The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

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Great Orme Mine (Ancient Mine / Quarry) — News

The Ancient Copper mines dug by children

From the summit of the Great Orme, the landscape looks as peaceful as it is striking – all rolling green hills and farmland stretching out to the blue Irish Sea.

But the headland that rises over Llandudno, Wales has a secret, one that lay buried for thousands of years.
More than five miles (8km) of tunnels run beneath the hill's surface. Spreading across nine different levels and reaching 230 feet (70m) deep, some are so narrow that only children would be small enough to access them.
These are the tunnels of a copper mine: one that was first dug out some 3,800 years ago and that, within a couple of centuries, was the largest in Britain.


Soulbury (Standing Stone / Menhir) — Images (click to view fullsize)

<b>Soulbury</b>Posted by moss

Boscawen-Un (Stone Circle) — Links

The Cornish Collection: Boscawen-un Stone Circle

The first in a new series highlighting Cornwall’s megalithic masterpieces. One: Boscawen-un Stone Circle. Roy Goutte.

West Yorkshire — News

Cairn building walkers are dismantling the heritage of Yorkshire Dales

The tradition of building cairns and wind breaks in the Yorkshire Dales has begun to put the area’s history at risk according to the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority (YDNPA).
Robert White, Senior Conservation Officer for the YDNPA, says the rocks walkers are using are sometimes being taken from ancient sites including burial mounds, which has led to problems at a number of historically-important sites within the National Park, including Beamsley Beacon near Bolton Abbey.” .
“During the Bronze Age, some 4,500 years ago, a large stone mound was built there, probably to mark the burial place of a local chieftain and to act as a territorial boundary marker,” explained Robert.
“Much of this cairn, which is now about 11m in diameter, still survives but in recent years it has suffered a lot of disturbance due to people using stones from it to make modern cairns and wind breaks. Another smaller historic cairn lies further along the ridge at Old Pike and that has also lost some of its stones.”

And so it goes on.....

East Riding of Yorkshire — News

'Hugely important' iron age remains found at Yorkshire site

Update on an archaeological dig at Pocklington....

Almost 2,000 years after being buried, the remarkably well-preserved remains of 150 skeletons and their personal possessions have been discovered in a small market town at the foot of the Yorkshire Wolds.

The remains of the burial ground that contained skeletons of people from the middle-iron age Arras culture in Pocklington, east Yorkshire is being hailed as one of the largest and most significant iron age findings of recent times.

Some of the 75 square barrows – burial chambers – contained personal possessions such as jewellery and weapons. Archaeologists have also discovered a skeleton with a shield.

It is believed the site dates to the iron age, which in Britain lasted from 800BC until the time of the Roman conquest, which started in AD43.


Bryn Celli Ddu (Chambered Cairn) — Links

Artist Report: Angela Davies at Bryn Celli Ddu

Star Carr (Mesolithic site) — News

Stone Age Britons may have had prehistoric secret code

Stone Age Britons may have developed a prehistoric secret code.

Mysterious markings engraved on an 11,000 year old pendant found in Yorkshire suggest that the area’s ancient Mesolithic inhabitants used a system of long and short lines to represent events or objects in numerical form.

The markings appear to have been inscribed on the pendant in a deliberately faint way – and archaeologists suspect that that may have been in order to render many of them almost invisible when not being examined closely.

The site they were discovered on – at Star Carr in the Vale of Pickering – was used for ritual activities – probably ceremonial dances performed by prehistoric shamans.


Carn Meini (Rocky Outcrop) — News

Stonehenge tourist bosses demand visitors stop chipping stones and selling them on eBay

"To take fragments from Carn Menyn is to violate a part of our heritage which has been valued for over 4,000 years" Geoffrey Wainwright

A quarry which scientists have recently identified as being the source of Stonehenge’s famous rocks is being plundered at a “terrifying rate” by thieves selling them on eBay for £8, tourism bosses say.
Preseli bluestone can only be found on the Preseli Hills which runs the spine of Pembrokeshire, West Wales.
The stones were cut from rock and transported 160 miles to Stonehenge on Salisbury Plain to form the iconic circle around 5,000 years ago still stands today.

Must Farm Logboats — News

Bronze Age wheel at 'British Pompeii' Must Farm an 'unprecedented find'

A complete Bronze Age wheel believed to be the largest and earliest of its kind found in the UK has been unearthed.
The 3,000-year-old artefact was found at a site dubbed "Britain's Pompeii", at Must Farm in Cambridgeshire.
Archaeologists have described the find - made close to the country's "best-preserved Bronze Age dwellings" - as "unprecedented".
Still containing its hub, the 3ft-diameter (one metre) wooden wheel dates from about 1,100 to 800 BC.
The wheel was found close to the largest of one of the roundhouses found at the settlement last month.

