The Cloud

A 1200ft tall hill known as the Cloud dominates the Cheshire plain and is visible for miles around. One of the meanings of the word Cloud is thought to be derived from Anglo-Saxon or Old English word “Clud” meaning a mass of rock, there again there is another possibility as the Welsh word for earthworks is “Clawdd” pronounced “Clowd”, it is possible that this word is Celtic and refers to the British hill fort that used to exist on this hill.

I have also heard the use of the word Cloud as meaning high place, but I think in this instance that it refers to the fort that once used to be here.

This hill at one time would have looked out over the sea, as the Cheshire plain would at one time have been under water and this hill would have been one of the high places in the area which would have remained above sea level.

A view from the Cloud over the Cheshire Plain

The hill contains many different types of grit, shale and feldspar etc which gives the Cloud many different shades of colour, and with the many different plants and flowers such as Purple Heather, Bluebells, Whinberry and Yellow Gorse, which gave Gosberry lane which runs alongside the Cloud its name, all these things make it a very colourful place.

The Various types of people who have inhabited the Cloud over many thousands of years are firstly thought to have been the Battle Axe people of early Nordic strain, who spread to the West from the Caspian sea area, and who built the Bridestones 4000 years ago, although for the first thousand years it would not have borne this name.

The second type of people who were said to have inhabited the Cloud were known as the Beaker people, they came from the Rhineland and they settled on the South Staffordshire Moorlands and in the Peak District. These people were known as the “Armenoid Race”. Thirdly the Goidels or Gaels arrived in 1100 BC, before they eventually moved on to Scotland and Ireland, it was probably these people who were responsible for building the fort that used to exist on the Cloud. The fourth type of people that were said to have lived on the Cloud were the Brythons, or Ancient Britons who have left ample evidence in this area from the many place names that can be linked back to them.

Finally about 100 B.C came the Celts known as the Belgae, an iron using people, whether they actually reached the Cloud has yet to be determined for sure. It has been speculated that human sacrifice took place at one time on the Cloud, this may have occurred above an area known as the Catstones, at a certain time of day and if the sun is shining at the correct angle an image of a cats face can be seen in the rock face.

The Catstones at the rear of Catstones House

This Photograph shows an unusual shape in the rock which according to legend was caused by a giants footstep, it can be found close to the triangulation point on the Cloud.

Does this road sign at the begining of the lane which leads up to the Cloud refer to the gorse which can be found growing on it, or does it mean Gods Bury Hole, refering to a leader or a Chieftain buried in this locality or perhaps at the nearby Bridestones?

Does this strange carving found below the triangulation point depict a UFO?

3 Responses to “The Cloud”

  1. Interesting blog, I grew up on Biddulph Moor and have visited the Cloud many times, it has great history. I first saw the strange carving below the trig point in the early eighties when my father showed it to me, his theory is it is depiction of an asteriod or comet, possibly from an event at the end of the last ice age around 10,000 bc. There is also a more recent carving on the top of a small face.

    It certainly matches up with orther interesting sites in the area such as the Troughstones and the Bridestones.

  2. Hi blakemere, sorry for the very late reply! The troughstones is a standing stone between The Cloud and Biddulph Moor, its sits on top of the large mound shaped hill. The Cloud has many alignments with local features including the nearby Bridestones and Mow Cop. It seems to me to be the center of a network of important points created after the floods of the last ice age receeded.

    St Edwards Church in Leek has a double sunset alignment with The Cloud at Summer solstice.

    Have you seen the other strange carvings below the trigpoint? I also have a picture of a very weathered long thin face taken near the base.

    In the woods at the back of The Cloud, my father also showed me evidence of round dugouts about ten feet in diameter and weathered rut tracks.

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