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Smythe's Megalith

Long Barrow

Fieldnotes

Also known as the Warren Farm Chamber, this Medway Megalith was discovered in 1822 and excavated by Thomas Charles and Clement Taylor Smythe, having been unearthed only 6" down during ploughing. Laying east-west across the foot of a gentle downhill slope, and being smaller in stature than the other surviving monuments in the area, it was probably more easily destroyed, washed out and lost. The chamber alone is now visible as a circular chalkmark on aerial photographs in the centre of the field, 200m north-west of the White Horse Stone. It is on a level contour with Kit's Coty, 1/4 mile to the west.

Three upright sarsens in an H formation were uncovered, plus another as a spacer with [very unusually] a fifth stone used as a paved floor, with skeletal remains on top, which 'crumbled to dust' as the workmen dug them out. Some small skull fragments and vertebrae were saved. Other sarsens were unearthed more recently in the same field, buried in pits, and were left in situ but it is not confirmed if they were connected to the monument.

This would likely have been the smallest of all the surrounding monuments height-wise, at around 5' inside the [surviving] chamber, but nowadays there's nothing to see.

As far as access, there is none, other than the view from the Pilgrim's Way at the foot of Warren Farm Road, or from the White Horse Stone. Bordered by the Channel Tunnel and A249 to the west, it is not the most pleasant place to spend any time with little ambience, though the nature reserve and woodland on the spur to the east are a nice retreat.
slumpystones Posted by slumpystones
22nd March 2007ce
Edited 22nd March 2007ce

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