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Sunday, 30 August 2015

All aboard the fantasy waggon.....




One of our esteemed contributors has alerted me to this.  Copied below.  On the Pembs Hist Soc web site, they even used one of my illustrations, which I thought was a bit cheeky.  But in my magnanimity I forgive them. (Of course, I use other people's illustrations all the time!)

This is all news to me, since I am not a member of the Historical Society, although their journal has published articles by me in the past.

Isn't it amazing how even sombre and steady historians get swept away by the mythology of the day?  Just look at these bits from the blurb:

Prof MPP "...... has been working at both ends of the conundrum, and in conjunction with scientists and geologists has succeeded in pinpointing the precise origins in the Preselis of some of the Stonehenge bluestones."  Not sure that the good Professor has done any of that,  and I'm not sure what exactly is meant by "precise".......

"CARN GOEDOG and CRAIG RHOS-Y-FELIN, have been identified by geologists Richard Bevins (National Museum of Wales) and Rob Ixer (University of Leicester) as sources for some of Stonehenge’s bluestones. Craig Rhos-y-felin, a remarkable rhyolite outcrop, provided probably just one monolith; the geologists have been able to identify the precise spot it was taken from."  Dodgy statement from top to bottom.  A little less certainty might just have been a good idea......


At Carn Goedog "......... evidence has been found for removal of many pillars from this site in the Neolithic period."  What?  What evidence?

"At the foot of Carn Goedog are numerous hut platforms........"  Numerous?  Four or five, maybe, and "a few" might be a rather better expression...... but I feel a village coming on.

So there we go.  When the fantasy waggon is rolling, look how easy it is to hop aboard and enjoy the ride! Yahoo!!

Luckily I am elsewhere on Saturday, meeting up with a book club in New Quay.  But if anybody else wants to go along, I'm sure you would be very welcome.

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When Faith moved Mountains

Field Trip with Prof. Mike Parker-Pearson

Saturday, 5 September 2015
http://www.pembrokeshirehistoricalsociety.org/index.php/news/events/41-when-faith-moved-mountains

If you have been following the Stonehenge story in recent years, then this field trip is not to be missed.

The mysterious and improbable link between Pembrokeshire and Stonehenge has given rise to many hotly contested theories. For over 90 years, ever since the source of the bluestones in that enigmatic monument was traced to the Preseli Hills, controversy and speculation have reigned.

Over the last few years, Professor Mike Parker-Pearson of the Institute of Archaeology, University College London, has been working at both ends of the conundrum, and in conjunction with scientists and geologists has succeeded in pinpointing the precise origins in the Preselis of some of the Stonehenge bluestones. This year he is excavating at three Pembrokeshire sites and has very kindly offered to give us a guided tour of them.

Two, CARN GOEDOG and CRAIG RHOS-Y-FELIN, have been identified by geologists Richard Bevins (National Museum of Wales) and Rob Ixer (University of Leicester) as sources for some of Stonehenge’s bluestones. Craig Rhos-y-felin, a remarkable rhyolite outcrop, provided probably just one monolith; the geologists have been able to identify the precise spot it was taken from.

High on the Preselis, Carn Goedog has been identified by Richard and Rob as the dominant source for Stonehenge’s spotted dolerite monoliths and evidence has been found for removal of many pillars from this site in the Neolithic period. At the foot of Carn Goedog are numerous hut platforms, one of which is being excavated to see if it was associated with the Neolithic quarrying.

The third site we will be visiting is at FELINDRE FARCHOG, on the valley floor of the River Nevern (Nyfer) where a circular enclosure is being excavated to find out if it dates to the Neolithic.

The itinerary:

Meet at the Salutation Inn, Felindre Farchog at 10.00 a.m.
Visit the excavation there.
Go on to Craig Rhos-y-Felin.
Return to the Salutation for refreshments (approx. 12.00 p.m.) and to hear a short talk from Mike on the discoveries at Carn Goedog for the benefit of those not able to make the journey.
Approx. 1.30 p.m. the Carn Goedog party leave, weather permitting. This site is a 45 minute trek each way over steep rough ground. While I am sure some of you are well able to cope with hill walking, please note that you do it entirely at your own risk. The Society cannot be held liable for any loss or injury.

Please contact the Secretary, Ann Sayer (01348 811614 or ann.sayer@btinternet.com) if you would like to join all or part of this field trip.

