The Nine Ladies Stone Circle located on Stanton Moor, Derbyshire, is owned by the English Heritage. It is a Bronze age circle that consists of 9 upright stones made of local millstone grit and is less than a meter high. Just to the south is a small standing stone named ‘The Kings Stone’.
Upon looking up the history of this site, The English heritage website states that ‘It was traditionally believed to depict nine ladies turned to stone as a penalty for dancing on a Sunday’ Could this have been witches? Nobody is sure, but it is assumed it was used at the time by Druids and is still used by pagans to this day for many different ceremonies.
I have visited this location and conducted an Echovox session which replies to her question ‘We Danced’
Surrounding this location there are a few other stone circles located all within a short distance to one another and is still used by pagans today, evidence of this is on forums that can be found on the internet and evidence of celebrations around the stone such as fire pits and signs being hung up on the surrounding trees nearby. I think we will be exploring all these areas in the future. Below is a map of Stanton Moor, where these are all located.
Stanton Moor is an area of gritstone that stands at a height of 280-320 meters above sea level in Derbyshire between the villages of Stanton in Peak to the north and Birchover in the South.
This area has been occupied since the bronze age and contains the remains of two definite stone circles, these being Nine ladies and Doll Tor, there is a possible 3 other circles or ring cairns ( North, Central, and South). There is also an estimated 120 other cairns as well as several natural standing stones and rock outcrops. Quarrying within the area jas believed to have robbed us of many other circles and cairns that may have been here.
The moor has long been thought of as a sacred place for the ancient Celtic priests, the Druids and also many of the ‘menhirs’ or monoliths are believed to have sacred significance and to be associated with Druid worship.
These rocks all have names like the ‘Heart Stone’, ‘Cat Stone’, ‘Cork Stone’, ‘Andle Stone’ (also known as the Twopenny Loaf) and the magical ‘Gorse Stone’.
There are eight feast days or fire festivals celebrated at Stanton Moor:
Imbolc – Celebrates Candlemass on February 1st
Vernal Equinox – March 21st
Beltane – 1st May
Midsummer Day – 21st June – 2/3 thousand come from all over the UK to the nine ladies.
Lugnasad and Fire Feast at Lammastide – August 1st
Autumn Equinox – September 21st
Samain – Hallows eve
Solar Feast – November 1st
Midwinters Day – December 21st
This site is either thought to be a ruined embanked stone circle or a ring cairn, looking at it, it is difficult to say. It is amongst thick heather but from looking from the center it’s a clear form and walking around it reveals a bank of earth and cobbles. There are entrances to the north and south and what appears to look like a few extra ones located on the eastern side. On the south, there is an inscribed stone that bears the Heathcote’s T56 identification.
It is easy enough to find if you walk north along the main path that leads to the Nine Ladies stone circle and is located about 230 metres south of it. If you look left (west direction for a raised oval outline of heather it is about 20 meter from this area.
This site is nearly unrecognizable as a stone circle has it is heavy undergrowth and is covered by birch trees and it can be hard to find. Two entrances are recorded one to the north-northeast and the other south-south-west. There are several scattered small boulders (one which may have been used as a standing stone). What is interesting about this site is the position it is in, at this point of the moor the lands start to drop away and the site would have enjoyed many fine views of the area around and beyond.
This is quite a difficult site to find and again it isn’t known whether it is an embanked stone circle or a cairn even though English Heritage list it as a former cairn. Even when you do find it, it can be a little difficult to figure out the shape and size of the bank. There are a few stones dotted around the rim and there is a gap for an entrance to the south but along with all the others in this area has a fine view of the surrounding area.
The Cork Stone
Stanton Moor is home to many of these blocks. This is Cork Stone and pictured below is Andle Stone. Both appear very alike. Cork Stone is 15 feet high and has iron foot driven into it. It is also covered in graffiti that has been accumulated over the years.
Doll Tor is a wonderful stone circle and cairn that is hidden well in the depths of a small wood. It is a short distance from the natural rock outcrop of the Andle Stone and the circles and cairns of Stanton Moor Beyond.
The circle consists of 6 small stones and is surrounded by a central leveled platform, which for this area is unusual as it has no bank even though the stones were once connected with a low drystone wall.
The circle was first found by Thomas Bateman in 1852, he also found bucket urns and small cups. Between 1931 – 1934 the site was excavated again which revealed five cremations and more urns.
Furthur discoveries were made in the low cairn that is built on to the eastern side of the circle incorporating one of the circle’s stones. A rectangular stone pit which contained a female cremation along with a segmented faience bead, four other cremations had also been placed around the inner edge of the stone bank before it was filled in to form the cairn.
Also Nearby is
The Nine Ladies Close Circle – Also known as the Grey Ladies – Bakewell
Sadly only 4 stones now remain of this stone circle. These are the largest stones in Derbyshire, they stand isolated in a farmers field on Harthill Moor, which is almost west of Doll Tor.
