Julian Cope presents Head Heritage

Head To Head
Log In
Register
The Modern Antiquarian Forum »
Silbury Hill »
Trespass on SSSI sites
Log In to post a reply

380 messages
Topic View: Flat | Threaded
Rhiannon
5228 posts

Edited Sep 04, 2012, 07:43
feelings vs facts
Sep 04, 2012, 07:30
"i just feel that everybody who wants to go up, goes up anyway"

well you're wrong there Bladup. Because when I was a kid we stopped at Silbury and my dad and I would have probably climbed up it, but the notices were there even then and they stopped us, because we read them and went along with what they were saying. I only had the dimmest awareness of prehistoric things then (everything starting with the romans) - like most of the people that stop there, no doubt.

And there are many times since when I've thought 'ooh wouldn't it be nice to see what the landscape looks like from the top' but the overwhelming thing that stops me is that when I think about it, on balance, I've been asked by the people who look after the site and therefore (one hopes) have its best interests at heart - not to do so. It's not exactly 'sticking it to the man' but in this case the man is someone who loves prehistoric sites and wants to look after them.

I don't accept at all that if people want to climb it, they will. Because I don't and I'm sure many other people here come into the same category. I rather think that people who do, when they know they've been asked not to, to protect it, are putting their own gratification in front of the right of everyone else to enjoy it without it being spoilt. You might say, well Those Sort of people are going to climb it whatever you say. But some of them might think again if you educate them and make it clear why you're asking them not to walk up the hill.

To suggest because some people do, we might as well make it official and let everyone is absurd. Do you know how many visitors that place gets! Can you imagine the state of the hill if you let all those people walk up it? It's chalk grassland on the hill (SSSI as people have said) and as soon as you wear away the top layer of plants, you will start carving a massive hole into the earth, as you'll see if you look at sheep tracks on that kind of land. It would have huge wandering scars up it in no time, and every time it rained they'd get bigger. The alternative would be some kind of winding stairway. RIP Silbury.

I think Silbury's a special case and I just don't understand the mindset of someone who'll climb it, I think it's totally arrogant and smacks of doing something deliberately because they've been told not to. What is Silbury to them, why do they want to climb it? They can't simultaneously have all this neo-pagan respect for it and then add to damaging the very thing they profess to respect. It's bullshit I'm afraid.

Some people used to chip bits off stonehenge and you can call it hyperbole but I reckon it's not so different. We've stopped them doing that, even though there's lots of stone to go round and the damage wouldn't be that noticeable.
Topic Outline:

The Modern Antiquarian Forum Index