That pesky rain cloud was now directly above us and it was pouring down.
We pulled into a passing place which conveniently is right next to the remains of the burial chamber.
I bravely (or stupidly) jumped out the car to look for a way through/over the neck high barbed wire fence. As I was contemplating easing my way through the fence it soon became apparent I would be drenched in about 5 minutes. Given that there is little to see of the remains (a couple of large stones piled together – which could easily be seen anyway from the road) I decided to settle for a road side view and jump back into the dry of the car.
On a dry day I may have attempted a closer look – but not today!
[visited 11/9/4] As I was bombing past here on my way to Toller Porcorum, I stopped for a shufty. Basically its 2 (or possibly more) large stones together in a crop field. Luckily the crop was gone so I shinnied over the gate and went for a closer look. I presume this is the remains of a long barrow and in fact The Ancient Stones of Dorset has a picture from 1872 suggesting these may form two sides of a chamber. One thing is for certain not much is left to talk about. Good views though...
Access to the edge of the field is easy as its on a road, after that its a field...
Access can be seen easily from the road at approx SY554938. We left the A35 at SY555917, heading north towards an aerial mast near West Compton. We took a left at the first t-junction and after about 100 yards, the stones were around 50 yards away in the field to the north of the road.
Depending on the state of crop in the field, it lies around 100 yards from a path that leads north from the road around 100 yards east....
Thursday 18 September 2003
We didn't have time to investigate closely, but this looks like around 3 or 4 large stones left from a collapsed burial chamber, but collapsed in such a way as to be recognisable.
Like to get a closer look, but goodness knows when I'll be back in these parts and there's just so much to see!
North of the Roman road, and on West Compton Down, but on a portion now brought under cultivation, are two stones, generally considered to show the site of an ancient cromlech. They were formerly prostrate, but are now placed upright. This was done, I am informed on good authority, about forty years ago; a farmer, it appears, wishing to rid himself of these hindrances to the plough, endeavoured so much difficulty that he finally desisted, and raised them on end instead. The stones are of no mean size, and are said to extend beneath the surface to a depth equal to their height above the ground. As they now stand, one is three feet four inches above the present surface, and the other four feet. The breadth, measured across from end to end in the case of each stone, is about six feet six inches, with a thickness of about one foot six inches.
Oh yes, good authority I'm sure. But you're still trotting out the same old themes of 'great difficulty moving them so he put them back' and 'same below as above ground'. And come on - why would the farmer go to so much trouble to put them upright?! I'm not buying it which is why this is firmly in the Folklore category. From E Dunkin's 'Some Account of the Megalithic Remains in South Dorset' in 'Reliquary' January 1871.