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27 September 2003
Cornish barrow withdrawn from sale

A Bronze Age burial mound which sits on a Cornish hilltop went under the hammer at an auction, attracting hundreds of potential buyers. But the 4,000-year-old monument, which has belonged to the family of 1970s' rock musician Nic Potter for more than half a century, was withdrawn from the sale after bidding failed to reach the reserve price of 20,000. Bids at the sale began at 1,000. But at 17,000 the burial mound was withdrawn.
     Afterwards, Mr Potter - who was the bass player for Van Der Graaf Generator - told of his relief that he still owned the 11.5 metres-wide monument on a hilltop between St Ives and Penzance. "I have been lying awake at night thinking how much I love the barrow," he said. "In a sense I was relieved because if a bid of 18,000 had been made it would definitely have been sold and, thinking about it now, how could I have sold a piece of Cornwall? Really, it's beyond value."
     The sale had attracted the interest of best-selling author Frederick Forsyth, although the novelist did not bid for the mound. Other potential buyers had reportedly spoken of buying the Cornish monument as a grave for themselves. Mr Potter, who discovered the circle of granite rocks that make up the burial mound in thick undergrowth two years ago, added: "It would have bothered me for the rest of my life if someone had bought it as a grave."

Source: Cornish Guardian (25 September 2003)

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