Ashbury, Oxfordshire, England

Wayland's Smithy

Wayland’s Smithy

Wayland’s Smithy, or Wayland Smith’s Cave as it is also known, was originally a “cromlech” (a Brythonic word in Breton/Welsh used to describe prehistoric megalithic structures, where crom means "bent" and llech means "flagstone"). Wayland's Smithy is a Neolithic long barrow and chamber tomb. The site had been built in two different phases, a timber chambered oval barrow built around 3700 BC and the second stone chambered long barrow in around 3400 BC.


Legend has it that if you left your horse here with a coin, when you returned it would have been shod by the mythical Wayland Smith or Wolund, a Germanic smith-god. The Saxons, who settled in the area some four thousand years after Wayland’s Smithy was built, seemingly applied the name to the site.


For further information, please read Haunted Britain by Antony D. Hippisley Coxe.


Visitor Information

Ashbury is a village and civil parish in Oxfordshire, England.

It is located in the Vale of White Horse. The village is about 7 miles east of Swindon in neighbouring Wiltshire.

Pictured left is Wayland's Smithy courtesy of Msemmett. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.