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Bleasdale Circle

Scheduled Ancient Monument - Bleasdale Circle

Map of Bleasdale Circle

District: Wyre
Name: Bleasdale Circle
Description: A complex circular monument, probably built in several separate phases and dating to the Bronze Age.

The Bleasdale circle is situated in the centre of a peat moss known as Edmarsh, which is situated between the two headstreams of the River Brock, at the foot of Fairsnape Fell. It was discovered in 1898 by J. Kelsall and S.Jackson, and partly excavated by them during 1898-1900. In 1933-5 re-excavation of the whole site was carried out under the direction of W.S. Varley, since it was suspected that the published plans were not strictly accurate.

The circle is comprised of an inner structure set within an outer palisade. The inner structure has a central grave, which was the primary and only burial, 4ft long, by 2.5ft wide by 1.5ft deep. This central grave is surrounded by 11 oak posts of girth 2ft to 2ft 10ins. forming a ring 36ft in diameter. This post ring is surrounded by a pennanular ditch, straight sided and flat bottomed, 5.5ft wide at the mouth, 3ft wide at the bottom, and 3ft deep. It was lined with birch poles laid flat in the bottom. The mound had consisted of upcast from the ditch, originally it was probably circular, and about 3ft high in the centre. This barrow had no discernible berm, nor had any appreciable amount of upcast been thrown outwards from the ditch. The rounded ends of the ditch are flanked by a row of 3 posts to each end, the space between them forming a causeway to the inner structure.

The outer palisade is roughly circular, having a diameter of 150ft with a break in the south west marked by especially large posts. It nearly touches the inner circle opposite the causeway. The palisade is made up of "minor posts" 9-16ins. in diameter set contiguously within a straight sided flat bottomed trench 9ins. deep, separated by "principals" 14-16ft apart, which are large posts 2-3ft in diameter. The "principals" must have stood much higher than the "minor posts". The area between the outer palisade and the inner structure contained nothing whatsoever.

SD: 57700,45990

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