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

West Barrow

Long Barrow


A beautiful late summer day and a walk planned along the Cotswold Way from Nympsfield long barrow to Uley Bury Hillfort then on to Hetty Pegler's Tump.

My friend (the amazing map-reading M) picked me up at the usual place in Cricklade and away we went, heading in the direction of Malmesbury. M had a little surprise tucked away; en route we went through the little village of Leighterton, deep in the rural Cotswolds; M had been studying OS Explorer 168 and spotted a long barrow just past the village school along Boxwell Road.

This is an enormous barrow and easily visible from the road; we parked in a little pull-in and donned walking boots – although on private land we were definitely up for a clamber over the three Cotswold stone walls that were between us and the barrow. Be warned about these walls though, especially the road side one – a low wide wall with a much higher drop into the next field; not really a problem until we returned.

The barrow is magnificent, reminiscent of the East Kennett Long Barrow it is a similar size – 80 metres and 6 metres high. Although it didn't appear to be on high ground there was tantalizing glimpses of harvested bales spreading out to the south of the barrow. The barrow itself is surrounded by an old Cotswold stone wall which is relatively easy to climb so we did … it is completely covered with ivy and trees (either sycamores or field maples). Clues to long past excavation in the dips where there was once possibly an entrance to the barrow, however, this is no longer in evidence.

A few scrapes and scratches to show for this one, but so well worth it.
tjj Posted by tjj
7th September 2010ce
Edited 8th September 2010ce

Comments (2)

My friend M doesn't post here but like many people drops by for a read. I received this in an email this morning so am adding it as a comment:

It definitely was on high ground, but not on a significant hill. What I mean is
that the slopes of the hill were not very noticeable.
I'm intrigued by it's "proper" name - West Barrow. Does this imply that there
is, or was, an East Barrow somewhere nearby?
tjj Posted by tjj
8th September 2010ce
I've been here a couple of times and there is a way to the barrow without having to climb 3 walls. I think I parked somewhere on the road to the north and went through a gate.... Still had to climb the wall enclosing the barrow though.
I'm not 100% sure though, the OS maps are lost in a pile of boxes...
juamei Posted by juamei
11th September 2010ce
You must be logged in to add a comment