to the east of a track that ran from Tolchmoor Gate into the workings at Cholwich Town. The stone row ran from SX584621 to 585623, ending at a cairn circle, which would have made it about 250 metres long.

North End Hut Circles (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork) — Links

Detailed info for the North End settlement


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Tibbetts Lookout Cairn (Cairn(s)) — Links

Detailed info for Tibbetts Lookout Cairn


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Tibbetts Hill Cairn (Cairn(s)) — Links

Detailed info for another of the Tibbetts Hill Cairns


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Detailed info for one of the Tibbetts Hill Cairns


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Pondsbury Barrow (Round Barrow(s)) — Links

Detailed info for another Pondsbury Barrow


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Detailed info for Pondsbury Barrow


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Tillage Field Standing Stone (Standing Stone / Menhir) — Links

Detailed info for the Tillage Field Standing Stone


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Tent Field Stones (Standing Stones) — Links

Detailed info for the Tent Field Stone


Extract from English Heritage's record of scheduled monuments, via the MAGIC site.

Please Note - this link takes you directly to a PDF document. You will need a PDF viewer such as Adobe Acrobat Reader to view it.

Meacombe Burial Chamber — Images

<b>Meacombe Burial Chamber</b>Posted by pure joy

Hendraburnick Quoit (Dolmen / Quoit / Cromlech) — Images

<b>Hendraburnick Quoit</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Hendraburnick Quoit</b>Posted by pure joy

Cranbrook Castle (Hillfort) — Images

<b>Cranbrook Castle</b>Posted by pure joy

Buttern Hill Stone Circle — Images

<b>Buttern Hill Stone Circle</b>Posted by pure joy

Trehudreth Downs Stone Setting — Images

<b>Trehudreth Downs Stone Setting</b>Posted by pure joy

Scorhill (Stone Circle) — Images

<b>Scorhill</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Scorhill</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Scorhill</b>Posted by pure joy

Shovel Down & The Long Stone (Multiple Stone Rows / Avenue) — Images

<b>Shovel Down & The Long Stone</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Shovel Down & The Long Stone</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Shovel Down & The Long Stone</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Shovel Down & The Long Stone</b>Posted by pure joy<b>Shovel Down & The Long Stone</b>Posted by pure joy

Greenbarrow Downs Cairns (Cairn(s)) — Images

<b>Greenbarrow Downs Cairns</b>Posted by pure joy
Showing 1-50 of 1,008 posts. Most recent first | Next 50
My real name is Martin, but there is already a Martin vigorously posting on this fantastic web site so I decided to use 'Pure Joy'; which was the title of the Teardrop Explodes and Julian Cope fanzine that I set up in 1988 and ran until 1991/2. Strangely my interest in ancient sites pre-dates the knowledge that Julian was also into them. However Julian's book has certainly led me to visit more, and plan holidays and pit-stops around places to visit! Studying History (and International Relations) at Uni and coming from the West Country led to a healthy fascination with ancient sites and the countryside.

I was born in 1970 in Colerne, a historic village between Bath and Chippenham (mentioned in the Domesday Book) and have spent time in Bath, Reading, Manchester, West Africa, and Ethiopia. I'm currently living near London, but itching to live in the countryside, preferably Cornwall, or Africa. Reality check! little money and inertia creep.

Most of my working life has been in the voluntary sector, usually by supporting voluntary and community groups with advice and information. I enjoy doing quite a bit of voluntary work with our Credit Union, and as an elected Council member of the National Trust.

I'm no photography expert but I like to take photos (nearly always black and white) of places I visit. Some of the earlier ones looked good but it was only with a £25 point and shoot camera that was amazing unreliable. I've now got an old Pentax SLR, but at the moment I refuse to use filters and special effects. You get what you see.

Up side of ancient site = the sense of history, the countryside, the walk, the sense of adventure, the tranquillity, and the weird things that sometimes happen.

Downside = the loneliness, territorial cows, and the cravings to get back to the countryside

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