Uffington White Horse

JUST across Wiltshire's border, in Oxfordshire, lies the oldest horse of them all. The Uffington white horse is the original chalk equine that inspired a whole series throughout Wiltshire.

The Wiltshire Gazette and Herald: Static HTML image Now looked after by the National Trust, the horse is thought to be over 3000 years old, dating from between 1200BC and 800 BC. From the top is a magnificent view of the surrounding chalk downs and gently curving hills.

It is situated close to The Ridgeway, Wayland Smithy burial tomb and Uffington Castle, an old hill fort whose remains can still be seen. It is possible that the horse was created by the inhabitants of the castle.

Another theory is that the figure represents a horse goddess and was created by a cult who worshipped her. Placed on a shallow gradient near the top of a hill (as shown above), the horse is not easily seen from ground level.

One of the best vantage points for viewing the horse is the top of Dragon Hill, a natural hill flattened by man. Dragon Hill is said to be the very spot where St George slayed the dragon, and a bald patch of grass which exists today is said to be where the dragon's blood fell.

However, one of the best ways to view the figure is by hang-gliding over the top of it.



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