More on the Bronze Age wheel discovery
Its discovery "demonstrates the inhabitants of this watery landscape's links to the dry land beyond the river", David Gibson from Cambridge Archaeological Unit, which is leading the excavation, said.


Whitehawk Camp (Causewayed Enclosure) — Links

Artists create film about one of UK's first Neolithic ritual monuments

Wales (Country) — News

A Bill To Make History – Legislation To Protect Wales’ Past To Become Law

Summary of the Bill’s provisions

To give more effective protection to listed buildings and scheduled monuments

Extension of the definition of a scheduled monument
The Welsh Ministers will be able to recognise and protect any nationally important sites that provide evidence of past human activity.

Amendments to the criminal offences and defences for damage to scheduled monuments
The Bill will make it easier to bring cases of unlawful damage or destruction of scheduled monuments to prosecution by limiting the defence of ignorance of a monument’s status or location. The accused will have to be able to show that all reasonable steps had been taken to find out if a scheduled monument would be harmed or destroyed by their actions.

Powers of entry for the archaeological investigation of ancient monuments in danger of damage or destruction
If an ancient monument is at immediate risk of damage or destruction, the Welsh Ministers will be able to authorise archaeological excavations without the owner’s consent. This new power, which will help to rescue valuable information about Welsh history, will only be used in exceptional cases.

Introduction of enforcement and temporary stop notices for scheduled monuments
Temporary stop notices will give the Welsh Ministers powers to put an immediate halt to unauthorised works or other damage to scheduled monuments. They will be able to use complementary enforcement notices to order repairs to monuments or the fulfilment of scheduled monument consent conditions without going to court.

Springfield Lyons Causewayed Enclosure — Images

<b>Springfield Lyons Causewayed Enclosure</b>Posted by moss<b>Springfield Lyons Causewayed Enclosure</b>Posted by moss<b>Springfield Lyons Causewayed Enclosure</b>Posted by moss

Springfield Lyons Causewayed Enclosure — Fieldnotes

The following was written in May 2011, and therefore is an old blog. All I can say though is that they had built a huge building over it by the time we had left!

Today we visited Springfield Lyons just up the road. Set in the centre of business and retail centres this late Bronze Age enclosure has something of a wow factor close up. From the road you can see the large banks (spoil heaps from the excavation) that surround an inner ditch broken by 6 causeways. So a 'causewayed enclosure' maybe, but it must not be forgotten that it was also used by early Saxons as a pagan cemetery and later as a settlement.

A description of this site must begin with its half wild aspect, today you approach through thickets of blackthorn and briar roses, the banks loom large covered with similar material. The central rounded area is grass eaten down to the root, rabbits must run amok, if their pellets are anything to go by. LS also glimpsed a fox, in excellent condition, his restaurant was well stocked!

The ditches had some water in them and reeds testified to their marshyness, but of course in these drought months we are experiencing the ditches are drying out.

It has been excavated in the past several times, and the ground is full of holes in which regenerating elm tries to take hold. The explanation given for the late Bronze Age occupation, (approximately 800 bc) is that it may have been a fortified stronghold for a local chief. Excavation has shown that there is a large central hut facing the gateway with an elaborate porch, which would probably have been his home. There was also a working area and it was here that two moulds for making swords were found at the terminals of one of the causeways, of a type called Ewart Park, but no metal elsewhere.

There was also evidence of Iron Age recognition of the site, a 'broken' sword was found in the centre of the circular area in a pit and further to the west of the pit a horse skull was found with an iron bit and two studs. Presumably a ritual burial of some kind.

The banks are in fact very large spoil heaps, the actual bank would have been inside the segmented ditches. There would have been a wooden type 'verandah, all the way round the bank, giving a roofed walking/working area. Looking at the interim report on the excavation, and an artistic representation shows a very neat settlement set in an idyllic pastoral countryside. There is also an early photograph of the fields before development took place and it descended into what we see today. The area had been ploughed flat over the centuries before the excavation, so what we see now is the excavated ditches.

The pagan Saxon cremation cemetery had the usual range of intricately worked Saxon brooches also metalwork, including a funny rounded hat and of course beads, twelve strings were found, and it is though that the beads hung between pairs of the brooches; the brooches of course clasping the dress at the shoulder. There were some 225 certain or possible burials,of which 103 were certain inhumation burials but the cremation pots had been buried very close to the surface, and the surface was to a degree ploughed out.

Given its close proximity to houses, there is a lot of rubbish around, some dumped in the ditch, and the site looks distinctly uncared for. Not sure of its scheduling as far as a monument goes, but it is in grave danger of being built over.

