Ragged Stone Hill

2015-12-24 14.20.40

We call it “Billy Two Peaks,” although we’re not entirely sure why. It’s really called Raggedstone Hill and features in a wonderful local legend: if the shadow of the twin-peaked Raggedstone falls on you, you are doomed. The curse dates back to a monk from Little Malvern who, after an illicit dalliance with a local girl, was forced to climb the Raggedstone every day on hands and knees. He eventually cursed the hill and the legend was born (told in Charles Grindrod’s novel, The Shadow of the Raggedstone).

2015-12-24 13.44.29
Dad walking through the ash woods on the eastern flanks

The summit of Raggedstone is marked both with Red Earl’s Dyke and the prehistoric works that are common on the southern hills.

2015-12-24 14.01.46
On the eastern peak looking west

The hill features in a song by Britpoppers Dodgy and in a poem by Wilfrid Gibson.

As I was walking with my dear, my dear come back at last,
The shadow of the Ragged Stone fell on us as we passe

And if the tale be true they tell about the Ragged Stone
I’ll not be walking with my dear next year, nor yet alone.

And we’re to wed come Michaelmas, my lovely dear and I,
And we’re to have a little house, and do not want to die.

But all the folk are fighting in the lands across the sea,
Because the King and counsellors went mad in Germany.

Because the King and counsellors went mad, my love and I
May never have a little house before we come to die.

And if the tale be true they tell about the Ragged Stone
I’ll not be walking with my dear next year, nor yet alone.

Advertisements