Arthur's Stone

Arthur's Stone near Dorstone in Herefordshire is a Neolithic burial chamber that is over 5000 years old. It is under the care of English Heritage who describe it as:

The chamber is formed of nine upright stones, with an enormous capstone, estimated to weigh more than 25 tonnes. It was accessed through the side of the covering mound, via the right-angled passage. There is an isolated stone that probably formed part of a false entrance, perhaps providing a visual focus for ceremonies.

Or as one Trip Advisor contributor described it:

This is just a small group of stones...

There was an article in our local rag (Hereford Times) a few days earlier reporting on some excavations that had taken place a few years earlier. Must have been a slow news day in Herefordshire. This link gives a bit more detail.

We have visited in the past when we had the place to ourselves but this time it was quite busy presumably because of the Hereford Times publicity. There is parking for about 4-5 cars at the monument itself or, if you fancy an uphill walk, you can park in the village of Dorstone and climb Dorstone Hill (just over a mile).

Arthur's Stone was apparently the inspiration for the 'stone table' in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by CS Lewis. The legend that is King Arthur and Camelot has connections with many places - but he definitely slew a giant here because the giant left impressions of his elbows on one of the stones where he fell!

We parked at Arthur's Stone, checked out the monument, had a picnic and then set off for Merbach Hill (1043 ft). This is a level walk of about 5 km (there and back), initially along the road and then across fields filled with harebells, goldfinches, stonechats and sheep to the hill-top trig marker.

There are excellent views of the Golden Valley and the Black Mountains:

Including Hay Bluff (shrouded in cloud today):

And from Merbach Hill you can see Clee Hill (about 50km away):


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