Prior to the end
of the last Ice Age, some 10,000 years ago. when
the sea level was so much lower, the Isles
of Scilly were one large island. This
island formerly called 'Ennor'
would have been settled from nearby Cornwall with
the early inhabitants bringing their culture and
beliefs with them. Written accounts by the Romans
also indicate that they visited the single island
of Sullia and other historical data
suggest that the main islands did not become
separated until as late as 400 or 500 AD. The
ancient sites would then obviously all be easily
accessible for worship, burial or solstice ritual.
The main sites are listed below with further
information available in the
excellent guide book
The Modern Antiquarian by
Grid Ref. SV922127 -
Actually two chambered tombs on Helvear Down
on the Northeast coast of St. Mary's overlooking Crow
Sound, the channel to St. Martin's and
the Eastern Isles. The Lower
Innisidgen tomb leaves a lot to the
imagination in its poor state of repair but the Upper
Innisidgen tomb was restored by
in the 1970's and now offers an excellent
example of an Early Bronze Age Chamber Tomb.
The visitor should also try to visit
and the Iron Age village on
about 30 minutes walk away to the west.
OS Explorer 101
Grid Ref. SV910123
- This excellently preserved Late Stone Age
or Early Bronze Age Chamber Tomb dates from
about 2500 to 4500 BC and lies on Halangy Down
at the Northwestern end of St. Mary's. It overlooks Toll's
Porth and the channel to Tresco
and Samson. In the stewardship of
Halangy Down Village
Grid Ref. SV911126 - This
Iron Age settlement dates from about 200BC and
consists of one large courtyard house and several round
houses. It lies on the sloping hillside directly below
the far older Bant's Carn on Halangy
Down on the Northwest coast of St. Mary's.
The Giant's Tomb (Porth
OS Explorer 101
Grid Ref. SV929108
- This excellently preserved Early
Bronze Age Chamber Tomb lies on
Porth Hellick Down on the eastern side of St.
Mary's. There are several other smaller and far
less obvious tombs here making this what would
have been quite an important site on the ancient
isle of Ennor.