Sunrise over Glastonbury Tor; 23 Nov 2012.

As I’ve most probably made clear by now, the Somerset Levels are just that – level.  The areas that I frequent have hills on the horizon –  the Mendips to the north, the Poldens to the south – but essentially they are flatlands.  And usually damp or downright wet flatlands at that.

But, that said, there are isolated small hills in this area which were islands when these flats were marshlands and open water.  And at the eastern end of the Levels that I visit most frequently, there is one hill that is truly iconic, Glastonbury Tor.

Why iconic?  Well, it is a real landmark, visible from far around, and the ruined church tower on its summit, seen here, makes it instantly recognisable, even from far away.   And it has a vast and intriguing history, certainly going far back into the Anglo-Saxon era.  At the time that King Henry VIII destroyed the Catholic monasteries and founded the Church of England, the monastery at Glastonbury was second in terms of power and prestige only to the church’s spiritual centre, Canterbury.

And, in addition to all of this solid history, Glastonbury has a vast swathe of associated myths and legends – as the last resting place of the little known King Arthur, for example.  And then the supposed associations with Joseph of Aramathea and the Holy Grail.  And there is of course its current status as a centre for spirituality and New Age beliefs and, as the site (not far from the town) of Britain’s most famous music festival.

I feel truly grateful to live not distant from this enigmatic and fascinating place.

D700 with 70-300 Nikkor at 300mm; 400 ISO.

About Adrian Lewis
Photographer working in monochrome, colour and combinations of the two - with a great liking for all sorts of images, including Minimalism, landscapes, abstracts, soft colour, people, movement, nature - I like to be adventurous in my photography, trying new ideas and working in many genres. And I'm fond of Full English Breakfasts and Duvel golden ale, though not necessarily together.


  1. juliecrombe says:

    Amazing shot! Those colors are breathtaking!


    • Adrian Lewis says:

      Thank you! I count myself lucky to be living near the beautiful county of Somerset – I guess you could call it my spiritual homeland really – its where I grew up. And Glastonbury is such an enigmatic and spiritual place.

      This image also shows my love for visual simplicity – for Minimalism. There is really very little in the frame – the birds, the hilltop and those sunlit clouds – the rest is really shades of grey. And the sunrise colours are not garish – and they are the better for that I think. A


  2. Liana says:

    there you are in Avalon! how magical indeed 🙂


  3. Meanderer says:

    Love the composition here. The birds give it even more of a magical feeling – as if one was necessary 😉


  4. icastel says:

    Great shot. I like the serene atmosphere and the tones. Your write-up has left me wanting to read more about this place. Google, here I come 😀


    • Adrian Lewis says:

      Thanks very much, Igor, I’m pleased you like it! Yes, read up about Glastonbury – and if you get over to this side of the world, go there!!! Its a small town and like nowhere else – if you are at all into history, spirituality or the New Age, its a must for you! Adrian 🙂


  5. Lovely image which has brought back equally lovely memories! I’ve climbed it many times – I used to love the way low sunlight would pick out all the drainage channels in the surrounding area (I can’t remember the correct name for them) 🙂


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