Tuesday, 12 March 2019

A walk around Bury Ditches - an Iron Age Hill Fort in Shropshire

The sun shone hazily and the clouds drifted by the hand gliders on the distant crag of a Shropshire hill and the wings of patrolling buzzards were tickled by the thermals. Time to get out again with Little Bird, Sweep and the dogs. Time to explore this new home of mine in rural Shropshire in our first spring here.

A sign I had seen on winter journeys across the county was for Bury Ditches, tucked away between Bishop's Castle and Clun in south Shropshire. Sweep despite living nearby had never been so it was good to tread new territory together in his homelands. The Ditches are an Iron Age hill fort dating back to 500BC and a superb example of a multivallate fort which is one with two or more ramparts as defence.
South Shropshire landscape

The fort was once all pine plantation until a great storm in the 1970's blew down many trees revealing the details of the ditches and ramparts and so the Forestry Commission now manage as a historic site.
carved boy tree trunk

We walked down a woodland path past carved tree folk and information to guide us as to how the fort would have looked. The dogs pulled eagerly and Little Bird tromped through heather lined paths to the summit of Sunnyhill where the oval lines of the fort can clearly be seen and walked along. Views all around were amazing, across to the Long Mynd, the Clee Hills and across to the Stiperstones back home.
Yellow gorse Shropshire

walking on heather ramparts
The place has an ethereal feel to it, treading on a landscape shaped so long ago, what lies beneath these folds in the land. Folklore says that gold is buried here by fairies and  the lucky finder will discover one day as there is gold wire attached to the bounty.

But for us the treasure will be found here in late summer, plentiful purple winberries for gorgeous pies and the reward of fantastic views each season.
Bury Ditches Shropshire

Bury Ditches Shropshire

Bury Ditches Map
Forestry Commision Bury Ditches

Joining in with Country Kids to share my tales from a new life in rural Shropshire.

Country Kids linky


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