Thursday, 8 May 2014

Living with history...

My love of history isn't confined to the medieval period. It goes back much further than that. Way back to the 5th or 6th to be precise. The Iron Age.
Carl Wark 

As kids, we spent many happy days roaming the moors above Hathersage. One of our favourite playgrounds was Carl Wark, an Iron Age hill fort. My dad used to fill our heads with wild tales of this mysterious place and its long-dead inhabitants, and we lapped it up, wide eyed and full of wonder. 

While my brothers played, I'd wander alone, exploring the stones of this ancient place, and seeing ghosts at every turn. What must life have been like for those people, living in such an isolated spot?

Like all mysterious places, Carl Wark was woven into local folklore:

" Carl Wark was the site of a British encampment. A Celtic tribe lived here before the Roman legions came toBritain. At the end of the sixth century this area was part of the kingdom of Argoed, governed by Sir Lamoracke, one of the knights of King Arthur's Round Table, who stood next to Sir Launcelot and Sir Tristram in deeds of valour.
Men knew Sir Lamoracke (or Llywarch, to give him his celtic name) as a fierce warrrior. He had twenty-four sons, and at Carl Wark he and they fought the hordes of Loagrians, who invaded the country when the Roman army of occupation left Britain. After a long and bitter defence the knight and the remnant of his forces were driven from the stronghold. Norman Price "The Derbyshire Dales" 1953
Although I no longer live in Sheffield, those amazing places I visited as a child are a still very much a part of me. They shaped the person I am and the way I think.
Carl Wark viewed from Higger Tor.
Was I 'made in Sheffield'.Or did Sheffield, in fact, make me? Maybe a bit of both.

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