West Kennet Long Barrow: Decoded and Orbed

If you stand a bit further back when you read this post, say about ten feet away, then the scanned-in pictures in this post take on a whole new perspective. It wasn’t intentional, but when I spotted it I thought I’d leave it like that. Might get you into an unusual conversationĀ with those around you. Don’t worry if you don’t see what I mean – it just means you’re pure of thought šŸ˜‰

Here’s another topic for your unusual conversation: the function and purpose of an ancient site, specifically West Kennet Long Barrow. Ā It’s purpose and function may be totally unique to me – I don’t knowĀ – so if you have any dowsing or druidry knowledge then perhaps you could verify how much of the following information holds true for you?

Before I decode the purpose, however, let me say a few words about the majestic oak tree at the edge of the ploughed crop field upon which the Long Barrow stands.

West Kennett Long Barrow (5)

This well-balanced oak was awash with dangling trinkets – ribbons, hair bands, bells, even a loveheart perched in the heart of the tree’s canopy. This tree was well adorned. I made a mental note to look for something suitable to add later. Atop the next hill was a curiously geometric sloping mound that was drawing me up the path between the close-cropped fields.

As I approached the top of the hill the entrance to the barrow took me by surprise. Its entrance stones were massive – like huge lower teeth clamping the mound to the land in a pit-bull jaw lock.

West Kennett Long Barrow (8)

I deposited my bag just outside the nemeton energy field of the mound, which for some reason I could visually and energetically distinguish without needing the rods to know it was there, however I still checked. Not quite that confident yet, but getting there. If I was to cross this barrier then I should do so with a little awareness and a bit of an introduction. I got the rods out and asked to locate the entrance to the site. It was a short way back down the approach path, at a fork in the ways where another path crossed. The width of the energy gateway was a few inches wider than the chalk path that streaked across the mouth of the mound.

I asked to go to the ‘most energetic and suitable place for me to sit’. That usually produced good results, and I was led up a small path that snaked up the right front face of the mound, winding past two concrete slabs, to circle around in a spiral just beyond them, before the narrow paths down each side joined. It was slightly warmer on that spot than elsewhere, so I took the chance to sit down and admire the view around from this vantage point. I could see the remains of a crop circle, the greener shoots still swirled in circular counterpoint patterns.

West Kennett Long Barrow (6)

I appreciated the silence as the wind brushed the grass atop this long and wide burial site. I felt like there must have been many a shaman, warrior or nobleman who wished to be buried here, in sight of Silbury Hill, in a mound composed of his or her ancestors. Yet I felt there was much more that was still alive and always had been within this earthen sculpture. This place felt like it still had purpose, and I felt like this was a good day to try to find that purpose out.

I picked up the rods again and asked to be shown the way into the mound. By now there were other tourists milling about, some more intrepid than others, some merely passing through on their way across this unusual landscape. Before I got lost in wondering about their reasons for visiting I dowsed my way down the other side of the mounds steep front slope. A young couple looked on at my activities like they were witnessing their grandmother lead away her imaginary friend. But I was in a zone outside of that space and time, and the rods moved lithely in my hands, tracing a curving flow through the stones that formed a neat mini labyrinth at the entrance. It was only up close that you realised there WAS an entrance. From further away it looked invisible.

West Kennett Long Barrow (13)

I stopped in the sun-trap of a tiny courtyard that formed outside the entrance to the inner sanctum. Glancing up I could see some cup marks and holes int eh very tall middle entrance stone. It almost looked like a face, which made me giggle. HIS house, obviously. I asked quietly for permission to enter and felt no resistance, and so ducked inside into the darkness.


Inside the chamber

There were four neatly sectioned off chambers, two on each side. The entrance to each were curiously individual though. The fifth and largest chamber was facing me twenty feet away at the end of the inner chamber. Soft daylight permeated two glass bricks in the concrete slabs above providing an ambient light which one’s eyes quickly adjusted to. No torch required today. In amongst the other people dipping in and out, admiring the acoustics or the snugness of the four smaller chambers, I found a place for my bag near the entrance and began to dowse. Question after question emerged, and each time I worked rapidly towards finding the purpose of each of the five chambers. I first found the order in which they should be visited (marked as numbers aside each chamber on the diagram below).

