You are currently browsing the daily archive for 21/06/2011.

An English Heritage spokesman said, “This year there are about 20,000 people and last year it was about 35,000 – so that is quite a bit down which has meant the operation is a lot easier.

It’s always “easy” if you allow this (opening photo and about 25 seconds in). This and this (third and fourth photo) to happen. How come no-one can get away with that (stand on and climb the monument) 364 days of the year?  Is it because being drunk or leaving vast quantities of litter is seen as a valid expression of spirituality? Or is setting up consultations, arranging for stewards and issuing pleas considered adequate excuse for failing every single year to perform the statutory duty of care of keeping people off the stones and treating the area with the respect it deserves?

Has anyone considered reporting this prima facie case of repeated maladministration? What’s maladministration? Well, take your pick from these possible elements:

  • delay
  • incorrect action or failure to take any action
  • failure to follow procedures or the law
  • failure to provide information
  • inadequate record-keeping
  • failure to investigate
  • failure to reply
  • misleading or inaccurate statements
  • inadequate liaison
  • inadequate consultation
  • broken promises
  • and of course, failure to apply one’s OWN rules on one day but not on all the others!


Map of earthworks at Priddy Rings, Somerset by C H Bothamley

The Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979 makes it a criminal offence to destroy or damage a scheduled monument through and including agriculture,  forestry,  flooding and tipping.

Sometimes it beggars belief that unique Scheduled Ancient Monuments get ‘trashed’ by farmers but every now and then it happens, and this time a large part of one of the Priddy Circles has been bulldozed into the ground. The Circles may not look much on the ground but from the air these impressive four Neolithic henges, trace a line across the landscape of the Mendips, close by to the linear barrow cemeteries of Ashen Hill and Nine Barrows.

News in This is Somerset states that… Land near the circles appears to have been recently re-seeded and tree saplings have been planted close by. Further photographic evidence on The Megalithic Portal, show that part of the southernmost circle has been partly bulldozed flat. Did the person that did this know of their importance??? Well that remains to be seen, but such vandalisation should be rewarded by prosecution and a stiff fine at least.

Happy summer solstice to all our readers


June 2011

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