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Still Waters

The petrifying well turns objects into stone

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Still Waters

The city of Knaresborough in North Yorkshire, England, is home to a strange phenomenon. It hosts a petrifying well, which has the tremendous capacity to turn objects into stone. This rather curious attraction welcomes millions of visitors every year.

According to Amusing Planet, the petrifying well was first referenced in 1538 by John Leyland, antiquary to king Henry VIII. Leyland noted that the well was said by locals to have magical properties and healing powers, which he reported in his writings. This marked the beginning of legends that would surround the petrifying well for a long time.

The petrifying well is located inside a cave known as Mother Shipton’s Cave. The name of the cave comes from a local woman believed to be a witch, Ursula Southeil, whom the locals referred to as Mother Shipton.


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Have visited this site a few times while I lived in Yorkshire.  Interesting.  You used to be able to pay to have a small object hung under the dripping water to be coated in the minerals and thus 'petrified'.  Not sure if they still allow this.  Mother Shipton was said to foretell the future and described things that could have been television or cinema and the like!

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