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Friday 26 October 2018

Stonehenge and Pembrokeshire -- not before time, a reality check

The National Park's Archaeology Day is on 17th November this year, and the poster has just been published. This is rather interesting -- Prof MPP is talking, as usual, but his theme this time is:  "New Discoveries on the Preseli Hills."  No mention of Stonehenge.  He will of course talk about Stonehenge, but is there just a hint that there is a reality check going on?  How many more disappointments can he and his team put up with?  For that matter, how many disappointments can research grant bodies and charitable funders put up with, when reality so consistently fails to match up to the hype?

Here is a check-list:

Craig Rhosyfelin -- a so-called "bluestone quarry" falsified by the researcher's own dating evidence and otherwise hotly disputed

Carn Goedog -- ditto

Castell Mawr -- proposed as  Neolithic henge linked to the "quarries" and now shown to be A Bronze Age / Iron Age feature with no links to bluestones or Stonehenge

Bayvil -- ditto

Felindre Farchog -- prehistoric (?) enclosure / earthwork? A Neolithic henge site or quarrying settlement?  After a short dig, idea dropped.  Probably a medieval site

Carn Goedog (traces below the tor, on the edge of Brynberian Moor) -- Neolithic quarrymen's village?  Shown to be medieval.

Pensarn -- A site connected to Rhosyfelin?  Shown in 2016 to be a Bronze Age cist grave with nearby Iron Age site

Parc y Gaer -- A site linked to the Rhosyfelin "quarry"?  Shown in 2016 to be a Roman site -- probably a villa.

Waun Mawn -- strongly flagged up as the site of "proto-Stonehenge"  -- full results awaited, but apparently no links with bluestone quarries or with Stonehenge.

Bedd yr Afanc -- suggested as another proto-Stonehenge site, but previous excavations have shown up no signs of a henge or stone ring.

Wouldn't it be nice of Prof MPP could do a whole talk without once mentioning Stonehenge, and just concentrate instead on describing his digs and flagging up the very interesting prehistoric features which we have in Pembrokeshire?

The times they are a'changing............


TonyH said...

However, Toby Driver's talk at 10.30 about new aerial discoveries from the air during the "Great 2018 Dry Season" may put the cat amongst the pigeons and cause another wild goose chase.

MPP probably needs very few "clues" to get all worked up and excited so that he wants to rummage around in Preseli, or, maybe, neighbouring "hot spots".

After the excavations and reinstatements at Waun Maun and Rhosyfelin, he would do well to think twice before, in Joni Mitchell's prophetic ecological song lyrics, "you don't know what you've got till it's gone: you pave paradise, and put up a parking lot".

PeteG said...

Hmmm. Selling England by the Pound.
I wonder what Dr Ixer would make of this?


PeteG said...