Tuesday, 7 June 2011

My World Walbury Hill

Walbury Hill

On Saturday we met Gareth and Nina and the children at Walbury Hill, about an hour’s drive from each of our homes. It was a lovely bright sunny day but very windy at almost 1000’. We were able to look down on soaring red kites and up at gliders.
Walbury Hill is a favourite spot for gliders and paragliders. 
Lots of sheep in the distance on the rolling hills
Elliot chases after Eve and Louis towards Inkpen Beacon
A sombre sight
We walked to Combe Gibbet on Combe Down, sometimes called Gallows Down. The double gibbet, 25’ high, was assembled on top of a Neolithic burial mound in 1676 and was used only once. 
Gibbets are usually erected for one body
A married man from Combe and a widow from Inkpen were lovers who killed the man’s wife and son. The pair were tried at Winchester Assizes and hanged and their bodies were hung on either side of the gibbet as an awful warning to all other wrongdoers.
Casting more benign shadows today
The gibbet is not original but tradition decrees that once a gibbet has been erected it must remain.  The present construction is the sixth and has been in place since 1979.
We could see for miles . . .

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  1. Beautiful photos, Janice, but perhaps a little more than I needed to know about gibbets. LOL
    Hope you are doing well today.
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

  2. What a fabulous looking place. I never knew that about gibbets having to stay in place once erected, how fascinating.

  3. Nice place to meet up with friends. I first was amazed to see the gibbet, thinking it was still standing since 1676... but then read this is 6th incarnation. Sombre indeed.

  4. Wonderful shots and interesting tradition.

  5. Wonderful photos! The gibbet is interesting. I guess that couple got what they deserved.

  6. And you talk about the ghosts in my castle!

    he Downs are a wonderful part of the country, your pictures show the wide open landscapes to perfection.

    There is a Gibbet Corner on one of my local walks, but there hasn't been a gibbet there for 200 years. I shall have to tell them that they must resurrect the grisly object.

  7. What a lovely landscape ! (without the gibbet of course ;))

    Makes me think of the show "Escape to the country". which apparently you did.

  8. Nice view and a wonderful place for the kids to run.
    The gibbet is a bit macabre, however. But it's an interesting part of the history of the area.

  9. Okay, you English sometimes go a bit too far in keeping up traditions.
    Lovely landscape though.

  10. Hi there - even though the gibbet is a bit "dark" I think its an important part of the landscape - not every view is going to picture perfect, with rabbits, happy kids and fluffy rabbits

    Interesting post.

    Stewart M - Australia

  11. It sounds like a lovely day out - I can hear the wind buffeting and the children calling.

    Thank you for your sensitive and useful suggestion about writing in my study ... I will let you know if it works!

  12. Beautiful photos and commentary about your part of the world. I enjoyed the background about Gallows Down. Crime doesn't pay!

  13. Very interesting and sad story of the gibbet! BRRR!
    Otherwise, the place looks nice to go for a walk;o)

  14. Beautiful landscape and it looks like a wonderful day to be out. Interesting history on the gibbet.


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