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Report - Vortigern Cave, Margate, Kent - Feb 2013

Discussion in 'Underground Sites' started by obscurity, Oct 25, 2013.

  1. obscurity

    obscurity Flaxenation of the G!!!
    Regular User

    Jan 20, 2010
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    Visited with Space-Invader, Wevsky, Urban Ginger and Fortknox0

    Margate Caves is a small cave, a single tunnel only, consisting of the steep entrance, leading up to a circular chamber called the 'Rotunda', a kind of roundabout. Beyond that is the 'Serpentine Passage' to a rectangular room called the 'Altar Chamber', which terminates the cave at the far end.

    The cavern dubbed as 'Dungeon' is a curious double chambered excavation below the floor of the main cave. It certainly was not a mining operation but the original purpose is not known. Also, for primary use as a dungeon it is not convincing. The cave is not very useful for smugglers either, as there is no connection to the sea and the only way to get into the caves originally was down a shaft, which would not facilitate the stealthy use needed for smuggling operations.

    Somewhere near the close of the 18th Century, a man of eccentric habits, named Francis Forster, built a large house in Margate which he named after the county of his birth - Northumberland House. In or about the year 1798 his gardener, digging behind the house, made the discovery of the Caves. A private entrance was cut. It was during this time that the cave murals were created. In 1914, a new entrance was made from the cellar of the vicarage and this is the entrance used today.

    In 1914, a new entrance was made from the cellar of the vicarage, which is the entrance used today. The vicarage (being integrated as part of Northumberland House) was part of Northumberland House and was destroyed during World War II. The original entrance was a simple shaft from the cellars, and a steep flight of stairs takes the visitor down to the main cave today.

    The Interesting feature is definitely the cave paintings, created after the rediscovery. One is called the Thanet Giant. According to folklore, they were painted by a local artist named Brazier, but whoever he was: in order to obtain a surface on which to paint, the painter smoothed the great chalk wall. To many modern archeologists this act is nothing less than vandalism, or at least a willful act of destruction of cultural heritage. However, this modern viewpoint was not a concern for anyone at the time: he therefore innocently destroyed many interesting and valuable tool marks by this action. Some of the artworks created by him, or at another time are unusual paintings, such as that of two somewhat faded soldiers in the uniform of the era of George III. They appear to be guarding, one on each side, the entrance to a narrow and gloomy passage.

    I had visited this site a few years previous and then it was secured with the surface buildings being removed and secure hatches fitted over the entrances but as luck would have it the Thanet boys bashed our heads together and devised a plan…




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    the126, WildBoyz and PatientTheory like this.

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  2. WildBoyz

    WildBoyz Is this the future?
    Regular User

    Mar 16, 2014
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    Those pics are ace. Great report :thumb
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