West Kennet Avenue

West Kennett WPP1070837

The southernmost surviving length. View from the north.

Location

England Wiltshire Rest of England SU 1032 6975
Lat 51.4266585   Long -1.852898365

West Kennet Plan2

Simplified plan of the Beckhampton stone alignment. (Source: Stonehenge-Avebury.net and Google Earth).

Characteristics

Type: Double Length: 2500m
No. of stones: 200 Size of stones: Only large
Orientation: 138° Altitude: 161m
Upper end: Stone circle Lower end: Henge and stone circle
Straight (Yes or No)  : Sea View: No
Context:  Ritual landscape
Notes: Reveals abound as one walks along this row through a particulary rich prehistoric landscape. Various cairns and other monuments appear and disappear throughout the length of the alignment.

Other Information

Public Access:  Yes
Land Status: World Heritage Site
Scheduled Ancient Monument: Yes

Identification

Category: Plausible. No doubts have been expressed regarding the prehistoric interpretation of this row.


Photographs

West Kennett WPP1070831

Southern length of the best preserved section. View from the north.

West Kennett WPP1070847

Eastern side of the row. View from the north.

West Kennett WPP1070855

Looking northward along the row. Avebury henge is hidden from view behind the rising ground. View from south.

West Kennett WPP1070859

Looking northward along the row.

West Kennett WPP1070879

Looking northward along the row. Avebury is hidden by the rising ground.

West Kennett WPP1070868

The sinuous character of the row as it ascends the ridge south of Avebury is clearly apparent.

West Kennett WPP1070873

In common with many rows the West Kennet alignment is far from straight.

West Kennett WPP1070932

View from The Sanctuary of the alignment leading up the ridge towards Avebury. Windmill Hill barrows are clearly visible on the skyline.

West Kennett WPP1070891

On reaching the brow of the ridge first Windmill Hill and then Avebury are revealed.

West Kennett WPP1070890

The barrows on Windmill Hill are revealed on the sky line just before the ridge of the brow is reached.

West Kennett WPP1110566

The concentric stone circle known as The Sanctuary at the southern end of the alignment. 

West Kennett WPP1110573

The Sanctuary at the southern end of the alignment. View from east.

Access Information

Car parking is provided at a price at SU 09959 69653, but access to the stone circles, henge and stone row is free. From the car park head into the village and make your way to the southern gap in the henge. Carefully cross the road and the first stones of the row can be seen standing beside the road.


Online Resources 

Megalithic Portal     Modern Antiquarian     PastScape     Avebury

National Trust

Other References

Burl, A., 1993, From Carnac to Callanish – The prehistoric rows and avenues of Britain, Ireland and Brittany, Yale University Press, New York and London, pg. 217.

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