Then I drew from everything I had read, and all my experiences of effects within other sacred sites like Bryn Celli Ddu, and I pieced together a sense of the purpose and method of each chamber, finally arriving at a complete vision of how a person could undergo a spiritual transformation by passing through each chamber in turn. Please consider that these steps may be for me alone, yet I felt they had a more general significance, so you might be able to confirm whether that is what you find there too.

This is how I noted the function of the various areas, and the approximate time in minutes that one should remain in there to make the function work for you:

1. For cleansing energies – like stone circle grounding stone – 7 minutes
2. For knowing and stating one’s purpose – having clear intention – 1 minute
3. For contacting the guardian spirit of the place, and for obtaining permission to undergo the transformation – 7 minutes
4. For charging up energies in readiness for the rebirth process or revelation – 1 minute
5. For transformation. A rebirth chamber, possibly using sound to achieve transformation through acoustic resonance – 1 minute

That last bit’s totally made up, but it was just a sense I got from feeling the reverberation from the walls to any sound. Even the thumping of people walking overhead was percussive and primal in that final domed chamber. The whole process could be done in less than twenty minutes if everything went according to plan. Was this too wacky, unfounded, plain made up? Only one way to find out – I’d better have a go!

Behold the orbs

Before I come to that, a word about ORBS. Ā When I was taking pictures of each of the chambers, for some reason I couldn’t fathom I took two pictures of chamber number four – the energy charging chamber. It had a feather and a small rock at the back of it, which interested me. Seemed like someone had placed a totem object there. Anyway – I took two photos of that – one right after the other, seconds apart. Not realising anything was on there I showed them to M and she pointed out the strange white blob on the second picture. Oh yeah! Then when I loaded up the pictures onto the computer I could see one in the fifth chamber picture too. Again, I had taken two photos of that chamber – one with a flash and one without. Both the pictures that showed an orb had used a flash. Well, there you go then – it was a reflection of a dust particle, that’s all. Well, maybe. The first orb appeared right on top of the totem feather. The second orb in the fifth chamber was hovering over the power centre that I dowsed in there. Slap bang on it – not one inch to the left or right, up or down, just on it. An interesting coincidence, a peculiar trick of the light. These are not the first pictures that Kal and I have taken that include such balls of light. It’s all very interesting given that balls of light are associated with the formation of crop circles. I also noticed that chambers four and five were the two chambers I didn’t feel ready to use yet, until I knew the right things to do in there, and these were the ones in which I photographed an anomalous ball of light.

Here’s the orb in the fourth chamber: notice the feather next to a pale stone at the back of the chamber in the first photo, and how an orb appears above the feather in the second picture. No other strange light phenomenon is evident. No other particles of dust.

West Kennett Orbs

The pictures were taken seconds apart, and with the same lighting conditions and camera settings. In the fifth chamber I would capture something similar, again without me realising until I got home that anything else was in the picture in the centre at the bottom of the frame. The glinting ‘eyes’ are pairs of tea light candles decoratively arranged to make an amusing and potentially startling statement:

West Kennett Long Barrow (26)

Some theories have emerged regarding this phenomenon, the most plausible explanation of which is that the flash is picking up specks of dust and reflecting them back into the overall picture, making them seem larger than they are. Very plausible explanation. What I want you to consider, though, is two things. Firstly – why is there only one speck of dust being picked up? Secondly, why do theseĀ orbs happen to appear exactly where the centre of the spiralling energy was dowsed? I don’t know what they are, but they keep appearing. Time for a new camera?

Let’s ‘Ave A Go

I retreated to my power centre on top of the mound to mull over my re-discovery. If this sequence was real, and the chambers did what I thought they might, then there was only one way I could prove that – by experience. I would have to go through the process. I had a spare twenty minutes. I wasn’t afraid to die! I wanted to double check first. Had I got the right path for me today to go through the chambers? I dowsed my trail: chamber 1, then 2, then as I entered the third chamber I started an inward spiral into the power centre in the middle. NO! What was this? Stuck at the third chamber? Not enough energy? Wrong day or time? No – something to do with the purpose of the third chamber….I knew I wouldn’t be able to tune into the spirit of the place at this time. It was either the wrong time, or I wasn’t ready. Either way, it wasn’t going to happen today.

Disappointed, but still elated at my findings, I packed to go. I said my farewells and vowed to return when I was ready for the experience. On the way out I couldn’t help but glance up to see the laughing face of the tall stone guardian that mocked with a wide grin. Well, one day soon I’d learn that lesson and would be back to undergo the transformation process. Then I would know whether I was in any way right about how this site worked. I chose my paths carefully as I left, leaving no trace of having been there, except a marker saying “I’ll be back“.

