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Arbor Low

Stone Circle & Henge, Derbyshire

The flat slabs of Arbor Low
looking towards the adjoining tumulus
Photo: Alastair McIvor

Click Here for Hi-Res images (45k & 103k)

Click Here for Hi-Res aerial views (37k & 48k)

Click Here for an animated GIF fly-by (100k)

Around fifty huge limestone slabs arranged in a circle in the White Peak District.

Arbor Low (a corruption of 'Eorthburgh Hlaw' meaning 'Earthwork Mound' in some language used in the ancient past of this island) has been described as the stonehenge of the north. Its rugged setting out on the windswept reaches of the limestone plateau of the south Peak District, is the explanation for its limestone pillars. The only circle in Derbyshire built from limestone, the others all being millstone grit (although it is possible that the stones once present in the Bull Ring would have been limestone, as it is also on the limestone section of the Peak District, but these have all long since disappeared).

Arbor Low, is visually the most striking of all the circles in Derbyshire, just because of the size of the place. The stones have long since fallen (or been pushed over) which makes it really hard to photograph, but does not spoil the impression of the place when you are standing in the middle of them. Having said that if the stones were erect it would be a truly awe inspiring place. There is one school of thought which believes the stones were set lying down originally, and have never been standing - but this cannot be true, firstly there are stone holes from where the stones once stood, and more importantly they just look wrong lying down and beg to be restored to their true positions. Pegge records an account from a local man in 1785, that some stones had been standing within his memory.

Aerial Views of Arbor Low: Click Here for hi-res aerial views (37k & 48k)

Click Here for an animated GIF fly-by (100k)

Access: Signposted off the A515 Buxton to Ashbourne Road. Car Park and small entry fee.
Click here for full page mapLocal Map (from Multimap) (use your browser's "back" button to come back)

Rating: General Impression 4, Ambience 3, Access 5

Personal: Thanks to Alastair McIvor for help in compiling this page.  Aerial Photography by JJ Evendon. Other photograph(s) Alastair McIvor

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