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New trail launches at Cissbury Ring in South Downs National Park

New trail launches at Cissbury Ring in South Downs National Park

August 13, 2021

Visitors to Cissbury Ring will be able to enjoy a brand new digital interpretation trail to help them explore and understand the landscape seen today.

The exciting project is helping reveal the hidden stories and bring the character of this fascinating site to life. Thanks to funding from the South Downs National Park, the National Trust has worked in collaboration with Worthing Museum and local filmmakers to create the trail.

It will help visitors use local archaeological expertise to connect with the multi-layered history of the site shaped by 6.000 years of industry, defence, farming and ceremony.

Cissbury Ring is an iconic Sussex landmark dominating the surrounding landscape, with views south across the coastal plain to Worthing and as far as Brighton and north across the Weald.

James Brown, National Trust archaeologist, says “Cissbury Ring is a fascinating site rich in heritage that preserves the evidence of human activity from Neolithic people mining flint with antler picks 6,000 years ago through to WWII mechanised defence. There is so much to celebrate at this one site, but many of our visitors are often unaware of the ingenuity and endeavour of the people who have walked this landscape before so this is a great opportunity to start telling their and our stories in an engaging and informative way”.

The trail can be accessed using personal handheld devices including smartphones.

Ten small plaques hidden around the hillfort will reveal a different piece of the landscape puzzle

James Sainsbury, Worthing Museum Archaeologist, added: “This digital interpretation approach allows us to visibly link the site you stand on with the archaeological finds excavated from beneath the ground as well as the maps drawings and photographs captured over 200 years of research from the Worthing Museum collections.”

Anooshka Rawden, Cultural Heritage Lead for the National Park, said: ”We were pleased to be able to fund this fantastic partnership initiative, bringing people new ways to learn about the ‘deep time’ of this special place, and to find out more about how the landscape is cared for by the National Trust today.

“From a prehistoric ‘industrial revolution’ to wartime defence, the story of Cissbury Ring is now one you can follow around the site with your mobile phone.”