STONEHENGE AND AVEBURY

Trip Start Oct 01, 2008
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310
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Trip End Sep 02, 2009


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Where I stayed
The White Horse Inn

Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Tuesday, August 25, 2009

We pack up and put on our bags and catch the bus into the train station and the train into Victoria Station. People!!! Lots of people are here, coming and going.  We make our way to the circle line via Paddington, where we change somewhere along the way to catch the train out to Heathrow terminals 1, 2, 3, and 5.  It takes us over 1 and hours to get there.  We go into terminal 3 arrivals and find the bus stop to get picked up by the National shuttle to go get the car. 

Once we fill all the forms we go out to choose a compact car.  It is a silvery colour, 5 doors, we check it out for damage - none, it has 1,415 miles so it is new.  We take a couple of pictures so we know what we have.  Len tries out the gears, remember, he is now on the other side, it is manual and he will be shifting with the left hand.  All the pedals are still the same.  Len looks for a place to drive and shift, but there isn't any room, they just want you to leave the lot.  We hand in our papers and are now out on the road.

We have the GPS plugged in and luckily we go out on the left and down onto the highway.  As the miles go on it gets easier.  We stop for lunch at a service station off the highway.  I remind Len he should always be in the centre and I should be on the curb side.  He keeps saying 'keep left’.  To think Len thought he would like the Economy size car.  He finds this car wide and can’t get a feel for where the curb is on the left side.

We make it all the way out to Stonehenge.  It is an exciting, happy feeling place.  The people here seem to be in happy and carefree spirits.

Stonehenge is the most outstanding prehistoric monument in the British Isles.  In 3050 BC the circular ditch and bank (or henge) was dug, in 2600 BC a wooden structure was constructed at the centre, between 2500 and 1500 BC the stone monument was constructed, arranged and re-arranged. 

The large stones are Sarsen stones brought here from Marlborough Downs 19 miles away, the smaller stones are Bluestones (when cut open they are blue inside) come from Wales, some 240 miles from here.  There are burial mounds on the hills near by where they buried the dead.

We listened to the audio guide giving what is thought to be the reason for Stonehenge, how the stones were moved here, how the stones are arranged for summer solstice and the mystical tales associated here.  We hear how people would come with hammers to take souvenirs home, how some of the stones were taken away to be used in other buildings, all before the area became a protected site.  So hard to believe this ever happened or was allowed to happen.

We then went for a walk behind the car park up to the mounds.  They are big mounds, couldn’t get close or into them as they are fenced and locked.

From here we go down the road to Woodhenge in Wiltshire, across the road there is a huge dug out circle.  Behind us is six concentric rings of concrete markers.  The concrete markers are where the timber posts used to be.  This is from about 2300 BC.  We stop to say hello to the sheep in the field across the road.

We now head up to Avebury where there are more stones in circles in a henge enclosing an area of 28 acres.  These were built and altered over many centuries from 2850 BC to 2200 BC.  The stones are associated with pagan devil-worship, people would come to break, burry or destroy them.  One stone fell crushing its destroyer.  We have only a few pictures here, when we came to where the big stones in the circle are we couldn’t find a parking place anywhere (remember this is a small town).

We begin looking for a place to stop for the night.  The first home B & B we stop at they want 60 pounds.  We look for another place and find a Pub further down the road.  They want 65 pounds, but it does include a full English breakfast.  We stay the night, no wifi, there is a TV, we look out onto some ducks and sheep.  Good night!
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