Guisecliff Wood – Bronze Age Cup & Ring Rock Carving
South of Pateley Bridge, North Yorkshire
OS Map Ref SE16416356
OS Maps – Landranger 99 (Northallerton & Ripon), Explorer 298 (Nidderdale)
One of the most intriguing legacies left to us by our ancestors are the enigmatic carving of patterns and symbols which has become known as ‘Cup & Ring’ rock art. These designs created by the Neolithic and Bronze Age people that are our forbears could be as simple as a circular hollow known as a cup through to a complicated combination of cups, rings, spirals, chevrons and grooves. They are thousands of years old and no one knows their original purpose or meaning.
The interest in the rock art of the British Isles has grown over the past few years through the work of volunteers, amateur archaeologists and antiquarians and one such project is ‘The England Rock Art (ERA)’ website and database along with other websites such as The British Rock Art Blog, The Megalithic Portal and The Modern Antiquarian website these important sites are being recorded for these carvings for future generations and are now even being brought to the attention of professional archaeologists. Even though the carvings are in stone those that survive today are often much worn from both natural and human damage and will need our protection if they are to be enjoyed and learnt from in years to come. (more…)
Map Ref: SE03118604
Latitude: 54.270006N Longitude: 1.953748W
High on the bleak Burton moors above the small village of West Burton where Bishopsdale meets Wensleydale can be found the remains of an ancient settlement. Though the walls are now nothing more than rubble you can still see the layout of the huts and enclosures which made up this extensive settlement.
There are many such settlements around Wensleydale, 15 in total all situated high on the moors above what would have been the natural tree line of the wooded dales. One of these being on the moorland on ? Hill which rises on the other side of Bishopsdale opposite Pennhill where the Burton Moor settlement is and both would have been visible to each other. The Burton moor settlement is situated at 1500 feet, the open land would have allowed the inhabitants to see any danger approaching whether human or from the wild animals which would have roamed the wooded valleys. There are several springs in and around the immediate area for water and the open land would have provided grazing for livestock.
OS Maps – Landranger 94 (Whitby & Esk Dale)
Explorer OL27 (North York Moors – Eastern Area)
Just east of the village of Grosmont located on a limestone pavement at the crest of Sleights Moor are the High Bridestones, these are not to be confused with the better known High and Low Bridestones which are a natural rock formation situated not to far away in another part of the North Yorkshire Moors.
At first glance this apparently random collection of stones is a little confusing with many now having fallen over and scattered or missing it makes for a bit of a sad site, adding to this is with what seems to be a tradition (how old a tradition is and for what purpose it have yet to discover) of people jamming coins into the cracks and crevices of the upright stone which is causing additional damage to the stone. (more…)
Hawkstone is probably one of the most spectacular and breathtaking parks and follies Britain has to offer and without a doubt one of my personal favourites. I have many a fond memory attending historical re-enactment events here.
Situated off a country road that runs between Weston on the A49 and Hodnet on the A442, the site and it’s surrounding area has such a wealth of history along with a mix of myth, legend and folklore that you could fill a book let alone a blog post. I am considering developing a whole page dedicated to the site. That at least will be a good excuse for some more visits :-). For the moment thou I’ll try and keep it short and sweet (kept a look out for future posts or pages).
The church situated in Llanmihangel is a 13th century building of Early English style giving the visitor the impression of a building steeped in history. Although there may have been an older church situated on this site prior to the current one no record of it now exists.
These days the church is entered by the Victorian South Porch added in 1887, in 1888-1889 additional restoration work was carried out and a large east window installed together with a new roof and floor boards.
Inside the church there is a wonderful calm atmosphere that feels a million miles away from the modern world this is helped by the lack of both water and electricity meaning that oil lamps are still used to light the interior. The floor is decorated with Victorian panels, the roof is a fine oak-boarded ‘wagon’,ceiling.
On the edge of the beautiful North Yorkshire Moors just off the road running between Cropton and Newton-on-Rawcliff and approximately 10min (4miles) drive north of Pickering is probably the most famous Roman site on the moors. Cawthorn Roman military complex dates from around the late 1st century CE and early 2nd century CE.
This site forms part of a network of sites across the moors and coastline such as the forts at Malton (DERVENTIO) and Lease Rigg, two villas and five coastal signal stations of which the best preserved example can be found inside the grounds of Scarborough Castle. Cawthorn is also not far from the well known Wheeldale Roman road. Thought for many years to be a surviving section of the Roman road linking Cawthorn with some of these sites, many historians now believe it to be of later construction built towards the end of the roman period.
Studford Ring is a very accessible site with access from both High Street where there is on road parking and as i did in this occasion from Ampelforth itself where there is plenty of free parking on the main street, where there can be found a rather nice pub, the White Horse. Which makes for a very civilised end to your walk.
The site of Studford Ring is a quadrangle earth work enclosure measuring some 54 yards across with an internal ditch approximately 12feet across and in places still 4 feet deep. The entrance is situated roughly along the south east edge and although threes and bushes now grow on three of the four back side the central area is free from any such vegetation and is grass covered with a number of mole hills. (more…)