West Kennett Long Barrow (37)

As I strode down the hill between the ploughed and cut fields I enjoyed the sight and fragrance of the wayside wild flowers. Seeing one plant’s tendrils wrapped around another I excused myself, explained myself, and plucked them. These two would form a perfect parting gift to the old oak tree to show my gratitude. I wove a cross-shaped dolly from the flowers and tied it to the tree. This action seemed to rouse the cattle int he field and they began to hasten towards me, following me through the nearby open gateway into the next field. I remembered an old wives saying about cows and rain, and checked the sky – sure enought eh clouds were forming not many miles away. Briefly chatting to a nice Polish man about ancient civilisations, I made my way back to SIlbury Hill and then headed off home in the trusty Peugeot. For some reason I had called it a day at that!


Finding a level.


  1. holly
    Nov 7, 2016

    Thanks so much for this post! I first visited WKLB in August of this year, just before starting my Ridgeway walk. I instantly sensed there was something special about this site, even though I didn’t understand why. I went back the following morning for a second visit before starting on the Ridgeway.

    After I returned, I did some research on the site and discovered this blog post. I printed out the map of the chambers and their meetings so I could take it along with me on a future visit to WKLB. Last weekend, I revisited the site twice in one day. On the first visit, I went through each of the chambers with your guide in mind. I didn’t set a timer for the amount of time spent in each chamber, but I sat in each one with the intention of following your guide.

    I loved the experience. On my first visit, over the summer, I had gone into chambers 1, 3, and 5 but had avoided 2 and 4. This time, I went through them all and really enjoyed the experience.

    On my second visit this weekend, in the late afternoon, I spent most of my time in the large chamber at the end. As I emerged, just after sunset, as the sky was getting dark, a mist came up over the landscape, and made the setting even more magical.

    Thanks again for this post on WKLB. I know I’ll visit again, and I look forward to it. Your post made my second trip even more special because I had additional information and guidelines regarding the site.

    • Chris
      Nov 15, 2016

      Hi Holly,

      Thank you so much for your comment. I’m really pleased when people find the information useful, and even better when it sets them off on their own adventures into this mysterious and inspirational “other” world which is all around us all the time.

      It’s been a while since I went to WKLB myself. Every time is special, and I’m planning a group visit next Summer, but I think your enthusiasm has struck a chord with me and I won’t be able to wait that long until I go there again. Who knows what I’ll find this time?

  2. ken
    Feb 26, 2012

    On the day I woke with the spur of the moment thought to visit Avebury and at the same time to pay respects to the whole complex, I did not know that the feeling that vibrated through me was to end up with what I actually did.

    I donā€™t think it was coincidence that I woke that morning with an aching desire to go to Avebury, or that the people I met in the West Kennet Barrow had chosen that mid week day to complete their ancient Shamanic journeying. I never had plans to take lots of photos and build a musical montage to show the world neither. But it all seemed correct and done in a vibratory dreamlike state.

    The whole complex that day showed itself to me and demanded that I photographed them.. them being the spirits! in the Stones and the landscape. The Oneness of the landscape the complex and the Universe unravelled itself for a rare display and it is only now that I recognise what I had been chosen to do.


    I added in about 6 photos from a previous Avebury visit, again, I don’t know why.. but that is the way it goes when you are connected. Love and Peace to all

    • Gwas
      Feb 29, 2012

      Hi Ken,

      Heady stuff indeed! Sent me right off into a trance.The team really have a good understanding of the way to use music to affect the brainwaves. Loved it. Will have another listen when I need to relax like that again. It reminded me, in terms of its ambition, of the wonderful relaxation/guided ritual tracks that Philip Carr-Gomm did with Damh The Bard last year. Those were wonderful sonic experiences that had a similar effect.

      See: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/philipcarrgomm2

      Thanks for the compilation of pictures. I almost feel that I don’t need to go back there this year – I feel like I’ve had a guided tour already!


  3. Lila
    Feb 25, 2012

    Hi Gwas,

    I was at WKLB today, I didn’t know anything about the chambers, just found your blog today searching Internet because of my experience inside WKLB today wanting to know more.

