Tuesday, 13 April 2010

One Cork, One King and Nine Ladies

Mark is not the only climber in the family. His younger brother is also a bit good on the indoor walls and not averse to scaling the odd rock or two...

...though this one, at least, was planned and somewhat easier, having holds cut into the side! This photograph dates from 2007 - the same year as yesterdays blog, though later in the summer. (It was obviously a good year for rock scaling). Now, of course, it would be a matter of principal to avoid the holds at all costs!

This particular rock is known as the Cork Stone and is one of a number of blocks of granite to be found on Stanton Moor, above Birchover in Derbyshire, The granite is the harder rock which has remained as the surrounding plateau was worn away. The Cork Stone stands 15 feet high and, as well as the footholds, has also accumulated a variety of pieces of graffiti, one of which is dated 1613.

The Cork Stone is a naturally occurring outcrop, but Stanton Moor also bears much evidence of human occupation, from as long ago as pre-historic times; probably as a result of it's elevated position with distant views to all sides. Because of this, there are a number of man-made cairns and barrows on the moor, though many are difficult to spot, being pretty effectively covered over with heather. There are also at least 2 small stone circles, the most distinct of which is known as the Nine Ladies and is accompanied by a rock known as the King Stone.

Legend has it that the circle was created when nine ladies were turned to stone for daring to dance on the moor on the Sabbath. The King Stone was the fiddler to whose music they were dancing.

Whatever the truth, the area was obviously of some ceremonial significance around 3,500 years ago and makes an interesting place for a walk today.

1 comment:

  1. I had chance to visit the Nine Ladies a couple of weeks ago and saw the Cork Stone for the first time. Also found the Andle Stone, much easier to climb and more spacious on the top :-)