Stonehenge builders ate Scottish meat and were lactose intolerant

Stonehenge builders ate Scottish meat and were lactose intolerant

Published by The Spire FM News Team at 5:48am 20th October 2017.

3 minute read

New research has been looking into what our ancestors ate to give them the energy for creating the stone circle.

Ever wondered what fuelled the ancient men who built Stonehenge? Scottish meat and no milk, apparently!

A new exhibition opens at the English Heritage visitor centre today (Friday October 20th) taking a closer look at the diets of our ancestors working on that massive project 4,500 thousand years ago.

Researchers have found out that they were lactose intolerant, but did turn milk into cheese and yoghurt to get their calcium.

They've also discovered that the pigs and cows eaten at the neolithic settlement at Durrington Walls would have been brought down from northern Scotland.

Experts think that might mean that building the monument might have been a nationwide effort.

Stonehenge Feast 2 (credit English Heritage Clare Kendall)

Skulls on display at the new Feast! exhibition are of the now extinct aurochs, a species of cattle, that would have been eaten on site


The neolithic settlers didn't drink milk, but were into their cheese it would seem - English Heritage has put together a blog about what they did:

The exhibition also feautres bronze cauldrons from 700BC and decorated Groove Ware pots that were excavated from the Durrington Walls and would have been used to make the feasts back then.

Susan Greaney, English Heritage historian, said:

"Our exhibition explores the important role feasts and food played at Stonehenge. Raising the ancient stones was an incredible feat but so too was feeding the army of builders - our exhibition reveals just how this was done."

English Heritage has worked with the Universities of York, Cardiff and Sheffield, as well as University College London.

The exhibition runs until September 2018, and admission is part of the normal Stonehenge admission price.

Stonehenge Feast 3 (credit English Heritage Clare Kendall)


A special live webcast is being broadcast this afternoon at 5.30pm where expert Chris Hobbs from History Bombs will talk viewers through what's been learned from the exhibition.

He'll also be able to answer any of our questions - you can watch that on their YouTube channel here:

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