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Badbury Rings "not a winter sports venue" warns Trust
9:00am Wednesday 23rd January 2013 in News
HARDY snow fans took their sledges to Badbury Rings at the weekend, despite signs asking them not to.
The Iron Age fort, near Wimborne, proved a hit for a around 500 people with toboggans and sledges following inches of snow falling across the county.
The National Trust had placed signs around the area advising people not to use the site as a 'winter sports venue' with their sledges, skis and snowboards on the grass - but the signs were ignored, with one sledger scrawling "get a life" on them.
David Roberts, General Manager at the Kingston Lacy Estate, says the ban on sledging is because of the measures that the National Trust have put into place to preserve the land.
He said: “It is a very important archaeological site.
“We have had to cover some of the areas with mesh, which is under the grass, held in place with pegs. Over time, the grass has grown over them and so they cannot be seen so well.
“It is fine to walk on, as you can't feel them under foot, but a toboggan is a completely different type of thing, as it can catch on the pegs.
“Two years ago, we had a father and son, who went on their toboggan on Badbury Rings, and the boy came off and badly gashed his thigh on one of the pegs.
“If people choose to use their toboggans on the land, we can't stop them, but we would strongly advise them not to.”
Ian Kirk, 53, from Broadstone took these pictures.
He said: “I was at Badbury Rings on Monday, where I spoke to a National Trust ranger, who said there was about 500 people sledging on the ground.
“It also seems that there was a trail of blood left in the snow, where someone had obviously hurt themselves.
“Some people had been quite obnoxious when they had seen the signs and had written things on them, including 'Get a life' and much worse.
“Where the snow had worn down, where people had been on it, you could see the stakes and the pegs.
“What I find funny is that the signs were up, to tell people not to sledge on it, and yet they still were in their hundreds.”