19 comments:

chris johnson said...

If there are two locations you would NOT choose for a tourist location, they might be Rhosyfelin and Carn Goedog. I know Brian is very nonchalant about the two miles of one track road, hairpin bends, and an actual river to ford, but I know many city folk who would be very nervous. That is Rhosyfelin. Goedog is more a location for mountain goats, and when they intend waking in from Rhosyfelin then they better have good walking shoes even then will be getting wet feet. The disclaimer "At your own risk" should be taken seriously.

By the way, any bell ringers finding there way to the top of Goedog will find a bell stone - I know I did.

TonyH said...

Does anyone, perhaps living more locally, know much about the 3rd site to be visited, Felindre Farchog, on the valley floor of the river Nevern?

e.g. what is the derivation of the two words?

BRIAN JOHN said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BRIAN JOHN said...

I suspect that they have made a mistake here. I think Ann Sayer, the Sec, is referring to Castell Mawr, which is quite close to Felindre Farchog. It is of course not on the valley floor but on a hill summit, and it has already had some excavations from the MPP team. It makes sense (insofar that any of this makes sense) that they will be back there this September as well, searching for traces of the Neolithic which will in their eyes confirm the ruling hypothesis.

Geo Cur said...



Possibly the circular enclosure just outside the village at SN 1021 3893 .

BRIAN JOHN said...

Ah -- thank you Geo. You may well be right. There is a very faint circle there, mentioned by Coflein. Will post a pic.

Hugh Thomas said...

The walk from Craig Rhos y Felyn to Carn Goeddog in 45 mins after all the rain we have had recently over that ground ?.... Would like to see that.... :) Has to be a typo like Brian has suggested....

BRIAN JOHN said...

I suspect they will drive over to Mirianog or Garnwen and walk from there.

Hugh Thomas said...

I have never parked at either of those , are we able to park there if we ask the locals nicely ? Or do they not mind anyway ? :)

BRIAN JOHN said...

You can drive to Garnwen on the public highway (minor road) and park on the common outside the cottage gate. Mirianog Ganol is approached first on a public road and then on a private road, but you can park on the common near the cattle grid. I've parked there many times. Only once has somebody come and grumbled at me. Nice medieval corn drying kiln there -- I thought at first that it was a collapsed Neolithic burial mound.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Mirianog Ganol is definitely the place to park if you want to explore around Carn Alw..... just a quick walk along a good track.

Hugh Thomas said...

Thank you very much for that , it is going save my legs no end.... :)

Davey said...

Pembrokeshire Ramblers have a 13 mile walk on 15 September, starting at Brynberian, going across the moor and up to the ridge via Carn Alw and Carn Goeddog. They are visiting Beddyrfanc too.

Davey said...

Apologies, just checked, the walk is on 19 September.

TonyH said...

"The Magical Mystery Tour is coming to take you away, dying to take you away....."**

Just.....don't get sucked in, folks, in at least two meanings of that word.



*John, Paul, George & Ringo, previously known as THE QUARRYMEN

TonyH said...

I think it is GeoCur who alerted us to this publication(s) on this Blog as recently as May 10, 2015:-

ANCIENT HUTS & CIRCLES: CARN GOEDOG - HAFOD TYDFIL AREA.

DYFED ARCH. TRUST

Others may like to take another or a first look at this, given the intrepid walk about to take place in a few days, involving some hut circles.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Davey -- walk on 19 Sept? On the web site it clearly says 5th September......

Davey said...

There is a walk on 5 September, but that is at Pumsaint.

This is what is written on the Pembrokeshire Ramblers site:

Sat 19 September 2015 10:30 - 13 miles/20.9 km - Strenuous

Brynberian

Starts at 10:30: Layby in lane just off B4329 that leads to Brynberian village. (SA41 3TN, SN104352) Physically challenging walk starting with a crossing of Brynberian moor before an ascent to the Preseli ridge via Carn Alw and Carn Goeddog. The route continues back along the Golden road before a descent back to Brynberian via farmland. Note that this walk is likely to be muddy and wet underfoot even in dry weather. Gaiters advisable.

BRIAN JOHN said...

These walks are getting confusing. One is for the members of Pembs Hist Soc, and the other is for ramblers. May they all have fun......