It's not every day you can walk up an innocuous farm track on the eastern edge of Bodmin Moor and encounter three full-size (and I mean seriously large) Iron Age thatched huts! Yet here they stand at Trewortha Farm, near North Hill - well out of time, but in a very appropriate space.
On a day that heavy rain had been forecast, this off-the-tourist-track part of the moor was quiet and empty - and if you had squinted a bit, and centred yourself, you could just about have imaged what the inhabitants of the area might have seen and felt 3,000 years ago. There would have been more trees, of course, but the lie of the land - with its storybook tors - and, perhaps more pertinently, the ley of the energies, would not have been that much different.
We walked up from the Moor Gate, investigating burial mounds and kists as we went. We sought locations, numbers and ages of burials - even the types of person formerly interred. Despite the activities of latter-day tomb-raiders, these sites retain much of their energy, probably through having being placed on pre-existing energy lines. The grave robbers may have disturbed the topsoil and even desecrated the bones of the deceased, but, from a wider perspective, they have done little to destroy the importance or purpose of the place.
By the time we reached Trewortha Farm itself, the sounds of dozens of excited teenagers, engaged on a Youth Challenge, had added a new dimension to the location.
The huts at Trewortha may be established on new ground, but they are literally within an easy stone's-throw of numerous ancient hut circles, some of which we investigated. Indeed, this whole area is littered with the remains of stone-age, bronze-age and iron-age cultures, with a smattering of mining remains and medieval activity linking the distant past to the modern cattle farm. The sounds of the youngsters enjoying their outdoor activities on a 21st Century Sunday afternoon, brought new energy to a place that has been a centre of life and death, work and leisure since the dawn of man on these islands.
It was another successful trip for the TDs, and I am sure we all learnt a bit more, as well as enjoying our visit to a site that most of us barely knew existed.
Many thanks to Joy Montague and Graham Reeder for organising the event - and to farmer Graham Lawrence for welcoming us to his unique centre.