Just down the road, and starting from the Asda car park is a Neolithic cursus, excavated about 30 years ago, when this area of suburban houses was being built, it followed the line of the river before you reach the mill at the Fox and Raven pub.

Interesting in itself but not part of this blog. Now whether this earlier monument had anything to do with the settlement at Springfield Lyons is a matter of conjecture.

Edit - a link;

The Thornborough Henges — News

Solar farm sparks fears for 'Stonehenge of the North'

A GOVERNMENT service which champions England's heritage has condemned a scheme to site a 960-panel solar farm near the most important ancient site between Stonehenge and the Orkney Islands.

Historic England said the small-scale renewable energy scheme at East Tanfield, near Ripon, could harm the neighbouring Thornborough Henge Scheduled Monument complex, which featured ritual structures, massive circular ditches and banks dating back 4,000 years to the Bronze Age.

North Yorkshire County Council archaeologist Lucie Hawkins has called for the application to be withdrawn, stating she was disappointed the plan had been submitted to Hambleton District Council without any assessment of the impact on the historic environment.

Development consultants Arrowsmith Associates said Richard Alton, the owner of Rushwood Hall, once the seat of the Nussey baronetcy and home to Teesside steelworks artist Viva Talbot, was seeking to provide energy for the crop services business based at the hall and a number of cottages.

A spokesman for the firm said the application site, 500 metres from the henges and medieval village, was not close enough to either of these to have any impact on them.
He added the solar panels would be completely screened by trees and their impact on the landscape, which also includes East Tanfield deserted medieval village, would be negligible.

He said: "What public views would exist would be seen in the context of an ever increasing acceptance that such sites are part of the modern rural landscape, as supported by government policy."

Objecting to the scheme, Historic England said the solar panels would represent "a distinctly modern intervention" in a sensitive landscape of regional, national and international historical significance, with the henge complex being "one of the pre-eminent prehistoric landscape complexes in Britain".

Its ancient monuments inspector Keith Emerick said: "The henges are part of a ritual landscape that extends beyond the surrounding wetlands to Catterick in the north and south to Ferrybridge.

"Only four henge sites in the British Isles are larger, all in Wiltshire and Dorset, and nowhere else are there three closely-spaced and identical henge monuments. The northernmost henge is believed to be the best-preserved henge monument in the country."

Mr Emerick said part of the site's importance was that it was located within a bowl, which had a lack of "overtly modern intrusion".

Proposals to screen the site, he said, a regional hub in the social, economic and religious life of many widely dispersed groups in the Neolithic era, were temporary and changeable.

Wales (Country) — Links

John Piper - The Mountains of Wales

This autumn Plas Glyn-y-Weddw is delighted to present an outstanding group of views in Snowdonia by John Piper from the collections of Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales.

On to the 13th December 2015

Duddo Five Stones (Stone Circle) — News

Duddo Stone Circle wind turbine bid refused by government minister Greg Clark

Picked up from the 'Stone Pages' Good news it seems.

Plans for a wind turbine close to Northumberland’s answer to Stonehenge have been thrown out by the government.

The proposal less than two miles from the 4,000-year-old Duddo Stone Circle has been rejected by minister for communities and local government Greg Clark.

The decision follows a lengthy planning battle which saw the government opt not to defend a planning inspector’s decision to give the turbine the go-ahead in the High Court, following a protest led by a cross-party group of North East peers and the Bishop of Newcastle.


Links of Noltland (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork) — News



The find includes a very rare Bronze Age building which experts believed could have been a sauna or steam house, which may have been built for ritual purposes.

EASE Archaeology recently made the exciting discovery on the periphery of the prehistoric Links of Noltland, on the island of Westray in Orkney, next to where the famous ‘Westray Wife’ was found in 2009, which is believed to be the earliest depiction of a human face in Britain.


Durrington Walls (Henge) — News

Stonehenge researchers 'may have found largest prehistoric site'

Standing stones found buried near Stonehenge could be the "largest" intact prehistoric monument ever built in Britain, archaeologists believe.
Using ground-penetrating radar, some 100 stones were found at the Durrington Walls "superhenge", a later bank built close to Stonehenge.

The Stonehenge Living Landscapes team has been researching the ancient monument site in a five-year project.

Finding the stones was "fantastically lucky", researchers said.
The stones may have originally measured up to 4.5m (14ft) in height and had been pushed over the edge of Durrington Walls.

The site, which is thought to have been built about 4,500 years ago, is about 1.8 miles (3km) from Stonehenge, Wiltshire.

The stones were found on the edge of the Durrington Walls "henge", or bank, an area which had not yet been studied by researchers.
Lead researcher, Vince Gaffney said the stones were "lost to archaeology" but found thanks to modern technology.

