Afton Down

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Afton Down
Afton Down.JPG
Afton Down viewed from Tennyson Down.
Location Isle of Wight, England
Topo map OS Landranger 196

Afton Down is a hill near the village of Freshwater on the Isle of Wight.[1]

It was the site of the Isle of Wight Festival 1970, where the Guinness Book of Records estimates 600,000 to 700,000, and possibly 800,000 people, flocked to see the musical talents of Emerson, Lake & Palmer, Free, The Who, The Doors, Ten Years After and Jimi Hendrix.[2]

There is an obelisk on Afton Down near the cliff edge. It is inscribed with a sad story; "E.L.M. Aged 15 He cometh forth like a flower and is cut down. He fleeth also as a shadow and continueth not. Erected in remembrance of a most dear and only child who was suddenly removed into eternity by a fall from the adjacent cliff on the rocks below. 28th August 1846. Reader prepare to meet thy God, for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth."

View of Afton Down looking towards Freshwater Bay

A local writer[who?] notes that it was common for people to climb the cliffs of the area to pick samphire, a plant used to make pickles.[3]

Freshwater Bay Golf Course is located on Afton Down.[4]

On the downs are a group of 24 barrows comprising, a long barrow 34.7m long, 0.9m high and oriented east-west, 17 bowl barrows, 4 bell barrows and 2 disc barrows (One of which is where the golf course is located). One barrow has been the subject of archaeological interest, and is thought to be from the Bronze Age.[5][6] The site was excavated in 1817 revealing nothing of significance in the long barrow, but several cremations in the round barrows.[1]


  1. ^ a b "Roman Britain - Afton Down". Retrieved 2009-04-12. [dead link]
  2. ^ "Isle of Wight Festival History - 1970". Archived from the original on 11 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-11. 
  3. ^ "Freshwater in the 17th Century". Retrieved 2009-04-12. 
  4. ^ "Isle of Wight golf at Freshwater Bay Golf Club". Archived from the original on 21 March 2009. Retrieved 2009-04-04. 
  5. ^ "Oxford Archaeology: Exploring the Human Journey". Archived from the original on 5 July 2007. Retrieved 2007-07-11. 
  6. ^ "Neolithic to Early Bronze Age Resource Assessment: The Isle of Wight" (PDF). Retrieved 2007-07-11. 

Coordinates: 50°40′08″N 1°30′18″W / 50.669°N 1.505°W / 50.669; -1.505