Avebury is the most ancient borough in England and in ancient times, more than 4,000 years ago, it was peopled by what were known as "the Beaker people." They were given this name because of the pottery beakers that they made. As the Beaker people had previously been involved in the building of Stonehenge they are thought to have had an important rôle in building the Avebury stone circles as well.
It stands in the heart of the Wiltshire Downs - West of Marlborough. The complete site is more than twenty eight acres in size. As well as the stone circle which is its most famous feature there are two "Avenues" the purpose of which has not yet been identified. There is a bank or rampart, more or less circular in shape, with four pierced entrances that cross a deep ditch on the inside of the bank and within that earthern rampart lies the stone circle.
There is a trail which leads round the two circle of stones but, be warned, it is not particularly wheel-chair friendly because of the steepness of the banks. In the past there were about 100 natural, unquarried stones standing in a large circle. Inside the large circle of stones there used to be two smaller circles of which only four out of the original twentyseven stones survive today in one of the circles. The other small circle of stones has long since vanished entirely - all twentynine stones.
There is a well laid out and friendly Museum on the site
A fine example of the roof-tree structure of the barn.
A Medieval Dove Cote stands to one side of the site and is worth a visit.
Inside you can see the nesting box structures in which Medieval man raised himself a continuous supply of fresh meat for his pies.
Among the many important prehistoric archaeological exhibits in the Museum is this, which is the skeleton of a prehistoric child - which has been given the rather informal name of "Charlie"
An almost complete prehistoric skull. It is items like this in the Museum that make it one of the most important prehistoric archaeological collections in Britain.