Following shortly after its appearance on ITV’s ‘Griff’s Great Britain’ in February, Old Oswestry’s story is reaching a national audience once again.
The 3,000 year-old hillfort is set to feature in the next episode of BBC Radio 4’s “Open Country” being broadcast this Thursday (April 21).
While Griff’s visit made just a few minutes of screen time, BBC Radio 4 is dedicating a full half-hour programme to the hillfort rated among Britain’s top archaeological sites.
Presenter Helen Mark interviewed heritage experts and local residents, including representatives of the HOOOH Community Group, when she visited at the end of March.
In the broadcast, she discovers why the hillfort has been dubbed the “Stonehenge of the Iron Age” and how plans for housing might affect the landscape. There is also a spotlight on its use to train soldiers in trench warfare and mortar practice during World War One, and on Oswestry war hero and poet Wilfred Owen.
The programme preview goes on to say: “Helen also meets the people for whom Old Oswestry hillfort is a constant source of inspiration for both exercise and artistic endeavours.”
The Open Country programme is described as a “Countryside magazine featuring the people and wildlife that shape the landscape of the British Isles”.
For those tuning in this Thursday, the programme goes out at 3pm.
As well as being steeped in history, Old Oswestry is valued and enjoyed for its wildlife and as greenspace for walking, recreation, relaxation and giving stunning views over the surrounding landscape.
In the face of significant local and national opposition, housing development east of the hillfort was approved at the end 2015 on Shropshire Council’s SAMDev local plan. The HOOOH Community Group is continuing the legacy to protect and promote the hillfort and its landscape as the hub of the “Oswestry Heritage Gateway”.