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Westbury White Horse

A conventional looking horse it measures 107 feet tall and 175 feet across. The horse sits below Bratton Hill Iron Age fort. The hillfort has a Bronze Age barrow within its fortifications suggesting an earlier heritage.

The present design was completed in 1778 when it was re-cut from an older version by the Steward of Lord Abingdon, a man called Gee. Apparently the older design was more stylised with a crescent moon on the end of its long thin tail. The original horse was also facing the other direction.

According to local legend King Alfred cut the horse to celebrate the defeat of the Danes at the battle of Ethandus in AD 878. There is no way of verifying this legend and there is a possibility the original was older perhaps relating to the Iron Age hillfort.

The site can be reached from a minor road from the B3098.

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Daniel Parkinson

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