The Long Man of Wilmington is depicted in outline holding two poles. He is 230' high and 235' wide. The location of Windover hill is ideal, the angle of this slope is about 40 degrees. The figure is looked after by East Sussex CC for Sussex Archaeological Society. The figure is in quite good condition although a few of the concrete blocks have become dislodged, the fixings only being about 1" deep.
The late history of the giant is reasonably well known, however the origins are not. The first reference was a drawing made in 1710, although not particularly accurate in its depiction it indicates its antiquity. OSL dating has been carried out by the University of Reading giving a date of construction around 1545.
The chalk outline was replaced by yellow bricks in 1874 and these replaced by concrete blocks in 1969 although not in exactly the same outline. There is also some controversy as to the direction the feet point. They supposedly pointed downward and now point left probably changed during one of the many restorations. The giant was last worked on in 1993, the site is grazed and thus requires little maintenance. The giant has been surveyed (using soil resistivity measurements) and it is believed that one of the poles was a scythe and the other a rake, the giant also wore a head plume. A legend also suggested that a **** the the mans right existed, although these findings are unproven.
The origins are completely unknown although there is much speculation, based on legends and the archaeologically of the area. The figure is Roman say some authorities, bronze age others, the figure depicts an associate of King Harold so the figure dates from the 11th century. Another theory is that it depicts a monk who founded the nearby priory in the early 15th century. There are many more in fact too many to go into here, suffice to say that the truth may never be known.
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Landscape and travel
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