I first visited the Rollrights at midsummer about five years ago; there had been a low-key Druid summer solstice ceremony taking place and anyone who wished to was invited to participate. It was a memorable occasion indeed so when offered the opportunity to revisit today, needless to say I did not hesitate. The friend I went with wanted to visit Wychwood, a remnant of an ancient forest in West Oxfordshire and was willing to make a detour (yes please, I said).
My summer sabbatical around the woody byways of the Cotswolds was about to reach its climax.
The Rollrights are on the Oxforshire/Warwickshire border and are true holey stones; nodular, oolitic, limestone they are quite unlike the sarsen, granite, and sandstone stone circles of my previous experience. There is a information notice by the entrance which states admission £1.00 but as nowhere to leave this money, we didn't; the hut that was by the entrance when I visited five years ago no longer exists - I believe burnt down.
Before wandering down to the Whispering Knights dolmen we spent some time walking around the Kings Men circle, marvelling at the shapes and erosions in the stones. What a impressive setting for both circle and dolmen looking out over the Oxfordshire countryside. Back across the road to visit the solitary King Stone, we noticed there is a small cluster of half buried stones a couple of metres uphill from the King Stone – there had been a recent campfire lit inside the cluster with the usual associated rubbish which we collected up (a Homebase catalogue included would you believe).
After my visit I spent quite a bit of time thinking about the Rollrights; usually visiting a stone circle makes me think about 'permanence' in an ever changing world. These stones, permeated as they are with small cavities and holes made me think the opposite ... that all things eventually pass away. Including an ancient stone circle if it happens to be built from limestone.
Wonderful stones, wonderful skyscape! More info here
Posted by tjj
28th July 2010ce
Edited 29th July 2010ce