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West Kennet Long Barrow, Avebury

(4.9/5 based on 200+ reviews on the web)
The West Kennet Long Barrow is a Neolithic tomb or barrow, situated on a prominent chalk ridge, near Silbury Hill, one-and-a-half miles south of Avebury in Wiltshire, England. The site was recorded by John Aubrey in the 17th century and by William Stukeley in the 18th century.Archaeologists classify it as a chambered long barrow and one of the Severn-Cotswold tombs. It has two pairs of opposing transept chambers and a single terminal chamber used for burial. The stone burial chambers are located at one end of one of the longest barrows in Britain at 100 m: in total it is estimated that 15,700 manhours were expended in its construction. The entrance consists of a concave forecourt with a facade made from large slabs of sarsen stones which were placed to seal entry.The construction of the West Kennet Long Barrow commenced about 3600 BC, which is some 400 years before the first stage of Stonehenge, and it was in use until around 2500 BC. The mound has been damaged by indiscriminate digging, but archaeological excavations in 1859 and 1955-56 found at least 46 burials, ranging from babies to elderly persons. The bones were disarticulated with some of the skulls and long bones missing. It has been suggested that the bones were removed periodically for display or transported elsewhere with the blocking facade being removed and replaced each time. Recent re-analysis of the dating evidence suggests that the 46 people all died within 20 – 30 years of each other, and that the tomb was open for 1,000 years.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • You could quite easily drive past this place as it is not really visible from the main road. If you go past Silbury hill on your left you are nearly there. If you go past it on your right you have gon...  more »
  • Took the kids here after the stones at Avebury. Took a little while to find (Google took me the wrong way) but well worth the visit. Took 15 minutes to walk up the hill from the roadside carpark and t...  more »
  • If you love history or anthropology make the trip to this site. There's an awe to walking up the hill and coming across this beautiful little mound. Then walking inside and feeling like you're part of...  more »
Google
  • Nice that you can enter the chambers. Full of history and great views from the hill.
  • Beautiful historic area, good for walking dogs. Though god help anyone who goes on the farmer's land because he sees everything.
  • A great place to go, full of mystery and it's absolutely free which is a bonus.
  • This is a long walk from the road but definitely worth it. There are renovations at the moment so there are parts you can't walk on.
  • Enjoy a number of nearby beatiful neolithic sites by walking from one to the other, 20 minutes strolls between each of the sites through the beautiful landscape, all sites are free.