Scottish Tour Guide's Blog

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Rollright Stones, Cotswolds, England.

This evening, I am posting information on the prehistoric circle known as the Rollright Stones. This site is located in Oxfordshire, England, about 2.5 miles NNW of Chipping Norton in the Cotswolds region.

The circle together with two other prehistoric monuments is located close to a prehistoric trackway at the edge of a ridge which overlooks the village of Long Compton below.

Landscape view of Long Compton from the King Stone.

Rollright is a perfect circle built of local oolitic limestone. More facts:

  • The original circle comprised eighty pillars situated shoulder to shoulder except at the south-east where there is an entrance.
  • May date from the Late Neolithic to Early Bronze Age (3000 BC to 1800 BC). No remains or archaeology have been discovered inside the circle.
  • The structure, including two outlying portals, creates an astronomical sight line very close to the rising of the southern moon at midsummer.

Associated Sites

Below is an image of the Whispering Knights, the rectangular ruin comprising five large slabs which are the remains of a portal dolmen facing south-eastwards. This site is located 1140 feet ESE of the main circle.

Whispering Knights, Rollright, England

Below is an image of the King Stone which is situated about 230 ft NNE of the circle. This is over 8ft high and could have been the marker stone for a prehistoric burial mound.Burials close to the King Stone have been dated at around 1800 BC and 1770 BC which suggests that the King Stone may have been erected about 1000 years later than the main circle.

King Stone, Rollright, England

Castlerigg Stone Circle, Keswick, England.

This evening, I am posting information on Castlerigg Stone Circle near Keswick in the English Lake District. This location is about thirty-seven miles S.W. of Carlisle.

Key facts and information:

  • Situated 1.5 miles E of Keswick.
  • Dates from about 3200 BC and may rank as one of the earliest stone circles in Europe.
  • Spectacularly situated among the mountains.
  • Thirty-eight stones survive out of original forty-two stones.
  • The stones are of local metamorphic slate.
  • The stones are 3 ft-5 ft in height and stand on the perimeter of a flattened ring.
  • To the north a wide entrance is formed by two tall stones, 5 ft 6″ and 5 ft 8″ in height.
  • At the S.E corner stands a pillar 8 ft 3″ high. This is aligned with the November or Samhain sunrise.

Video clip of Castlerigg

Site of Battle of Linlithgow Bridge, 1526.

This evening, I am posting information on the Battle of Linlithgow Bridge which took place near Linlithgow on September 4th 1526, about nineteen miles west of Edinburgh, Scotland’s capital, close to the River Avon.

Despite the heavy casualties on the day the actual battle site is partly built over and is not commemorated or marked.

The cause of the battle was an attempt by the mother of the young King James V, Queen Margaret, to release her son from the clutches of self-appointed guardian, Archibald Douglas at time of a power vacuum following the death of James IV at the Battle of Flodden, in 1513.

Although the Queen had a nominally superior force of 10,000 men under the Earl of Lennox vs 2500 under the Earl of Arran, the larger force became trapped between the marshy ground close to the River Avon and the nearby high ground occupied by Arran’s force with Lennox’s position exacerbated by arrival of reinforcements totalling 3000 men from Edinburgh. Outcome was defeat for the Queen’s force with at least 3000 dead including Lennox.

River Avon near battle site.

Remains of Manuel Nunnery which is shown on map above. This was occupied by an order of nuns at time of the battle.