Collectanea. 1 59
The road is also called Akney Way and the Drove Road, on account of the number of sheep driven along it at fair time. It is said to go all round the world, so that if you keep along it and travel on you will come back to the place you started from. It is also said to go from sea to sea. A drover who had been " every- where," Bucks., Oxfordshire, Herts., all over Wales, had always found the Akney Way wherever he had been. (Heard in 1891.)
In April, 1892, I walked along the Icknield Way from Crow- marsh, in Oxfordshire, to Dunstable, in Bedfordshire (a distance of 35 miles). I was unable to gain any further information about the legend previously mentioned, but, all along my route, heard that the road went all round the world, or that it went all through the island, that it went from sea to sea, that it went "from sea- port to sea-port."
A little way off the road, near to Eddlesborough (Bucks.) is a place called Bloodcot or Bloodcut Hill, where blood has worn the turf off and left the chalk bare.
On Dunstable Downs (Bedfordshire) is a place called Pigs' or Ligs' Hill, distinguished by a large patch of bare chalk, showing conspicuously among the turf. Here, on Good Friday, young people meet together and throw oranges down the hill-side, and then run after them. (April, 1892.)
Grim's Bank, near Mongewell, "goes, ditch and bank, all round the world," and was thrown up in the time of Cromwell ; so I was told by some shepherds in April, 1892. They further told me that it was a bank on the low ground and a ditch on the hills, and pointed out two clumps of trees on the Berkshire Downs, some miles away, where the ditch (or bank) touched the hills ; the place by the clumps of trees is called Scotchman's Nob. One man told me that Grim's Bank was made by the Romans, and never used, and that it goes all the way into Wales. (1892.)
There is a tree in Nettlebed Wood called the Nidget Tree. It is different from all the trees around. Lovers used to go into the wood, and the youth would give the maiden a leaf from this tree.
Of the group of stones known as "The Five Whispering Knights," near RoUright, it is said that if you place your head in the midst of them you can hear the sound of their whispering. (1882.)