Outdoor cooking blamed for fire at ancient Derbyshire stone circle site

Outdoor cooking has been blamed after part of an ancient stone circle site in Derbyshire was damaged by fire during the recent heatwave.

Tuesday, 2nd August 2022, 9:47 am
Updated Tuesday, 2nd August 2022, 9:53 am
Damage was caused to an area around Nine Ladies Stone Circle on Stanton Moor when an open fire was used to cook food (Picture: Derbyshire Rural Crime Team)
Damage was caused to an area around Nine Ladies Stone Circle on Stanton Moor when an open fire was used to cook food (Picture: Derbyshire Rural Crime Team)

Around 200 square metres of moorland at the Nine Ladies Stone Circle site on Stanton Moor was charred in the open blaze on July 18.

No damage was caused to the stones themselves but, as a scheduled monument, the site is protected by law.

Police have now appealed for information to help catch the ‘reckless individuals’ responsible.

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"It's clear to see from the images taken that someone has had an open fire to cook food," PC Emerson Buckingham from Derbyshire’s rural crime team told the BBC.

"This is one of many fires caused, not only this year but for many years, by people who thinks it's OK to start open fires or have barbecues on land that is tinder dry."

The monument is an early Bronze Age stone circle, according to English Heritage.

It was traditionally believed to depict nine ladies turned to stone as a penalty for dancing on Sunday.