The Modern Antiquarian. Stone Circles, Ancient Sites, Neolithic Monuments, Ancient Monuments, Prehistoric Sites, Megalithic MysteriesThe Modern Antiquarian

Willy Hall's Wood Stone

Cup and Ring Marks / Rock Art


An easy route is to approach from the east over Ilkley Crags and past the Pepperpot Rock, this brings you to the back of Willy Hall's Wood.

This is one of my favourite spots to while away time on these moors. The atmosphere is buzzing and it's not hard to see why this would have been a sacred spot in prehistoric times... in fact, it still is now. Willy Hall's Wood is a mound surrounded by two streams which drain off of Green Gates and join again at the bottom of the mound at Willy Hall's Spout. The stream then flows down into Ilkley under Brooke Street and joins the Wharfe at the bridge near the Roman Fort of Olicana.

Near the crossing of the eastern stream is an upright boulder with a number of large bowls or cups on it's eastern face. I'm uncertain whether they were fashioned or are natural (I have seen many similar features on a number of rocks around Ilkley Moor), but I am certain that it's not there by accident and feels very much like an 'entrance' to the site. A few yards north of the main rock is a cluster of small boulders, one of which has a small cup on it's top.

Unfortunately, Willy Hall's Wood Stone still bears the marks of someone's utter stupidity. As previously shown here, someone has followed the design in red paint and added runic nonsense to the north facing side of the stone. The paint seems to be an acrylic and has dried to a rock hard, matt finish which will take decades to weather away naturally. A curse on the backward thinking motherf*cker.

Still, even this vandalism can't detract from the beauty and sacred intent of this spot.
Kozmik_Ken Posted by Kozmik_Ken
23rd April 2004ce

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