West Kennet Long Barrow is a Neolithic tomb or barrow, located near Silbury Hill close to Avebury in Wiltshire. It was built over five and a half thousand years ago.
Situated on a prominent chalk ridge, West Kennet Long Barrow is one of the longest and most impressive Neolithic chambered tombs in Britain. The large stones at the entrance create an imposing façade, letting visitors know that this was an important site for the area’s prehistoric inhabitants. Inside, there are five chambers within the tomb, which visitors can enter to explore. From the hillside vantage point outside the tomb, there are wonderful views of nearby Silbury Hill, the Ridgeway and the surrounding Wiltshire countryside.
The History of West Kennet Long Barrow
The West Kennet Long Barrow dates back to before the famous circle of standing stones at Stonehenge!
Constructed around 3400 BC, the barrow is one of the oldest of the elements included in the Avebury and Stonehenge UNESCO World Heritage Site. The World Heritage site covers two areas of local Chalkland containing complexes of Neolithic and Bronze Age ceremonial and funerary monuments including stone circles, henges, barrows, and burial mounds. West Kennet Long Barrow is just one of many local Neolithic monuments in this part of Wiltshire.
The remains of nearly 50 people have been excavated from the tomb at West Kennet Long Barrow alongside pottery, beads and tools. However, archaeologists theorise that the monument was not just a burial place and may have been used for other ceremonial or practical purposes as well. It is estimated that constructing the barrow would have taken more than 15,000 man-hours to complete. Impressive feats of engineering would have been needed to carry the huge stones used up to the tomb’s location on the side of the hill, showing that this was a site of great importance to our prehistoric ancestors!
Today, West Kennet Long Barrow is managed by The National Trust on behalf of English Heritage.
Visiting West Kennet Long Barrow
The site of the barrow is open to visitors within daylight hours, and is free to visit. Parking is available at a nearby layby, after which you will need to walk uphill for approximately ten to fifteen minutes to reach the barrow. From the hilltop, there are lovely views over the surrounding Wiltshire countryside. Visiting West Kennet Long Barrow can be incorporated into local walks to also see Silbury Hill and Avebury.
|Ticket Type||Ticket Tariff|
|No entrance charge||Free|
Note: Prices are a guide only and may change on a daily basis.
|2020 (1 Jan 2020 - 31 Dec 2020)|
- Out of Hours Visits
Map & Directions
A 10 minute walk off the A4, 5.5 miles west of Marlborough. 1 mile south of Avebury