Tag Archives: white horse illumination

Alton Barnes White Horse illuminated for Salisbury Festival

2 Jul

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

It was, commented our friends from the city, like a scene from The Wicker Man: country folk in a midsummer’s torchlit procession through the middle of nowhere to the sounds of drums and horns to set a horse on fire.

Braving wind and heavy rain, around 100 spectators trudged the mile from the village of Alton Barnes to the foot of Mark Hill – the joint-highest hill in Wiltshire at 294m – where one of the county’s eight surviving landmark White Horses has galloped in chalk for 200 years.

As darkness fell we stood, shivered and prayed to the gods, old and new, for a break in the weather while the 50-metre-long horse was illuminated: first its body in swirling patterns of brilliant white lights, and then its outline in the warm glow of yellow flame. Continue reading