Today’s Treasures – Soulton Long Barrow
During the second lockdown, the Ashton family very kindly offered the opportunity to walk from Soulton Hall, to Soulton Long Barrow following the standing stones marking the way.
It’s the perfect site for a modern barrow as signs of a settlement here go back to the Neolithic period (about 5,500 years ago). In the Bronze Age, a barrow was built to the east, and an Iron Age Hillfort was built at Bury Walls about a mile south east of Weston-under-Redcastle.
The Roman road from Viriconium (Wroxeter) to Mediolanum (Whitchurch) goes through the farm and in the Dark Ages the manor was on the border between Powys and Mercia.
To the north-east of Soulton Hall, the site of a fort is still visible – built after the Conquest of 1066 during the reign of King Stephen and empress Matilda around 1130. It is thought that the remains of a deserted medieval village are located to the north of the hall along Soulton Road. The earliest surviving deed for the manor is dated 1399.
Soulton Long Barrow has been built with niches to safely keep the ashes of loved ones in a calm and private space. Funerals, placement ceremonies and memorial services held there are powerful and moving experiences and the barrow exudes a calm tranquil atmosphere perfect for remembering and celebrating the lives of those who have moved on.
As with all ancient barrows, the burial mound is aligned to the Midsummer solstice – in line with the rising sun on Midsummer’s Day. It stands between two natural ponds, surrounded by trees with a clear view across the fields to Hawkstone Hill.
During 2020 outdoor theatre has been performed in the natural amphitheatre located alongside the barrow.
Published in the January 2021 edition of the Whitchurch Gossip