National Trust archaeologist Dr Nick Snashall said: "In the field that lies to the south we know there's a standing stone which is now the only standing stone, now fallen, that you can go up to and touch in the whole of the Stonehenge landscape," he said.
"It's called the Cuckoo Stone.

"If there are stones beneath the bank... they're probably looking at stones of pretty much the same size as the Cuckoo Stone."

Dr Snashall added there was a "sense" of one area set aside for the living and another for the dead at Durrington Walls - and that had changed over time.
The findings are being announced later on the first day of the British Science Festival being held at the University of Bradford.

Cairn L (Passage Grave) — News

Ancient Irish were first to record an eclipse – 5,355 years ago

Our ancient Irish ancestors carved images of an ancient eclipse into giant stones over 5,000 years ago, on November 30, 3340 BC to be exact. This is the oldest known recorded solar eclipse in history.

The illustrations are found on the Stone Age “Cairn L,” on Carbane West, at Loughcrew, outside Kells, in County Meath. The landscape of rolling hills is littered with Neolithic monuments. Some say that originally there were at least 40 to 50 monuments, but others say the figure was more like 100.

“Cairn L” received a mention in Astronomy Ireland’s article: “Irish Recorded Oldest Known Eclipse 5355 Years Ago.” They write that the Irish Neolithic astronomer priests recorded the events on three stones relating to the eclipse, as seen from that location.


Avebury (Stone Circle) — News

Neolithic house discovery at Avebury stone circle dig

Archaeologists believe they may have found the remains of a house where people who built Avebury stone circle may have lived.

The three-week Between the Monuments project is researching the daily lives of Neolithic and Bronze Age residents at the Wiltshire site.

The dig is being led by The National Trust and Southampton and Leicester University archaeologists.

The National Trust said if it is a house they will have "hit the jackpot".

Spokesman Dr Nick Snashall said: "I could count the number of middle Neolithic houses that have been found on the fingers of one hand.

"This site dates from a time when people are just starting to build the earliest parts of Avebury's earthworks, so we could be looking at the home and workplace of the people who saw that happening."


Star Carr (Mesolithic site) — Links

Skulls, shamans and Sacrifice in Stone Age Britain

The Mesolithic settlement of Star Carr in North Yorkshire has fascinated archaeologists for decades. Nicky Milner and her digging team from York University are embarking on their final ever excavation on site to unlock the secrets of this mysterious landscape.

Dorset — News

The boneyard of the bizarre that rewrites our Celtic past to include hybrid-animal monster myths

Ancient Mediterranean cultures thought nothing of splicing different animals together to form fantastical mythical beasts, such as the half-lion, half-goat chimera or the half-lion, half-eagle griffin.

Until now, however, ancient Britons were not credited with such imagination. That is all about to change following the discovery of a series of animal skeletons near Winterborne Kingston in Dorset, which raises the possibility that Britain’s ancient Celtic population had hybrid-animal monster myths similar to those of the ancient Greeks, Mesopotamians and Egyptians.


Jug's Grave (Cairn(s)) — News

Sun-disc from the dawn of history goes on display in Wiltshire for summer solstice

Stonehenge sun-disc from the dawn of history goes on display in Wiltshire for summer solstice

Wiltshire Museum will exhibit a gold 'Stonehenge sun-disc', which may have been worn on clothing or a head-dress
Marking this year’s summer solstice an early Bronze Age sun-disc, one of the earliest metal objects found in Britain, has gone on display for the first time at Wiltshire Museum.

Archaeologists believe the disc was forged in about 2,400 BC, soon after the great sarsen stones were put up at Stonehenge. It is thought it was worn on clothing to represent the sun.

The sun-disc, one of only six such finds, was discovered in a burial mound at Monkton Farleigh, just 20 miles from Stonehenge.

It was found during excavations by Guy Underwood in 1947 along with a pottery beaker, flint arrowheads and fragments of the skeleton of an aWe have the best Bronze Age collections in Britain and we are delighted to be able to display this incredibly rare sun-disk through the generosity of the donors,” said David Dawson, Museum Director.

Preserved by Dr Denis Whitehead since its discovery, the sun-disc was seen by the museum's archaeologists the first time was when he brought it to the opening of the Prehistory Galleries in 2013.

It joins and unparallelled collection of Bronze Age treasures at the Museum dating to the time of Stonehenge and worn by people who worshiped inside the stone circle. Chief among them are the famous golden Bush Barrow treasures found in the Normanton Down Barrows less than a mile from Stonehenge.

The sun-disc is a thin embossed sheet of gold with a cross at the centre, surrounded by a circle. Between the lines of both the cross and the circle are fine dots which glint in sunlight.