Thomas Bateman recorded seven upright stones at the site as well as sherds and flints. Further excavations happened in 1877 which may have also disturbed the stones and what remains today is a rectangular setting of 4 stones. The tallest is 2 meters high and would have formed a circle of about 13 meters in diameter if there were 9 stones, ‘nine’ could be a corruption of ‘noon’.
It appears that at least one of the stones as survived, and now stands as part of a drystone wall to the south of the circle. A short distance south is the rock outcrop of Robin Hood’s Stride which could have been served as a sacred hill alter. From the center of the circle, the major southern moon is seen to set between two stone pillars on the top of the hill.
The circle is also known as and is often referred to as ‘The Grey Ladies’. This is based on a local tradition that the stones are transformed into dancing women at midnight. Others believe the transformation occurred when some unfortunate ladies were transformed into the stones.
It is also said to be the place where fairies sometimes meet and local folklore relates how fairy music has been heard and hundreds of mystical shapes have been spotted dancing around the stones.
A tale from the 19th century even tells of a farm laborer who found a clay pipe at the stones and when smoked it was able to peer through the surface of the earth near one of the stones and see a subterranean land inhabited by fairy folk.
Arbor Low And Gib Hill Barrow
Bakewell – DE45 1JS
Arbor Low is the finest Stone Age ‘henge’ monument in the North of England. The site is situated on a high point of 375 meters above sea level and though it doesn’t look a high hill when you reach the top the view on a fine day is amazing
It is unknown to why this circle is here or what exactly it was used for as well as its sister circle at Dove Holes ( The Bull Ring) but what is known is that they have been focal points for the people of the time. It is believed it was constructed about 2500 BC and has a deep enclosing a circular central ‘sanctuary’ area. There are entrances at the North- West and South- East of the bank.
The Central area contains 46 large and 13 smaller stones arranged in a circle with a group in its center. The stones are currently laying flat but it is unknown to whether they were once standing.
One theory is that early Christians laid them flat in order to desanctify’ the site. It is also believed that initially they could have been wooden posts and later changed to stone.
A Bronze Age tumulus had been added at a later date just within the bank and is 200 meters away to the south-west, It was built on top of a stone age long barrow which could have been older then the circle, this later feature was found to contain several burials.
There have been ghost sightings around the circle and that is of a boggart, locals believe that whoever spends time here after dark may risk upsetting this entity.
There have also been many UFO sightings around the circle and it is believed that from above arbor low could resemble some kind of clock and is believed to be on a ley line which some may say why there have been so many UFO sightings.
Charlene has investigated Arbor Low at night and did encounter some interesting activity within the circle from equipment.
Ley-line – UFO and Stanton Moor
Philip Williams – Investigator for Red Ridge Paranormal:
A ley-line is a straight fault line in the earth’s tectonic plates; this is a scientific fact. What science though refuses to believe that through these, cracks in the earth’s tectonic plates that the magnetic energy released are very powerful.
but still, ley lines still don’t have any conclusive evidence to prove that these lines give out spiritual energy.
Ley lines are mainly found by individuals that use dowsing instruments. I have read up on some experiences of energy surges that flow up there body and that the power surge knocked them unconscious.
Many races and cultures on the planet have known about these lines yet everyone had different names for these lines. look at some of the ancient cultures of the earth.
The native Indians, they used to call lay lines spirit lines and their Shaman’s used to use the magnetic energy in these lines to help them contact the spirits.
They even designed their medicine wheel on the spirit lines, as they knew that these lines followed a straight round line. How did they know about these lines and the energies that they give off? The answer’s simple: the sky Gods told them. Also, take aborigines Australians called these lines dream lines (songlines mainly referred too). Many different people from around the world have said this information was given to them by sky gods. I am not saying that this is true maybe it’s just coincidence that groups from around the world shared the same knowledge.
What I started me writing this article was the nine ladies at Stanton Moor. There has been a rise of reports around the area mainly around Stanton moor was the stone circles are. one account that I found interesting was a couple Linda and her husband in 1990s took a trip from USA to Stanton moor nine ladies. when they arrived to site there was at the center of the stone circle. Linda came across a round piece of glass that they referred to as a monocle. In the center of the glass was a green triangle that was 1/3 inch in diameter. they pocketed the object and took their walk back to the car, the time was 3:45 pm. At this point there thought that the time was wrong because that would mean they spent seven hours at the site when the total time would have been two hours.
But other there have been many other reports of abductions, strange objects that fly across the sky at an unbelievable rate to cults practicing their magic. Now reports of these unexplained lights, sights, and saucers have been released by the Ministry of Defence – a total of 25 files, containing 4,400 pages Defiantly a place of interest if you are into ufo spotting.
The latest The latest UFO files can be viewed at http://www.national archives.gov.uk/ufos