Wessex Archaeology was delighted to take visitors from Stanford University (USA), here to study archives at Salisbury Cathedral, on a tour of the iconic sites of Old Sarum and Stonehenge. English Heritage had kindly allowed evening access to both sites with tour guides Alistair Barclay, Chris Brayne and Genie Turton providing local and expert knowledge. Our walk through the earthworks of Old Sarum provided a stunning view of the ‘new’ cathedral from the Norman castle and a visit to the remains of Osmund’s cathedral within the ramparts of the Iron Age hill fort.
This was followed by a visit to the Neolithic temple sites of Woodhenge and Durrington Walls and a walk through the World Heritage Site towards Stonehenge Bottom, along ‘the avenue’ up to Stonehenge. Fittingly our tour ended in the evening sunshine at the centre of Stonehenge, with a stroll through the trilithons and the bluestone circles, and a discussion of the architecture, various carvings and graffiti.
Chris Brayne said, “It was a great opportunity for us to meet the team from Stanford. I was struck by the similarities between the team’s approach to archive material and ours in managing heritage at the landscape scale; looking at the reworking and reuse of material, the changing value placed on components and the impact of previous conservation strategies. We have a great deal to share and we hope to engage in more discussion and collaboration in the future.”