The discovery of rare ‘witch marks’ at Creswell Crags has seen the Derbyshire heritage site ‘go global’- and enjoy its ‘best February half-term yet’ as thousands descended for sell-out tours of the find.
The collection of 18th century ‘apotropaic’ marks, which were previously dismissed as graffiti, were discovered in the Crags’ caves in February and are thought to be the largest assemblage of witch marks in the UK.
Superstitious residents living in post-medieval Creswell are believed to have etched the frenzy of letters, numbers and patterns on the cave walls to protect against witches and curses.
Paul Baker, director of Creswell Crags, said that interest in the discovery’exceeded all expectations’.
He said: “On the day the news was released our team were busy fielding phone enquiries and from around the world.
“The day was regularly interspersed by cries of astonishment as we were contacted by major international broadcasters and publishers or discovered coverage from the furthest points around the globe.
“The story has now been reported on every continent and has been translated into many languages.
“We are still reeling with excitement.”
Following the discovery, economy has been boosted for the Creswell Heritage Trust, resulting in the best February half-term on record- with help from some fantastic weather.
The ‘phenomenal’ resonse saw every single tour of the witch marks fully booked throughout the holidays.
Witch mark cave tours are priced at £9 for adults, £7.50 for concessions and £6 for children- book at www.creswell-crags.org.uk.
Read the original article and watch the video here: https://www.derbyshiretimes.co.uk/news/portal-to-hell-hundreds-of-historical-witch-marks-discovered-in-derbyshire-cave-in-significant-discovery-1-9596729