Avebury Barn Gallery in need of restoration funding

The Avebury Barn Gallery

This lovely 17th century thresher barn, at the heart of Avebury, is also a museum housing a selection of Alexander Keiller’s finds, along with interactive displays and activities which bring the history and landscape of the area to life. The Barn Gallery however is now in desperate need of a new thatch roof, and some £80,000 will have to be found before work can commence.
Nigel Kerton writing in the The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald today reports that -

"People who live in Avebury or who visit the village and would like to have a say about the way the village famous for its stone circles and Silbury Hill is managed, will be given an opportunity when the World Heritage Site Management Plan is updated. World Heritage Site officer Sarah Simmons said it was vitally important that those with an interest in the village were involved in revising the last management plan created in 2005.

"There will be two opportunities for the public to put forward their ideas and suggestions, at the Avebury Social centre next Tuesday. Ms Simmonds will be available to answer questions and listen to ideas at drop in sessions in the Social Centre on Avebury High Street next Tuesday between 2 -7 pm and in Marlborough Library on Monday, August 13, between 2 -7pm."

More here.

Modern Avebury: Ronald Hutton

Modern Avebury by Ronald Hutton. 32 in the Stonehenge and Avebury Revised Research Framework (SARRF) by Wessex Archaeology.

The Stonehenge and Avebury Revised Research Framework (SARRF) will for the first time provide a united historic environment research agenda and strategy for the Avebury and Stonehenge World Heritage Site (WHS). The two parts of the WHS currently have separate research frameworks that were created at different times and in different formats. The SARRF will update and harmonise the existing frameworks to create a single research framework comprising a resource assessment and a single research strategy with a five-year currency. The SARRF will also develop a method of monitoring the progress of the strategy to facilitate its revision.

Professor Hutton writes -

"Between 1841 and 1871 the population of the [Avebury] settlement virtually doubled, so that it pressed even harder on the ancient remains. Small wonder that visiting antiquarians began to refer to the village as a whole with resentment and concern, Joseph Hunter calling it a ‘vile hamlet’ in 1829 and Sir John Lubbock a ‘beautiful parasite’ in 1865... [Lubbock in 1872] ...when land containing some of the remaining stones was offered for sale as a potential housing development... bought some himself to block development..."

2012 Summer Solstice Observance

The National Trust has announced that -

The summer Solstice observance at Avebury is expected to be very busy and there will be limited car parking as a result. From Wednesday 20 June until mid-afternoon on Friday 22 June there will be a temporary campsite alongside the car park opening at 9am on Wednesday 20 June and closing at 2pm on Friday 22 June.

There'll be less than one hundred tent spaces, allocated on a first come first served basis. They are expected to be in high demand. There'll be no camping available on the weekends either side of the Solstice.

More here.

Julian Richards to lead series of walks around the World Heritage site of Avebury

Lewis Cowen writing in the The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald today reports that -

TV archaeologist Julian Richards is to lead a series of walks around the World Heritage site of Avebury this summer and autumn. Dr Richards, who presented BBC’s Meet the Ancestors, is a noted expert on the archaeology of Avebury and Stonehenge and will be leading the Wessex Walks on Wednesday, June 6, Saturday, September 1, and Sunday, October 21.

The Wessex Walks are part of a programme of study days running at museums, galleries and sites all over Britain throughout 2012.

More here.

Avebury and Stonehenge celebrations for World Heritage Day

Jill Harding writing in The Salisbury Journal yesterday reports yesterday that -

A CELEBRATION of World Heritage Day is set to take place at Stonehenge and Avebury in April. People are being invited to join English Heritage experts and discover the prehistoric landscapes and how World Heritage Site status is helping to conserve them. The event, being held between 10am and 6pm on April 18, is also a celebration of the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention. Tickets cost £35 per person and must be booked in advance.

Contact English Heritage customer services on 0870 333 1181 for more information and to reserve a place.

More on UNESCO’s 2012 World Heritage Convention here.

Barefoot at the Barge?

Designed by Mathewson Waters Architects and built by the award winning Green Oak Carpentry Company

Visitors to the Avebury World Heritage Site this year may be able to take advantage of the new arts venue at the Barge Inn, Honeystreet, Alton Barnes.

2012 will mark another milestone in the pub’s 200 year history. Honeystreet Ales are undertaking a major transformation of the old barn site, constructing a beautiful new visual and performing arts space, ‘The Barefoot’, right next to the Barge Inn. Designed by Mathewson Waters Architects and built by the award winning Green Oak Carpentry Company, construction starts in March. The £250,000 project, funded by Honeystreet Ales, will provide an exciting and inspirational new arts space.

The Barge Inn is situated alongside the Kennet and Avon Canal and within walking distance of the Anglo-Saxon church at Alton Barnes and the Norman church (with its ancient yew tree and other pagan associations) at Alton Priors. Avebury, Silbury and West Kennet Long Barrow are some 15 minutes drive away.