Dating back from 1620, this is an authentic, rustic bar with low ceilings, exposed beams and rough concrete walls. On a Roman road and steeped in tradition, the Hanging Gate was called by several names, including The Bannered Gate, The Battle Gate, or The Stone Bar. It is thought to have been built by one of King John’s sons, later named Richard, and built during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. Legend has it that the baron of Wallingford, known as The Silent Man, delivered supplies to the soldiers of the English army in a cross-channel route. Legend states that he slipped on some poison and died of exposure. Others say he committed suicide by hanging.
Why you need The Hanging Gate
Today, The Hanging Gate, or also known as the Battle Gateway, is still used as a general store, with window shopping, and a stage for stage shows. It houses several small bars and restaurants, as well as pubs, and several restaurants have taken up residence inside, serving food such as fish and chips and cheese curds. The entrance way to the Hanging Gate has not changed over the years and does not resemble anything we would call modern in comparison to other entrances to Stonehenge. In fact, many believe that this gate was designed during the prehistoric age, possibly as a means of offering protection to travellers from the deadly rays of the sun.
Those who live near the Hanging Gate are often advised to put up security measures when they leave their homes, perhaps with iron bars on either side of the entrance. Those who visit, however, may feel more at home because the atmosphere is tranquil, and tends to draw people in. Over time, as history continues to unfold, the Hanging Gate may become even more popular, as more visitors discover its mysterious past.