Pierced by two holes, it is thought the disc, which is the size of a two pence piece and not much thicker than aluminium cooking foil, could have been sewn to a piece of clothing or a head-dress.

Until recently it had been presumed that early Bronze Age gold may have come from Ireland, but thanks to new scientific techniques developed at Southampton University evidence suggests the gold may have originated from Cornwall.

Presented to the museum in memory of Dr Whitehead, it has now been cleaned by the Wiltshire Council Conservation Service and placed on display in time for this year’s mid-summer solstice.

HareHaugh Hillfort — News

Volunteers shore up crumbling ramparts of landmark Northumberland hillfort

Volunteers from Northumberland National Park have seen the culmination of many years of work as major conservation started this week to repair the crumbling ramparts of Harehaugh Hillfort in Coquetdale.

Harehaugh Hillfort was built by Iron Age people 2,500 years ago and the essential conservation work now underway will see the hillfort finally removed from the Heritage at Risk register.
he work to save the hillfort is a direct result of more than 20 years of research, excavation and monitoring by archaeologists from Newcastle University that has been funded by Northumberland National Park Authority, Historic England and Natural England.

National Park volunteers and staff have been helping to fill 2,000 sandbags with organic topsoil to restore the profile of the badly-eroded sections of rampart.

A layer of wire mesh will be laid over and across the sandbags and buried beneath a fresh layer of soil and organic grass seed to discourage burrowing animals from returning.

The repair work will utilise 60 tonnes of organic soil and the number of hessian sandbags used equals approximately one sandbag for each year of the hillfort’s life.

continued on the following link.....

Cornwall — News

Cornwall was scene of prehistoric gold rush, says new research

David Keys in the Independent article....

New archaeological research is revealing that south-west Britain was the scene of a prehistoric gold rush.

A detailed analysis of some of Western Europe’s most beautiful gold artefacts suggests that Cornwall was a miniature Klondyke in the Early Bronze Age.

Geological estimates now indicate that up to 200 kilos of gold, worth in modern terms almost £5 million, was extracted in the Early Bronze Age from Cornwall and West Devon’s rivers – mainly between the 22nd and 17th centuries BC.

New archaeological and metallurgical research suggests that substantial amounts were exported to Ireland, with smaller quantities probably also going to France. It also suggests that the elites of Stonehenge almost certainly likewise obtained their gold from the south-west peninsula, as may the rulers of north-west Wales, who took to wearing capes made of solid gold.


High Banks (Cup and Ring Marks / Rock Art) — Links

Heritage Landscape Creativity

Druid Landscapes

Excellent blog on the history of this rock art.

Newton Mulgrave Long Barrow — Links

Newton Mulgrave long barrow

Details of the long barrow, slightly mauled by time, but evidence of long barrows (of which there are very few) on the North Yorkshire Moors.

Great Orme Mine (Ancient Mine / Quarry) — News

National Trust spends £1m to secure precious archaeological site on Great Orme in North Wales

A chunk of the Great Orme, the imposing limestone headland on the North Wales coast which is home to Britain’s largest prehistoric mine and a herd of Kashmiri goats acquired from Queen Victoria, has been secured by the National Trust.

The £1m purchase of a large farm on the promontory overlooking the resort of Llandudno is the latest acquisition by the Trust’s 50-year-old Neptune campaign to protect special areas of coastline under threat of development.

The 140-acre Parc Farm will now be managed to promote the Orme’s status as one of Britain’s most important botanical sites as well as an area rich in archaeology, including the underground workings of the biggest Bronze Age copper mine in the UK.

The purchase means that the Trust has now secured 574 miles of coastline in England, Wales and Northern Ireland since the Neptune campaign was begun half a century ago in May 1965.

The Calderstones (Cup and Ring Marks / Rock Art) — Links

History of Calderstones

Article written by George Nash and Adam Stanford

Wales (Country) — News

Heritage bill to protect monuments in Wales

A new law to protect historical monuments and buildings in Wales aims to make it more difficult for those who damage them to escape prosecution.
It comes after 119 cases of damage to sites between 2006 and 2012 resulted in only one successful prosecution.
The Historic Environment (Wales) Bill will give ministers powers to make owners who damage monuments undertake repairs.
Councils can also take action to stop decay by recovering urgent work costs.
In 2013, a stretch of the 1,200-year-old Offa's Dyke, on privately owned land between Chirk and Llangollen, was found flattened....

This is good news and hopefully extends to prehistoric monuments..

The Calderstones (Cup and Ring Marks / Rock Art) — News

Calderstones archaeological project aims to dig up evidence of prehistoric scousers

Calderstones park is hosting an archaeological dig to uncover Liverpool’s buried history and possibly the remnants of the prehistoric scousers.

