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The village of Avebury is clustered around a medieval church and Tudor manor house. In the past it's chief income has been from sheep farming on the downland surrounding the village, but this century, particularly with the widespread use of motor transport, has seen the economy change towards serving the many tourists attracted to the area. What makes Avebury a major attraction while its neighbours are not? Well Avebury is situated within one of the most important prehistoric monuments in the world, Avebury stone circle.

The Village

Avebury has many of the typical features of rural England including:

The Pub - The Red Lion

The pub is an attractive timber-framed building with a couple of small bars. It serves the usual drinks, some passable real ales, and serves food. It also does B&B with the tag-line 'The only bed and breakfast in a Stone Circle'.

The Church

St James's is a fascinating medieval church, originally of Anglo-Saxon foundation. Of particular interest are the arcades in the nave, the arches of which clearly show the remains of earlier Norman, and Anglo-Saxon work. There is a rood loft, a feature lost to many churches in England as a result of the reformation, and two hagioscopes!

The Manor House

The Manor, owned by the National Trust, is a large stone tudor building,typical of the landed gentry in southern England. It is still used as a family home, so visiting hours and access are restricted. Its worth a look round if you've the energy left after visiting the more important monuments.

Tourist Information

There are a couple of information centres/shops in the village, with the normal mix of trinkets, informative books, and post cards.

The Alexander Keiler Museum

The small museum houses artefacts from various excavations of Avebury stone circle. It is run by English Heritage, and a small charge is levied. The custodians are helpful and knowledgable, and are only to happy to answer any questions you have about the site. The museum has recently acquired the Great Barn - a very large thatched barn of some age - and is in the process of converting it.

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