Isle of Albion
Last Update (13.11.2022): Images refreshed with a selection from a later visit.
One of Britain's best preserved chambered cairns.
First Photographed: Sunday 28th March 2010
Last Photographed: Sunday 17th July 2022
Other Names: Castell Carreg, Llech-y-Filiast, Maes-y-Filiast
Site rating:  

Tinkinswood is a wedge-shaped cairn, dating back to around 4000BC. The limestone capstone is around 24 feet by 15 feet, weighs roughly 36 tonnes, and is believed to be the largest in Britain. The monument is fronted by a forecourt of drystone walls flanking a passage leading to a single inner chamber. Originally, the tomb would have been covered by a mound extending to the rear of the monument.

Various legends are associated with Tinkinswood, including the story that anyone spending the night here preceding May Day, St John's Day or Midwinter day would either die, be driven mad, or become a poet.

Tinkinswood is protected to a degree by its distance from the road, but conversely, this also makes a popular drinking spot for people from the surrounding area. There is frequently evidence of small parties, gatherings or overnight stops here. It's also not unusual to encounter a slow but steady trickly of fellow visitors during the busier months.

Despite this, Tinkinswood is a pleasant site to visit. It's an impressive monument - distinctive in character and visually striking. The immense capstone can't fail to make an impact when visiting for the first time. Unfortunately, the same can be said for the overhead powerline, which detracts a little from the ambience of the site.