The south Liverpool park is playing host to a series of heritage activities until May 8 as part of the Connect Calderstones project by The Reader Organisation.

Two of the three trenches which have been dug are near the historic mansion house and have been placed there as they are the most likely to uncover historic evidence.

The third trench is further away closer to the actual neolithic Calderstones. The hope is that this trench will date back closer to the stone age and prehistoric era.

Richard MacDonald, from The Reader Organisation, said: “As the park has never been built on there could be anything under our feet. We may even find evidence of the first humans to live in this area - relics of the earliest scousers!”

After just three days of the dig, which is open to the public, and a foot of top soil there is evidence of life from 50-100 years ago as well as the unearthing of pottery which is 200 years old.

Richard said: “This is hands on for locals who love getting involved in their history.”

There are no professional archaeologists at the dig and it is the first time Calderstones has been accessible to the public for an excavation such as this.

Richard said: “Diggers are from the local community and volunteers, without these the dig would not be possible.”

Through ‘The Big Dig Blog’ at up to the minute information about the dig can be found as it happens.

Richard said: “The Calderstones are of national importance and this dig is an exciting opportunity for people in the local area to get involved in a community dig and support The Reader’s plans for the future.”

More info on following link....

Note; The Calderstones are elsewhere and not near this amateur dig.

Stonehenge and its Environs — News

From 'druidical erection' to Spinal Tap: a history of Stonehenge as tourist site

It has been a place of pilgrimage for many centuries and a tourist attraction probably since Roman times.

But a new exhibition opening at Stonehenge on Friday tells the fascinating story of how the monument developed from a crumbling curiosity in Victorian times to one of the world’s most visited sites, drawing in more than 1 million people a year.

Over the past 15 years, the archeologist, broadcaster and writer, Julian Richards, has collected hundreds of books, souvenirs, postcards and pictures related to the prehistoric monument.

His “Stonehengiana” – as he terms it – ranges from lurid pink pottery adorned with a picture of the great circle to the earliest guidebooks with lovely black and white illustrations but some, frankly, odd conclusions about the history of the site.

The exhibition, called Wish You Were Here, also reveals how 20th century advertisers used the image of Stonehenge to sell everything from cars to beer and the fascination rock bands and comic writers have with the ancient stones.........

Keep reading on the link below...

Louden Stone Circle — Links

The Heritage Trust

Back from the Brink - Part two

Hautville's Quoit (Standing Stone / Menhir) — Links


Hautville’s Quoit and other archaeological investigations at Stanton Drew, 2012

There is a further 2013 report of The Big Ground Mound and its relationship to Stanton Drew Stone Circles at......

East Riding of Yorkshire — News

Skeletons and jewellery in square barrows come from Iron Age East Yorkshire tribe

Archaeologists say dozens of square barrows found in an East Yorkshire market town contained the skeletons and goods of people from the Arras Culture, living in the region in the Middle Iron Age between the 1st century BC and the Roman invasion.

A set of excavations at Burnby Lane, in Pocklington, have investigated 16 barrows and revealed a further ten during construction works to create housing.

“We already know that the area has prehistoric heritage, so we’re very interested to discover what these findings could reveal about prehistoric society and, of course, what we can learn about our ancestors,” says Paula Ware, of MAP Archaeology Practice.


More information about the Parisi tribe here...

Flintshire, Denbighshire and Wrexham (Region) — News

Ancient gold artefacts uncovered in north Wales

The Late Bronze Age hoard of two 'lock' gold rings were discovered in the Community of Rosset. The wearer would've been a person of wealth and status within Late Bronze Age Society, between 10000 and 800BC.

In terms of their use, archaeologists aren't certain whether they were used as ear-rings or worn to gather locks of hair, as the name suggests.

In Wales, lock-rings have previously been found at Gaerwen, Anglesey, the Great Orme, Conwy and Newport, Pembrokeshire.

This largely coastal pattern hints at possible trading and communication links between Late Bronze Age communities living in Wales and Ireland....

Further information...

Llanmelin Wood (Hillfort) — Links

Heritage of Wales News

New archaeological survey for Llanmelin Wood Hillfort

Craigmaddie Muir (Chambered Tomb) — Links

Borne of Stone

Louden Stone Circle — Links

The Heritage Trust

'Back From The Brink': The re-exposure of the buried ring stones at Louden Stone Circle.

Northern Ireland — News

Huge ringed fort is thought to date back 4,500 years to Neolithic times

Archeologists are probing a Neolithic henge in the middle of Aghagallon which they believe dates back more than 4,500 years. It the reason why Aghagallon has its name and now the Standing Stone is to be given its proper place in history.

