Royston Cave, Hertfordshire: A mysterious site full of sacred energy

Our Secret Britain series continues with a Hertfordshire cave whose true nature remains unknown.

Shrine, prison cell, Knights Templar meeting place, Augustinian monks’ wine cellar, burial site or Neolithic flint mine? Nobody knows, but fascination prevails.

Royston Cave was discovered in 1742, cut into the chalk bedrock beneath crossroads in the centre of town. Shaped like a beehive, 16ft wide and 26ft tall, its walls are covered in crude carvings dated to the mid 1300s of Christian saints, animals and pagan earth goddess Sheela-na-gig.

Holes beneath the figures show they were once illuminated by candles and, whoever might have visited this subterranean oddity, most believe it has held a sacred energy for thousands of years.

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