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Engineers working for Highways England may have inadvertently damaged a 6,000-year-old platform which
may hold the key to answering the question: Why was #Stonehenge
built in the first place?
clear majority of those who responded to Highways England’s consultations have been ignored.
Engineers working for Highways England may have inadvertently damaged a 6,000-year-old platform which may hold the key to answering the question: Why was Stonehenge built in the first place?
Preparatory drilling of a three-meter-deep hole (10ft) through a man-made platform of flint and animal bone at the Blick Mead site, roughly a mile from the standing stones at Stonehenge, has caused uproar among the archaeological community working in the area and studying one of mankind’s enduring mystery structures.
Blick Mead is part of the Stonehenge and Avebury UNESCO #world
site. Archeologists were already concerned about the possibility that the works could cause the local water table to drop, damaging artefacts and remains in the area.
The stone platform that, reportedly damaged during the drilling, contained the hoof prints of an aurochs, a type of giant prehistoric cow which is now extinct.
“This is a travesty. We took great care to excavate this platform and the aurochs’ hoofprints,” David Jacques, professor of archaeology at the University of Buckingham, who discovered the site 12 years ago, said of the reported damage.
“We believe hunters considered this area to be a sacred place even before Stonehenge. These monster cows – double the size of normal cattle – provided food for 300 people, so were revered.”
Highways England is scheduled to meet with the archaeological team led by Jacques on Thursday, but has denied any wrongdoing or accidental damage caused by its operations.https://www.rt.com/uk/445781-stonehenge-damaged-drilling-work/
The planned engineering works will irreparably scar the Stonehenge landscape for ever. There would be extensive tunnel cuttings into the chalk for four lanes of tarmac, and massive highway interchanges through sensitive archaeological areas. Over Countess Roundabout, shown under construction in the 1968 image above, there would be a colossal flyover into the World Heritage Site, looming close by the Mesolithic site of Blick Mead. The deep cutting through the hillside below Vespasian’s Camp, under woodland at the top of the image, would be further widened for the eastern tunnel approach over what was once the parkland of Amesbury Abbey and, long before that, a prehistoric cemetery, parts of which are still visible on the ground.
LOSS OF WORLD HERITAGE STATUS?
Some five years of construction and traffic chaos will leave the Stonehenge landscape so altered that loss of its World Heritage status is already feared. The advice of international experts and leading archaeologists, and the outright objections of the clear majority of those who responded to Highways England’s consultations have been ignored.
The Stonehenge Alliance is a group of non-governmental organisations and individuals that seeks enhancements to the Stonehenge World Heritage Site and opposes development that would cause it significant harm. The Alliance is concentrating its efforts on opposing the proposal for dualling the A303 including a short tunnel across Stonehenge WHS announced in December 2014, which would result in serious damage to the WHS landscape. http://stonehengealliance.org.uk/
Engineers working for Highways England may have inadvertently damaged a 6,000-year-old platform which may hold the key to answering the question: Why was Stonehenge built in the first place?www.rt.com