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This is an article we published in 2011. We thought it worth repeating.

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Right on the edge of the Cotswolds, not far from the famous Crickley Hill Camp, is a little visited ancient monument, Crippets Long Barrow, that in its day must have been of immense significance yet today is little regarded – and all because of some trees – not the ones actually on it but the ones planted near to it.

This is a shame because as landscape art goes, it’s quite an achievement…

The trees on it were planted in the late nineteenth century ostensibly to protect it, but now that they are mature it’s a very moot point whether they are doing that …

But these are the trees that have truly “damaged” the monument, the belt that was planted in front of it, probably at the same time, and which would have seemed harmless at the time but have now matured and locked the barrow away from the very reason it was built there, the fantastic view it points towards…


And this is the view the builders intended. Has there ever been a more magnificent resting place in the history of these islands?

The arrow indicates the position of the barrow, hidden behind the belt of trees and shielded from the truly remarkable 60-mile panorama, surely one of the finest in England,  right across the West Midlands and into Wales. The significance of the spot has been entirely lost in modern times and it is a reasonable assumption that had the trees not been planted a little over a hundred years ago then far from being half-forgotten this would be one of the most celebrated and visited monuments – and not just by prehistory enthusiasts.

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