Cardoness Castle: notice signs

IMG_4421-Edit2

Cardoness Castle © David Gill

The top of Cardoness Castle provides views over the estuary. Visitors are discouraged from trying to get on top of the walls. One points out the danger, the other expressly forbids it.

IMG_4418-Edit

Cardoness Castle © David Gill

IMG_4413-Edit

Cardoness Castle © David Gill

The second reproduces the word ‘Notice’: surely redundant on a sign? And the clear indication that ‘visitors are not allowed on wall top’ is ‘by order’; underneath is an erased  line, ‘Ministry of Works’.

IMG_4415-Edit

Cardoness Castle © David Gill

Ministry signs on St Mary’s

Porth_Hellick_sign

Porth Hellick Down © Patrick Taylor

The ancient monuments on St Mary’s on the Isles of Scilly received Ministry signs. The chambered tomb on Porth Hellick Down is described as ‘the best preserved tomb of all those in the islands’, echoing O’Neil’s guidebook, ‘perhaps the best preserved of all those in the islands’. Again, ‘a few potsherds have been found in the chamber’, follows, ‘a few potsherds have been found in this tomb’.

Innisidgen_sign

Innisidgen © Patrick Taylor

At Innisidgen the sign starts with the same description as Porth Hellick. The description in the guidebook, ‘Nothing is known to have been found in the chamber’, follows the sign, ‘the chamber has long since been rifled of its contents’.

Innisidgen_lower_sign

Lower Innisidgen © Patrick Taylor

The sign at Lower Innisidgen echoes the others.

Bants_Carn_sign

Bants Carn © Patrick Taylor

The sign notes, ‘Cremated bones and pieces of pottery were found in the chamber many years ago’, whereas the guidebook states, ‘Four piles of cremated bones were found at the inner end of the chamber many years ago, as well as some pieces of pottery in the passage just outside the entrance to the chamber’.

BantsCarn_village_sign

Bants Carn Ancient Village © Patrick Taylor

Near to Bants Carn Burial Chamber is a village. The sign and guidebook place it to the 2nd–3rd centuries AD, describing it as ‘Roman period’ or even ‘Romano-British’. The sign and guidebook talks of ’round or oval huts … built of large, well-laid granite blocks’. The guidebook continues ‘Paths and garden plots or small fields may also be detected’.

HarrysWalls_sign

Harry’s Walls © Patrick Taylor

A later monument is the artillery fort known as Harry’s Walls.

We are grateful to Patrick Taylor for digitising the images.

Dumbarton Castle: Custodian’s Office

IMG_7721

Dumbarton Castle © David Gill

We may now think of staff at heritage sites being managers, but in the days of the Ministry they were clearly seen as Custodians (see also Sweetheart Abbey). Three signs at Dumbarton Castle on the north side of the Clyde retain the old terminology. Notice the omission of the apostrophe in one of the signs, as well as the different styles of arrow directing visitors to where they can obtain tickets. There is also the inclusion of the polite, ‘Please obtain …’.

IMG_7722

Dumbarton Castle © David Gill

Outside the present ticket office is a slightly more recent sign, reflecting the way that the custodian’s office is not only where tickets can be obtained, but where other items can now be purchased.

IMG_7723

Dumbarton Castle © David Gill

Lindisfarne Priory: pantry

IMG_2177-Edit

Lindisfarne Priory © David Gill

The ‘pantry’ is located in the west range of Lindisfarne Priory. The current English Heritage guidebook defines it on the plan as a cellar, and suggests that the three rooms were created in the middle of the 14th century.

IMG_2176-Edit

Lindisfarne Priory © David Gill