A modern barrow is being built in west Dorset - the first in the county for more than 1,000 years.

The team at Higher Ground Meadow natural burial ground in Corscombe is in the process of building a modern barrow to offer another resting place alongside its woodland and meadow burial sites.

In ancient times, a barrow was a large structure made of earth that people used to build over graves, also known as a Tumulus. It is thought they were used to bury important individuals.

Jo Vassie, of Higher Ground Meadow, went to visit the first modern barrow built in the country for thousands of years, which was in Wiltshire.

She said: “As soon as I saw it, I thought, ‘that’s just wonderful - I want one’.

“It was everything I thought it would be, an amazing place to go into - so still and quiet because you are right under ground.

“We drew it all out and we wanted to maximise the amount of niches [a space in a wall used to place urns containing ashes] we put in because we are selling this as a permanent resting place for ashes, not on a lease hold. Once you pay for your niche, they will stay there.

“This is a modern twist to the ancient barrows. From the outside they will appear like ancient barrows.

“It has ended up being laid out like a clock. You go in at 12 O’clock and at each hour of the clock, the passage leads to a chamber.

“We are going to put a little bit of solar-powered LEDs, just to give a little glow, because the idea is that it isn’t bright as that doesn’t give the right feel.

“We are still very aware that it is about 70 per cent of the population that are cremated, and a lot of people chose cremation a don’t think about what happens after.

“It just absolutely giving people a choice and an amazing experience to come into such a place.”

The build started in January 2018 and it is hoped to be open for use next year and each chamber features a number of niches.

Much like the rest of the burial ground, the barrow will be surrounded by beautiful countryside and a place for families and friends to sit and reflect.

Jo said it was the first to be built in Dorset for more than 1,000 years. It has been made out of Purbeck Stone and the entrance lines up with Glastonbury Tor.

To mark 10 years of Higher Ground Meadow on June 23, the team is holding an open weekend for people to come up and have a look at the barrow in its construction, walk around the grounds and ask questions.

It will be open on June 22 and 23 from 10am to 5pm.

For more information, visit highergroundmeadow.co.uk