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STANTON DREW GREAT CIRCLE

ALTERNATIVE NAME:  GREAT CIRCLE
DESCRIPTION + /

The Great Circle at Stanton Drew is a stone circle shown by geophysical survey to be contained within a circular ditched henge enclosure, and to contain 9 concentric circles, probably made up of closely spaced pits or post holes. The henge ditch is an almost perfect circle with an outer diameter of circa 135 metres, and a width of 5-7 metres. The stone circle itself comprises up to 26 extant upright stones, and may originally have comprised as many as 30. The henge ditch has a large gap or entrance on the north east side. An avenue of standing stones leads away from this north east entrance, though not from its centre, for some 88 metres in the direction of the nearby, smaller, north eastern circle ( record 1097243), before joining up with an avenue leading from that circle. Only one find has been reported from the Great Circle. In the mid 17th century, after one of the stones had fallen, human bones and an object described as a "round bell, like a large horse-bell" were found. While human burial at the foot of a standing stone is by no means unknown, the "bell", whatever it is, suggests some caution over assigning a date to the burial. The Great Circle stands within a complex of standing stone monuments, including the aforementioned North Eastern circle, a second smaller circle to the south west, a cove some distance to the west, and a single stone to the north east, as well as more dubious stones further to the west. See individual records for further details.

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Further information about monuments may be obtained by contacting Archive Services, through the Historic England website.