Aghagallon, translated from Gaelic means Field of the Standing Stone, and it was just a few years ago that its true significance was uncovered when they discovered the giant ringed site.

For many years it was unclear where this standing stone might be, however when the local community association made plans to extend its building on the Aghalee Road, it was discovered that they were right beside the standing stone.

The ringed site which is in the townland of Derrynaseer was designated as a scheduled historic monument in 2003.

It is formed by a large earthen bank which encloses a domed area some 180m in diameter and is clearly visible on Google Earth.
read on.....

Dunmail Raise (Cairn(s)) — Links

Mountains of Meaning

Blessington Demesne 1 (Round Barrow(s)) — News

Ex-Garda ‘likely to have disturbed human remains’ at protected monument

RETIRED GARDA is likely to have “removed and disturbed human remains” when he damaged a Bronze Age burial mound in County Wicklow, a court has heard.
Tony (also known as Thomas) Hand, aged 69, had denied interfering with the national monument at Carrig, Blessington by taking stones from the protected site on the night of 4 May, 2011.
However following a week-long trial at Bray Circuit Court, he was convicted yesterday of criminal damage to the prehistoric stone circle.


There are two sites of this name, Desmene 1 and 2, so it could be either....

Carwynnen Quoit (Dolmen / Quoit / Cromlech) — News

More than a pile of stones: The archaeological quest at a burial chamber in Neolithic Cornwall

Jacky Nowakowski, the Lead Archaeologist with the Cornwall Archaeological Unit, on the amazing restoration of the Carwynnen Quoit megalith.

The chamber belongs to a class of portal dolmens
"When the three granite uprights and the massive capstone collapsed in the 1960s earth tremor, they created a heap of stones which protected the ground beneath.

During the ensuing 50 years of land clearance, more large stones were heaped up onto the pile. These continued to ensure that the original area of the monument chamber was protected from later damage by ploughing.

The floor of the monument, an intact stone pavement, is made up of a narrow strip of compacted small stones which formed a hard-standing surface arranged in a doughnut-like circuit.

This embraced the central part, made up of slightly larger stones pressed firmly into the soil beneath.

More than 2,000 finds were made in our 2012 test pits and Big Dig trench, covering a wide variety of objects dating to all ages.

The main discovery was the partial survival of a remarkable stone pavement on the footprint of the original Neolithic monument, made up of small stones mainly of granite with some quartz pieces covering an area of approximately 5.5m² under topsoil.......

And there is much more on this community spirited archaeological excavation.....

Article by Ben Miller.

Stonehenge and its Environs — News

Stonehenge parking expansion planned after transport issues

A planning application to provide more parking spaces and resurface the overflow car park at Stonehenge is to go before the local authority.

English Heritage said the work would create about 25 additional coach parking spaces and ensure high volumes of visitors can park in wet weather.

People had complained of inadequate transport facilities at the site when a new £27m visitor centre opened in 2014.

A shuttle bus scheme had proven unable to cope with the influx of visitors.

English Heritage said that over the course of the year it had looked at areas of the visitor experience that "need to be improved" and is now "taking steps to address them".........

More to be found here:

Somerset — Links

The Lost Stone Circles of North Somerset

Stonehenge and its Environs — News

Stonehenge World Heritage Site at risk from A303 tunnel plans

An excellent analysis by Kate Fielden(CPRE) in the Ecologist on that fraught subject of the tunnel by Stonehenge.

The government's plans to tunnel the A303 under the Stonehenge World Heritage Site has one grievous flaw, writes Kate Fielden. The tunnel is too short, so huge portals and graded junctions at both ends would lie entirely within the WHS causing huge damage to landscape and wipe out archaeological remains...

See the article at:

Jersey — News

Archaeologists in Jersey find solid gold torc hidden in Celtic coin hoard

Archaeologists in Jersey find solid gold torc hidden in Celtic coin hoard
By Richard Moss

A Celtic coin hoard discovered on Jersey has been offering up its secrets and astounding archaeologists with a series of golden treasure finds.

For the last two weeks, the Jersey Heritage hoard conservation team have been excavating in an area known to contain gold jewellery and late last week, one end of a solid gold torc was uncovered.

The find comes on the back of several finds within the hoard including two other solid gold torcs, one gold plated and one of an unknown alloy, along with a silver brooch and a crushed sheet gold tube. But the latest discovery is considerably larger than anything previously unearthed on the island.

A large, rigid neck ring, archaeologist say the torc has a massive decorative ‘terminal’, which is where it was probably locked closed around the owner’s neck. The terminal is formed from two solid gold wheels, each about 4cm across and 1cm wide.

