Stonehenge’s little sister unearthed

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a second stone circle just a mile from Stonehenge, and dating back to the same period.

Dubbed ‘Bluehenge’ after the colour of the 27 Welsh stones of which it was once made up, it was uncovered over the summer near Amesbury in Wiltshire. It lies at the end of the ‘avenue’ – a pathway connecting Stonehenge to the River Avon.

Unearthed by researchers at the University of Sheffield, the site is believed to date back 5,000 years, to around the same time as work began on Stonehenge. All that remains now is a series of holes showing where the six-foot stones were set, along with some small chips of blue stone.

The four-ton stones used were mined 200 miles away in the Preseli Mountains in Wales, and seem to have been laid out as a smaller version of Stonehenge. Researchers believe its stones were later used to enlarge Stonehenge.

The stones appear to have been polished to a dark blue, with silver flecks that may have looked like the night sky. They form a circle about 60 feet across on a ramped mound.

Stonehenge itself was built in three main phases over a 600-year period.