The pleasure of finding things out

‘The pleasure of finding things out’ is a phrase spoken by one of my hero’s – American theoretical physicist Richard Feynman.

I’m in complete agreement. On a more mundane level my curiosity has been to discover how the military boundary marker stones, littering our heathland, were made. Here are photos of them.

Some have believed them to be made from granite, with masons carving the letters into them. I was sceptical, thinking it more likely that they were cast concrete.

I’m giving a short presentation soon to the local group of the Milestone Society, and I really wanted to say what they’re made of. Joy of joys. I found this,

They were made of concrete, cast in moulds, allowing each to be impressed with its own unique number. Source: RCAHMS paper on collaboration with Defence Estates.

Now, all I have to research is the process of their manufacture – the how and the where.

6 thoughts on “The pleasure of finding things out

  1. Don’t quite know what happened for the blog post to disappear. I found the early part of the article on Facebook – and reconstructed the rest.

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  2. I’ve alwys wondered how & why that horizontal BS in the 3rd pic got there – about half-a-mile from its proper place …… a couple of years ago I removed the soil covering the inscription, hence knowing where it should be …..

    PS. This Jury’s out on Concrete vas Granite !

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  3. The RCAHMS paper said “later stones were cast in concrete” implying earlier ones were not.

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  4. …. and it may well be that the comment is specific to the area being discussed …. I think the BS’s in this area are late 1870s into 1880s …… when the Land was bought by the Army and the local Commoners paid a small lump sum in compensation for the loss of Donkey grazing, Turbery & Firewood gathering (brentmoor used to be stick-bare then, compared to todays scrubby Birch & Pine …….

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