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| Thor's Stone |
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|Description ||Part of the expanse of Thor's Stone near Thurstaston on the Wirral. The highest point on the Peninsula, views across to Liverpool and North Wales.|
| I used to live down the road from THORS ROCK and have visited it on hundreds of occasions over the last 30 years. Unfortunitely you've got close to the rock(about 1/3 of a mile away)but haven't actually been to the site! These pictures are of the promonitory in front of THORS ROCK. There's never been a place called 'Thors Stone' on the Wirral to my knowledge so I don't know who told you that. Thors Rock on the other hand is like a 25ft highX100 ft long sandstone outcrop that looks like a miniture Ayers Rock in Australia. It's scarred by 100,000+ years of natural drain-offs from the rain. It was used as a ritual site by the Vikings who lived in the area 1000 years ago and was named after the Red Bearded Viking God of war due to the fact that the local sandstone(of which the Wirral is mostly made)resembled the colour of his Beard. There is an ancient Holly tree(sacred to the Vikings) growing to the side of the rock which represents the continual unbroken tradition of reverance for the rock from the local 'knowledgable' population. Today it's still used as a sacred spot by Pagans such as myself and a whole new generation of 'Ravers' who hold 2/3 illegal parties there every year(for the past 20 years now). Footage of which can be found on YouTube under the apt title "Thors Bop". |
| Yes, 'Thor's Rock' is a separate sandstone outcrop. The area you have photographed is actually Thurstaston Common. There are two theories about this rock, one of Viking folklore origin (as mentioned above) and a more boring one from the last 200 years. As there appears to be no documented evidence about Viking ritual usage of this site (though the area was a Viking settlement and carries a Norse name), I prefer the most recent theory about the sites origins.|
According to Norman Ellison's book, 'The Wirral Peninsula', the rumour that the stone was used for Viking ritual was created by Sir James Picton (1805-1889). As was typical of the era, myths and legends became taken as fact and stories of blood sacrifices to the God Thor took precedence over the rock's most probable and unexciting origins. The fact is, the area has been quarried for at least 3 centuries for sandstone. 'Thor's Rock' is made of particularly soft material and was left untouched whilst the harder rock around it was quarried, thus leaving it exposed on all sides. Weathering over the years has given it rounded the shape we see today. Unless there is any other factual archaeological evidence to suggest otherwise, the stories of Viking use remain, mythical. I have books by professor Steven Harding who is a leading authority on Wirral's Viking heritage and there is no mention of this site being used for religious purposes. It is only in recent years that New AgePagan followers have taken the Victorian myth to heart and have bestowed status upon it as a sacred place.
As far as the partying on the rock goes, my generation of teenagers back in the very early 80's were doing that long before the rave generation. However, you could count on 2 hands the amount of people who were at our parties and we never got hassled by the Police. We kept it quiet-ish.
Personally, I am more interested in finding out about the little known prehistoric use of the area by early man. There are apparently, rock carvings in the area if you know where to look. This side of the Wirral peninsula did support prehistoric man, but very little has been published about it.
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