Swinside Stone Circle, Cumbria

Swinside Stone Circle, Cumbria
Photo R.M.

In gentle isolation about a mile along a farm track, Swinside, also known as Sunkenkirk, stone circle is a lovely well-preserved circle with a charm of its own. Its alternative name is from a legend that the Devil caused the stones, intended for building a church, to sink at night into the ground. Many of the stones are still standing - curiously those that have fallen have all fallen inwards. Waterhouse (14) reports an explanation that sheep sheltered in the lee of the stones, and their hooves have worn hollows over the years. Whatever secrets the stones hold, Swinside still charms the occasional visitors that come to partake of the peaceful atmosphere of this site, with its stones set in an almost perfect circle of 28.7 m diameter.

The stones are very close together, a characteristic of the earlier larger stone circles. The modern-day gaps at the E and the SW were filled with stones originally.

Swinside Stone Circle, Cumbria
photo G.B
Swinside Stone Circle, Cumbria
photo G.B
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