Penrith, Cumbria CA10 2BX
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King Arthur’s Round Table
King Arthur’s Round Table is a henge situated in the village of Eamont Bridge, south of Penrith.
There were originally two entrances to the central area – one on the south-east, which still exists, and another to the north-west; the latter was destroyed, along with part of the bank and ditch, when the road was constructed.
The site was excavated in 1937 when evidence for two standing stones at one entrance was found; these are also shown on a seventeenth-century plan.
The exact purpose of the monument remains unknown: it may have been the meeting place for a large prehistoric community, perhaps for trading though possibly also for ritual or ceremonial use.
During the excavations, a long, shallow trench – perhaps where the dead were cremated – was discovered near the centre of the circular platform.
The site may have acquired its name in the seventeenth century or even earlier, due to its circular form, a revival of interest in Arthurian legends – it was thought to be a location for jousting – or the traditional associations of King Arthur with the North West.
The site is free to visitors and is under the control of English Heritage.