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8 May 2005
New land acquired around the Rollright Stones

On Sunday June 19th at the Rollright Stones - Kings Men Stone Circle (Oxfordshire, England), will be held the official opening of the recently acquired extra land and footpath between the Kings Men and the Whispering Knights.  The path will be officially declared open by Dr Aubrey Burl and a procession from the circle to the Knights will be led by him and the Abbot Bromley Horn Dancers with other special guests.
     Dr Burl is Patron of the Rollright Trust and the Trust is delighted that he has agreed to officially open the new path. The day is intended to be on of celebration with music, morris dancers and speeches kept to a minimum. Later in the afternoon there will also be a
summer solstice open celebration led by Cotswold Pagans.
     Official opening is at 12 noon. This will be a special day for anyone involved in the care and preservation of this wonderful historic place.  It was intended from the very beginning that where possible the stones would be accessible to all including the disabled.  Rollright unlike the majority of other megalithic sites is close to a road and a densely poplulated area.  On the downside it does mean the site gets a lot more visitors than more remote sites leading to a continouis battle against erosion.  On the plus side it does mean that those who are unable to trudge across hills and field are able in one small area to visit a complex of megalithic sites that commence in the mid-neolithic to bronze-age.  The new paths have been seeded with a hardwearing grass mix and have been laid with a protective mesh that is firm enough for most wheelchairs.
     Since the formation of the Rollright Trust in September 1997 the Trust has managed to acquire extra land to the south of the circle, thereby opening up the original entrance.  They have also managed to acquire more land to form a wide footpath from the circle along the top of the field and around the Whispering Knights.  The Knights were formerly accessed via the road with no footpath and fast traffic.  The Knights monument was suffering the effects of severe soil erosion caused by ploughing too close to the railings. Thanks to the addition of more land surrounding the WK's the erosion problem has been rectified.

Source: Stones Mailing List (7 May 2005)

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