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Standing Stone / Menhir

<b>Portbury</b>Posted by hamishImage © Hamish
This site is of disputed antiquity. If you have any information that could help clarify this site's authenticity, please post below or leave a post in the forum.
Nearest Town:Portishead (4km W)
OS Ref (GB):   ST503755 / Sheet: 172
Latitude:51° 28' 32.66" N
Longitude:   2° 42' 56.52" W

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<b>Portbury</b>Posted by hamish <b>Portbury</b>Posted by hamish


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Visited 8.1.11
Really easy to visit this one!
Just off junction 19 of the M5 is the village of Portbury with the pretty church of St Mary the Virgin (this is the church you see when travelling up/down the motorway) As you enter the village look for Church Lane on your right. The stone is easily spotted, next to the church, at the bottom of the dead end. Lots of parking places.
There is an interesting plaque on the stone which states the stone is though to date to 2000BC and quaried from Conygar Hill. It was recovered from a dew pond on 27.9.87 where it had lain since the 1950's (what it was doing in the pond in the first place is another question!)
The stone was re-errected by the Portbury Historical Society and with help from the villagers - good on you all.
The stone is about 6ft high, 2.5ft wide and about 1ft deep.
As I said, really easy to get to and well worth a visit when in the area. Unfortunately I didn't have time to look around the church - maybe next time?
Posted by CARL
10th January 2011ce

By Portbury Church not far from junction 19 on the M5.Re-erected here after being found in a pond which was being drained during the construction of the motorway.There is an information plaque beside the stone. hamish Posted by hamish
14th August 2002ce


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I was reading about this stone in 'Holy Wells of the Bath and Bristol Region' by Phil Quinn. It's my pure speculation, but it could be relevant that the stone was situated by the pool - that is, perhaps the pool was the original place of veneration. The pool (now filled in) and stone were to the north-east of the church. I do realise they have to be in some direction, but it did remind me of the Rudstone Monolith which is also to the north of its church. And if it's a genuine standing stone, it can hardly be a coincidence that they chose to build the church next to it, recognising its importance in some way. Rhiannon Posted by Rhiannon
22nd April 2004ce


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The story on the plaque of the Portbury Stone is as follows

On the 27th of september 1987 this ancient standing stone was recovered from the field below the church after having been buried in an old dew-pond since the early 1950's.

It is thought that the stone was originally erected in the late Neolitic period, ie around 2000 BC. It's precise purpose is not fully understood.

The stone is of a type found commonly in this area and would most likely have been quarried near to Conygar Hill.
The rock itself is of a type called Dolomite Conglomerate
and would originally be reddish-brown arising from the iron deposits in the soil.

Re-erection of the stone was carried out by members of the PORTBURY ASSOCIATION so that it might be preserved for posterity. Thanks are due to many people in the village who assisted in the rescue
Posted by vulcan
2nd May 2003ce