Posts Tagged ‘barbrook’

Barbrook and boredom

Sunday 12th September, 2010 – Car Top, Derbyshire.

As if often the way, whenever you have had a wonderful experience, such as exploring a stone circle you have never visited before on a sunny day, then perhaps these things should be considered to be the highlight of the day, and the day should end there. Sadly, yet again, I pushed both Kal and myself on to another area. I had been to the Big Moor just north of Chatsworth House in Derbyshire in the winter months, and as we were so close to the place again I wanted to see if the Barbrook stone circle was easier to get something out of in the sunshine than it had been in a howling icy gale on my last visit, when I had been not very inclined to stay and do much work on it.

I remembered the lay-by to stop in, and the footpath, and the distance to the circle. We found the Barbrook circle without any problems.

View from Barbrook circle

There was a quite apathetic nonchalance with which we entered the circle. Yes, it was the end of the day, but usually we are both quite excited about the prospect of dowsing a circle, whatever the weather or time of day. As we listlessly wandered around the circle’s stones we kept finding negative responses:

  • Was there any energy here? NO.
  • Was there anything her of any interest to us at all? NO.
  • Was the site linked with any other sacred place? NO.
  • Was there anything that either of us could do here? NO.

So much negativity! We spotted the ritual offerings that other visitors had left here. Well, at least they must be having some positive effect? Someone believed in the circle! Were the offerings energising the circle? NO. Oh dear – a total loss!

Ritual offerings at Barbrook

I told Kal that perhaps all was not lost. Apparently there were other circles around here too, and maybe they were still alive in some way? We set off. A family was ahead of us on the path and the children seemed to be really enjoying being out even though the moorland was bleak and uninspiring. They pranced and galloped everywhere, putting our energy levels to shame. At one point, as we rounded a bend in the path and were beginning to wonder where these other circles were, we found one of the kids lying on the floor taking a close-up photo of something on the ground. It was a gigantic fly agaric mushroom – the biggest I have ever seen, almost entirely on its own in a patch of mossy earth.

A plate-sized Fly Agaric mushroom

We took the chance to ask the father of the family about where the circles might be. He only knew of a roundhouse on the top of the moor, but not of the circles. Feeling that something was better than an aimless wander through bleak moorland at dusk we headed up onto the moorland again, and sought a path across to the roundhouse. Within minutes my spider senses were tingling, and without the aid of rods we found the remnant of the roundhouse’s circular wall.

It was energetically dead.

Remains of a roundhouse at Barbrook

Right, right. never mind. We could see other stones that looked like they might be the remains of circles, so we hopped between visible stones. Sometimes we arrived at just a pile of a few remnant stones, but on two occasions they looked as through they might be the remains of two small stone circles. Aha! Did they have anything energetic about them whatsoever? NO.

You know what? We can take a hint. There was nothing for us here. If you’re thinking of going to see these megalithic marvels, and you are in any way interested in dowsing, save yourself a bleak and featureless and cold walk, because the only thing you will find on Car Top or Big Moor is a whole heap of boredom. Now, I like rocks, but this was intolerably dull.



Froggatt Edge: circles and quarries

Sunday 12th September, 2010 – Froggatt village, Derbyshire.

The afternoon was ours and the day was glorious. It was the kind of day at the end of the summer that you know if you don’t make the most of it you will sorely regret it because there won’t be many more like this for many a month now as Autumn and Winter take turns to ravish the landscape, denuding the shrubbery and instilling a greyness to the sky. This day’s sky was a painting in a light blue palette. It was with this backdrop that I cajoled Kal to come out on a dowsing mission. As it turned out, it would only be later that I realised the full and startling importance of this casual visit. It would be a moment that resonated with me in the most profouond way, evoking a deep memory from over thirty years ago, and confirming that my path was true to me.

iI had cloaked the intended destination in an air of secrecy, so it wasn’t until we had reached Stockport (damn that SatNav for insisting it was the fastest route) that Kal ventured to suggest we were going somewhere in Derbyshire. Indeed we were. I had found a stone circle with impeccable credentials – near a known path, not too far to walk to, fairly intact – and to us it was completely new and exciting. It was called Froggatt Edge stone circle just beyond the town of Bakewell.

Froggatt Edge stone circle

We parked at the Chequers Inn (top pun, top pub) which was on a small road going out of the village. Two hundred yards back down the hill a path crossed the road going both down and up the Edge. We headed upwards, through the delightfully deciduous canopy of old trees, up a well-trodden path mottled with mosses and tree roots. After passing a gate in a wall the path got rockier, and soon we could see people above us. As we emerged out of the woods we realised that we were at the base of the Edge’s cliff face. As far as the eye could see in either direction were clutches of climbers, spandexed and sporting fluorescent ropes, all either looking upwards, or fiddling with clasps and bags. I have never seen so many climbers in one place. We asked for directions from a friendly-looking bunch, then made our way right, following the path up to the top of the cliffs. The climb was easy, unlike the band of brave souls who were challenging themselves to get up the hard way.

When we emerged at the top it was time to catch our breath, and admire the views.

View along Froggatt Edge

The Stone Throne

If I were a king, then this is where I would have my throne, atop Froggatt Edge. The views are fantastic when the weather’s good. As we wandered along the edge, stopping to look at the unusual rock formations, wind-blasted and weather-worn, we came across a very unusual set of rocks. Kal immediately pounced upon them and seated himself comfortably on the top – it was a perfect seat, he claimed, so I too went up to try it. He wasn’t wrong. The views were even better from that vantage point, and the seat was genuinely comfortable. Both of us could have stayed there all day. Clearly a strong power centre with good energies.

Kal indicating that perfection can be achieved with the addition of a pint of beer

The sun was going ‘under the yardarm’ as the sailing fratenity say, and so I pushed us onwards to our destination – the stone circle. Within moments of walking past the Throne we saw the circle itself, its one prominent stone enticing us into its bracken lair. Now the fun could begin.

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