Isle of Albion
Photographed: Monday 14th June 2004
Site rating:

West Kennet avenue snakes off from the South entrance of the Avebury Henge. Originally running for over 2km and consisting of 100 pairs of stones, it terminated at the now destroyed Sanctuary stone circle. The Sanctuary was recorded by Stukeley as consisting of two rings, one within the other. At a diameter of over 40 metres, the widest ring was large enough to contain Stonehenge.

I always find it amazing that it's still possible to find some solitude when visiting Avebury. The monument is continually busy, but the scale of the place means that the tourists are usually spread fairly thinly. Even better though, West Kennet avenue is slightly off from the main site and is often overlooked. This means that even on the busiest days, there's a good chance that you'll be able to enjoy it's magic without disturbance.

Avebury is a site of unrivalled magnitude. Visiting West Kennet Longbarrow and Silbury Hill helps to put the scale of the surrounding symbolic landscape into perspective. Wandering down West Kennet avenue further enhances an appreciation of the scale of the place. Even on the sunniest of days, it's easy to imagine torchlit processions of Neolithic people approaching the henge down the avenue of stones and the sense of awe that must have been inspired. It's humbling to think that the exact nature of their beliefs, rituals and ceremonies will probably be a mystery for the rest of time.