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

Fieldnotes by faerygirl

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Castlehowe Scar (Stone Circle)

Not only is the gate padlocked, but its also very rickety so those of us who are a little on the plumper side of slim are best photographing from the lane. The barbed wire surrounding the wall seems a little mean too. AND the farmer had parked a water butt directly behind the circle, as if to stop you from any kind of pleasure from this pretty little circle. Charming. I considered driving my car through the gate but little Ralf is already a scratched and battered mess so I opted against it.

East Bovey Head (Ancient Village / Settlement / Misc. Earthwork)

As you head back north along the road from Grimspound you can see the larger of the stones. There is space to park and just a quick walk across the bracken there are a few circles and large stones scattered about. Oh, and some sheep :)

Men-An-Tol (Holed Stone)

Ah. I had heard about it. Sang Men an Tol (Levellers classic) for many years and seen pictures of it. Everyone had told me its a dissapointment so I wasn't very hopeful. In Cornwall so I may as well...

And it was lovely. The sun was low, there was nobody else there, peaceful and calm and an easy 10 minute walk up the hill. Beautiful. You may as well go if youre down there anyway!

Oh, any guesses about those large stones used in the wall on the opposite side of the track on your way up? They just seemed too BIG and oddly positioned to be just wall stones. I like to speculate...

Grimspound & Hookney Tor

A settlement? Some of these "buildings" are not big enough to lie down in, let alone get your family in. Feels more like a graveyard to me. Any guesses why the entrance is so strangely aligned. Facing uphill seemed like the wrong way to be pointed. It did align with the entrance to whatever is on the hill to the north though.

The Hoar Stone (Chambered Tomb)

We drove past it, TWICE and still had to ask directions! The lady looked at us like we were crazy and then just pointed at it from where we were standing. Felt a bit like a fool...

Mein Hirion (Standing Stones)

After seeing the sign in the village (even thats not that easy to find!), we got a rough idea of the hill these stones were on and headed in that direction. Light was fading fast so we opted against the long walk round that the visitor guide suggested and took a through-field short cut over a barbedwire fence (why do they insist on surrounding all these places in this stuff).

Well worth the scramble; the pink sky behind these beautiful stones made my day!

Lligwy (Dolmen / Quoit / Cromlech)

This thing really is a monster capstone! I always hapily clamber insider then have a little panic attack at the weight of the stone above my head (perfect image of me being squashed like a bug).

Not for the claustrophobic!

The Devil's Ring and Finger (Standing Stones)

As there isn't much around here to see (ah, the midlands) I was pleased to find this site in daytrip-distance and set off with plenty of daylight hours remaining only to get stuck on the M6. Fabulous.

Got to Mucklestone near Market Drayton at about 3pm, well in time to see what we wanted to see before it got dark, only to discover that there isn't a thing in Mucklestone! Lots of driving around country lanes bought me to the next town over, Norton in Hales, where I gave up trying to find it myself and asked a local if he knew (by any chance!) where the Devils RIng and Finger was...


So, from St Chads church in Norton in Hales, you take a left and follow the road until it turns to the right, dont turn, stay on the road (Forge Lane/Road) and stay on this road as it turns into a track, and then a mostly mud and grass walkway until you arrive at a farm.

At this point (as we still cant see anything) we assume we are in the wrong place and ask at the farm. The very nice lady directs us across the track, past the horse and over a gate into a field on the otherside of the stream. From there we follow the drystone wall up to a little copse and the monument is hiding at the back against a barbedwire fence.

Its a shame for it really as its been moved at some point over the last 300years and it just "dumped" out of the way. But its considerably bigger than Men-an-Tol and worth a clamber through and a quick circumambulation. We were there for sunset, which came fast, and we had to leave quickly to avoid getting stranded in the boggy field below.

Well worth the trip if you're in the area.
Hey Ho, here we go...

Geology graduate who grew up in the (barren) West Midlands, did some travelling and then ended up back in sunny Wolverhampton (mostly by default). Got some fab friends who like rocks as much as I do, so we spend lots of our freetime in country roads arguing over dodgy directions to another stone monument.

I'm as interested in the theories behind this stuff as anything else and think that most people are thinking too small. The positioning and alignment of most (if not all) burrows, megaliths, monoliths, bumps, dips and circles show an understanding of energy that we no longer possess. But thats all a bit too deep to get into on here. These trips are pilgrimages for me, in the same way as people visit churches or Mecca (silly modern religions)

I'm a holistic therapist living with the love of my life, Martin, and a lizard named Stan. I LOVE food as long as it never had a face, I'm rather partial to red wine and I'm happy to be alive and able to walk freely through moor, hill and vale finding sacred sites to "power up" and get me through.

Thats about it really...

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