So far, 10cm of the curved gold collar has been uncovered and it is not yet known how complete it is.

“It’s an incredible time here,” said Neil Mahrer, Jersey Museum Conservator. “Every hour or so we are finding a new gold object.

“We did see some gold jewellery on the surface of the hoard, but since we’ve started looking at this shoe-box sized area, we’ve uncovered a total of six torcs, five of which are gold and one which we believe to be gold-plated. This is the only one that we think is whole, though.”

The extent of the torc’s wholeness will be discovered in the next few weeks as the coins currently hiding it will be painstakingly recorded and removed.

Dr Andrew Fitzpatrick, an Iron Age jewellery expert who has been involved in studying jewellery found in other Jersey hoards has been assisting with the interpretation. He has already identified comparable features in examples found in 2nd century BC hoards at Bergien, Belgium and Niederzier, Germany.

A small stone has also been uncovered, possibly of local granite. Archaeologists say it may be no more than a pebble in the field that fell into the treasure pit during the burial, but, as it is an odd shape and size, its purpose will be investigated.

At the end of the clearing period the torc will be scanned in place to record its position to fractions of a millimetre before being removed, probably along with some of the other jewellery surrounding it.

Vespasian's Camp and Blick Mead (Hillfort) — News

Groundbreaking finds by Stonehenge team

Update for 2014.

Pre-history may have to be re-written following a recent dig by university students near Stonehenge.

Signs of human habitation 8,000 years ago have been discovered by Archaeology MA students from the University of Buckingham, led by senior research fellow David Jacques.
Mr Jacques said: “This year we’ve found burnt flint – a sign that people had made fires, so were in the area, around 8,000 years ago.

“The finds will have to be carbon-dated to get a precise date.

“It’s been wonderful that the first ever University of Buckingham archaeology students have unearthed mesolithic tools as part of the team of volunteers at the dig.”

The archaeologist, who is leading the new Archaeology MA course at the university, has just completed a two-week dig at Vespasian’s Camp, a mile from Stonehenge, at which MA students and University of Buckingham staff worked as volunteers, sifting through remains.

A number of ancient flint tools were among the finds.

More than 12,000 items from the mesolithic era (8000 – 3500BC) have been uncovered, including hunting tools, the cooked bones of aurochs – a gigantic cow-like animal – deer, wild boar, and even toads’ legs.

The finds have revealed that the site was in use continually for over 3,000 years, and could even be the reason why Stonehenge is where it is.

Mr Jacques suspects the site will contain evidence of settlements, which would be some of the earliest ever found in the UK and would completely change our understanding of this era.

Mr Jacques appeared on TV this year in BBC 1’s Operation Stonehenge and BBC 4’s The Flying Archaeologist.

And the MA students working alongside him at the dig a fortnight ago found themselves being filmed for a forthcoming episode of Horizon.

Digs at the site over the last few years have already yielded a staggering 32,000 artefacts dating from as far back as 7500BC.

Last year, the dig resulted in 8,000-year-old burnt frogs’ legs being found, revealing the delicacy was originally English and not French.

Earlier this year, carbon dating of finds from the dig led to the revelation that Amesbury is the oldest town in the country.

A previous public lecture by Mr Jacques at the university drew a packed audience.

Following the latest dig, Mr Jacques is returning to deliver another public lecture on Thursday, November 13.

The free event will take place at 6.30pm, in the Chandos Road Building, as part of the university’s autumn concert and lecture series.

In the lecture, Mr Jacques will unveil startling new evidence showing how the mesolithic period influenced the building of Stonehenge.

The lecture will focus on the area around the dig, Blick Mead, which features a natural spring, which would have attracted settlers to the area.

The warm spring water has caused stones to turn a bright puce, a colour of stone not found elsewhere in the UK.

David Jacques was elected a Fellow of the Society of the Antiquaries (FSA) in recognition of the importance of his discoveries there.
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"I once blew a blast into the Blowing Stone, which rolled a hollow wave of sepulchral sound into the hills. The megalith builders, taking their lesson from the conch-shells of the Eastern Mediterranean, blew into this very stone to summon the gods or, more probably, the goddess of the high places. Another two miles and there is the goddess herself or rather, the celtic descendant of the goddess, stretched in white and in flight across the bald brow of Uffington Hill. The downs lift to 800 feet and by their very godliness of combe and crescent, of jutting ness and plunging spur, ordain the tie beam of White Horse Hill to be one more of the holy places of the chalk. So it was on Windover Hill.... and so it is here where the Celtic town of Uffington is flanked by the galloping horse and a Neolithic workshop on the one side, and the chambered long barrow of Wayland's Smithy with its grove of beeches on the other.".......

H.J.Massingham - English Downland

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