    I do not do dowsing (yet!), I just get direct perception, sometimes words/impressions, colours, lights, etc. It was quite charged there today, alive and with lots of internal movement. It’s like since last year a switch was turned and it’s charged up to the brim.

    This is what came up:

    Chamber 3: forbidding, resident Guardian, must obtain permission, do not enter without ritual offering/permission, only when ready (didn’t feel like I could go in today)
    Chamber 4: to sit and meditate to charge with energy, silence to sound
    Chamber 1: occupied – busy, many already there, ..it felt too crowded there for me so I didn’t go in.
    Chamber 2: guides/ancestors/shamans; charged with energy of knowingness, obtain knowledge.. I saw red light – oblong shape in the middle of the chamber; felt nice warm gentle movement of energy, like warm water swirling/dancing gently around
    Chamber 5: New beginnnings, transformation, Mother Earth rebirthing nourishing, direct earthy energy rising from beneath upwards towards the sky.

    I’m quite surprised about some of the similarities, it’s rather cool. Thank you for sharing your experience and results of your investigations!


    • Gwas
      Feb 29, 2012

      Hi Lila,

      Thanks for your comment. I found it really interesting to go over your impressions and compare them to my own. At the time I was trying to find a universal truth about the function of the chambers. Nowadays I realise that may have been folly, and that the chambers may react to different people in different ways depending upon your need/state of mind/abilities. I also suspect that the “traffic” in the chambers changes over the year, and depending upon human and otherwordly activity.

      I’m also pleasantly surprised by the similarities between our impressions. I think if more people add to the picture of how the chambers feel to them, then we could begin to formulate some concepts as to how they work, and how they affect people.

      It all adds to the jigsaw of impressions and drawn-down data.


      • Lila
        Feb 29, 2012

        Hi Gwas,

        Yes it’s the dilemma of the subjective-objective with the distortion of dualism thrown in to spice things up a bit for the wisdom seeker šŸ™‚ You are absolutely right that the information we get in those places is dependent on the interaction with our consciousness, the state of our mind, our energies at the time, etc, so they change. Mind you due to a particular ‘charge’ or kind of baseline energy matrix of the place there are bound to be similarities in perceptions and findings.

        I’m glad you’ve said that about the places changing, because the changes are so palpable especially now. A few years ago it seems that sometime one had to work much harder to tune in and go much deeper, it taking a tad longer to get to the information there (although it is also about personal development of skills), but now it’s so alive and charged that you just seem to get there and the information/impressions are assailing you, so to speak. I find the same with other sites. E.g. the Rollright Stones recently. It’s like someone has turned on the switch full power and whoosh there it is – a wealth of information, teachings and guidance coming through in a great torrent now. You are right thought again that there is the influence of more recent activity at the site/s it being used for spiritual purposes more and more, so that is akin to a key being turned and the door opening. Yeah, with the activity from both sides of the door, no wonder! It’s rather exciting and beautiful. And it is always great to compare notes with others about this, so thank you Gwas! Oh, and thanks for keeping up your website and blog, it’s a pleasure to read, very interesting and illuminating!

        All the best,


  4. ken
    Dec 18, 2011

    I was on holiday this past week, and on the spur of the moment I felt I ought to go and pay a visit to the Avebury Stones, I also decided to visit the West Kennet Long Barrow and try out my new ‘telescopic’ dowsing rods.

    Upon my arrival I discovered a couple (Dee & Steve)inside just starting some Shamanic Journying, which made me reluctent to impringe on their sacred moment, but both were terribly friendly and granted me permission to ‘poke’ about, and ‘Dee’ even smudged my Aura.

    When I ran my rods over the two ‘cubicles’ or chambers as you enter the entrance, with appropiate questions I deciphered some answers which are remarkable in comparision to Gwas.

    In Chamber 3, My Rods informed me that Spirits resided, and they were not friendly (Guardians, who needed to be treated with respect and asked for permission) Chamber 1 I was informed, had 7 burials during it’s time of use.

    Of course I shall return and be more respectful, I also hope to elicite more infomation about the site, and appreciate Gwas’s comments that these are my personal ‘deciphering’ of the questions.

    • Gwas
      Dec 18, 2011

      Hi Ken,

      Always nice to get some learned and compatible feedback. Can’t wait to get back to that fantastic site myself and see whether I still get the same results as the first time I tried to interpret the place. Hope you can make your own use of the results you obtain. Please keep us informed of your findings, compatible or contrary – it all adds to the picture.


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