LITTLEWORTH CROSS AND CLUMP

Littleworth Cross Plan

Originally the Crooksbury Line passed through the centre of this crossroad, but later refinement moved the crossing of the line some 22 metres east.  I mention this cross-road for two reasons; firstly it is fairly unusual for a crossing of roads to be labelled as a cross, the possible implication being that it may have been the site of a medieval stone cross evolved from a much older site of significance. The location is remote and not near a village, all the nearby properties dating from the last hundred years or so. Secondly, it is perfectly aligned with two barrows, known as Littleworth Clump, with a stretch of straight road curving around the barrows as it reaches them. Although now covered with vegetation the mounds would have been visible from the crossroad along the original trackway.  This can be seen in the screenshot with the crossroad by the red location arrow and the barrows 400 metres to the north west. The two barrows, very nearly touching each other, are both aligned with the road.

littleworth-cross

This Ordnance Survey extract clearly shows the alignment of the road and barrows.

Littleworth Clump W looking E The only clear view.  This is the west barrow seen from the west.

Although these mounds are listed as ancient monuments there has been some discussion in the past as to the likelihood of them being landscape features. They are not in an old estate or parkland and this would seem unlikely to me. But it does appear that they may have been altered as the bank surrounding them on the north side does look more modern and may have enclosed them before the road was widened in modern times.

Bank on north side Littleworth The enclosing bank. Barrows are to the right.

Littleworth Road

From the crossroad looking north west.  The barrows are in the trees at the limit of visibility with the road disappearing to the left.  The Line runs through the trees on the right edge of the view.

I can find no record of any excavation of the barrows and there is no obvious damage in the centres as can be seen on other sites such as Culverswell Hill.

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