Amazingly, the landscape we live in today still holds monuments built by the people who lived here in the Bronze Age. Many of these are ceremonial monuments built to honour and house the remains of their dead.
2500 years ago this was one of the most important ceremonial lands in Europe, but today few people realise quite how important this Ridgeway was.
Could you help us preserve and showcase this special place?
Because, like the woman in our picture, when it is gone we will never know it again. It will be lost forever.
To find out about the many ways you can get involved with looking after and enjoying it just sign up using the link on this page.
Join archaeologist and ancient craft specialist James Dilley for an introduction to the art of flintknapping and an exploration of mankind's use of stone. James will give a flintknapping demonstration to help you understand and familiarise yourself with the process of making your own stone tools. Then use your own piece of flint to start making your tool kit and knife blade, under James' careful guidance. After lunch you will use your new stone tool kit to make the wooden handle for your Neolithic knife, and learn how to make and use authentic glue as well as the bindings to secure your flint blade. This workshop will be a fantastic experience of a new craft, and will leave you with a lasting and authentically ancient memento of the day to take home.
Strangways Hall, Abbotsbury Cost £30 (Please bring a packed lunch) To book call Artsreach on 01305 269512 For more information visit: www.artsreach.co.uk
Many Stone Age sites have been found along the South Dorset Ridgeway, and the flint axe is a a common prehistoric find, along with many stone tools. Join James Dilley and explore the art of making a Neolithic axe before having a go yourself! Learn how to work a piece of flint into an axe roughout then how to grind the axe surface to make your very own replica to take home. Using authentic materials, tools and techniques used by Neolithic people in Britain 6000 years ago, some previous flintknapping experience will be required for this workshop.
Strangways Hall, Abbotsbury Cost £30 (Please bring a packed lunch) To book call Artsreach on 01305 269512
We shall once again be joining forces with Natural England and EuCAN on Wednesday 21 October at the Valley of Stones National Nature Reserve to clear unwanted gorse and help maintain the rich grassland habitat that makes this place so special. Gorse is very important for many birds and insects, both for shelter and food, but it is very vigorous so careful management is needed to prevent it encroaching on other less vigorous vegetation.
The Valley of Stones is a National Nature Reserve, renowned for its 'boulder train' of sarsen stones and also important for its lichens, chalk grassland, butterflies and well-preserved field systems - not to mention the longhorn cattle which graze there. You can find more information about the reserve on Natural England's website
You will need a reasonable level of fitness to take part but there will be a range of activities to undertake so you don't need to be super-fit!
So, if you fancy spending a sociable and physical day in a very beautiful, hidden valley of the Ridgeway, please let me know and I will provide further details of where to meet, what to bring, etc: