Cup-and-Ring Stones: OS Grid Reference – SE 0578 4395
Loadsa ways to get to this little outcrop, which the Boughey & Vickerman survey (2003) says comprises of five different carvings (CRs 33-37). I’m not so sure misself. When Stuart Feather first found these in the 1950s, he only thought three stones were carved, which I think is the more accurate.
Most folk would probably prefer to walk down the slope from Holden Gate down the footpath past Jaytail Farm, then dropping down to the very bottom of the fields (south) where you’ll see a small knoll with a cluster of rocks just in front of the tree-line. But I wandered up thru the ‘Private’ (ahem!) woodland, wet-thru in the pouring rain, and clambered over the wall right to the very spot (the old dowser’s ‘seek-and-find-rock-art’ nose worked again!).
Archaeology & History
Listed in John Hedge’s (1986) survey as carvings 1-5, I’d say there’s one “definite” carving here, but the others – comprising simply of cups – are a little dubious. The main carving has at least six definite cup-markings, found on the rock at the highest point of the knoll at the bottom of the field. The drawing in Hedge’s survey shows as many as 12 cups on this stone, but I’m not totally convinced. Another stone right next to the main one has, perhaps, a cup-marking or two on it – but again, these may be natural.
Of the other alleged carvings, it was difficult to work out as they were literally covered in tons of cow-shit. It seems this rock-outcrop is the local bovine toilet! A lovely secluded place though, with plenty of wildlife to see. Next stop from here: the great Holden waterfalls!
- Boughey, K. & Vickerman, E.A., Prehistoric Rock Art of the West Riding, WYMCC: Wakefield 2003.
- Feather, S., ‘Three Bronze Age Rock Carvings near Keighley,’ in CHAGB 4:3, 1959.
- Hedges, John D., The Carved Rocks on Rombald’s Moor, WYMCC: Wakefield 1986.
© Paul Bennett, The Northern Antiquarian