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Waden Hill

Barrow / Cairn Cemetery

<b>Waden Hill</b>Posted by ChanceImage © Chance - May 2013
Nearest Town:Marlborough (8km E)
OS Ref (GB):   SU105690 / Sheet: 173
Latitude:51° 25' 9.75" N
Longitude:   1° 50' 56.34" W

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<b>Waden Hill</b>Posted by Chance <b>Waden Hill</b>Posted by Chance <b>Waden Hill</b>Posted by notjamesbond <b>Waden Hill</b>Posted by notjamesbond


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Details of Barrows on Pastscape

Avebury 20a, 50, 51, 52 & 53 plus assorted ring ditches on Waden Hill. One extant bowl barrow (50) plus the cropmark remains of eight other barrows, one of them apparently a disc barrow (20a). Two of the monuments comprise paired concentric ring ditches. No record of any excavations.

(A: SU 10366925) Tumulus (NR) (site of) (1)
A bowl barrow and group of ring ditches on Waden Hill.
(A) Avebury 50 30 paces x 1 ft. Described by Crawford as a long barrow (3).
(B) (SU 10376928) Ring-ditch AP.
(C) SU 1034 6927 Avebury 52 Bowl barrow 15 paces in dia. Ring-ditch AP.
(D) SU 1034 6929 Avebury 51 Bowl barrow 15 paces in dia. Ring-ditch AP.
(E) (SU 1034 6933) Ring-ditch AP.
(F) (SU 1032 6937) Ring-ditch AP.
(G) SU 1037 6932 Avebury 20a Disc barrow. Poss 100 ft overall dia. Ring-ditch A P.
(H) (SU 1040 6932) Ring-ditch AP.
(J) SU 1049 6944 Avebury 53 Bowl barrow 30 paces in dia. Ring-ditch AP. (2-4)

A. SU 1037 6925 Bowl barrow 22.0m dia, 0.5m high.
B. SU 1037 6928; Concentric ring ditches, 20m and 31m dia.
C. SU 1035 6928; Concentric ring ditches, 10m and 18m dia.
D. SU 1035 6929; Ring ditch 16m diameter.
E. SU 1034 6931; Ring ditch 15m diameter.
F. SU 1033 6933; Ring ditch 20m diameter.
G. SU 1037 6933; Ring ditch 34m diameter.
H. SU 1041 6934; Ring ditch 20m diameter.
J. SU 1047 6943; Ring ditch 30m diameter.
B - J are visible as AP soilmarks only but their position and dimensions suggest the sites of barrows. Surveyed at 1:2500 from OS AP's. (5)
Cropmark remains of nine probable Bronze Age round barrows recorded and described by authorities 1-5. In addition to these, there are two further barrows located at the southern end of the group: At SU 1038 6919 is a small earthwork mound, possibly a barrow, and at SU 1038 6917 is an incomplete ring ditch with a diameter of approximately 20m. (6-7)
The barrow group shows up very well on Google Earth 12/31/2002. (8)
Scheduled. For the designated record please see The National Heritage List for England. (9-10)
Chance Posted by Chance
29th October 2012ce
Edited 9th April 2013ce

Julian Cope, in his essays in the TMA book, notes how the young Kennet river nestles along the western side of Waden Hill. He suggests that Waden Hill is actually the first hill of the Avebury complex - the long hill whose shape might have inspired the longbarrows. Whether this is true, it certainly seems to have been given an important name by the Saxons - Waden Hill - or maybe Woden's, Odin's Hill - he being the god of creation of Norse myth. Could this be recognition of the hill's previous or continuing importance at the heart of the landscape?

A more tangible theory is that of the 'Silbury Game', which is dependent on the angle and height of Waden Hill as one walks along the last 4 or so miles of the Ridgeway towards the Sanctuary. As you may have seen demonstrated in Julian's TV programme, the effect is, that as you walk, the summit of Silbury Hill appears to ride on the back of Waden Hill - and this would have been all the more obvious when the chalk of the hill was white and fresh.

Waden Hill has/had a number of Bronze Age round barrows on it, and perhaps they would have later added to the effect? remaining stationary as Silbury Hill moved. (The EH record -via the Magic website - says that there were once 9 barrows on Waden Hill, but now only one is visible).

The north end still has round barrows, but a drawing by Stukeley shows a barrow on the south end. There are no traces of this on the ground now, but when it was excavated when a sewer was being put in, the snail shells that were found there showed that the barrow had been constructed in an established grazed downland.
(Archaeology in the Avebury Area. Wessex Arch. Rpt. no 8 1996)
Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
24th September 2003ce
Edited 7th April 2009ce