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Wayland the Smith
Saxon God settles in Berkshire
  • Wayland the Smith, Anglo-Saxon God of Metalworking -  Nash Ford PublishingWayland was the Anglo-Saxon god of metalworking.
  • There is a long story about his early life in Scandinavia.
  • English legend says he later settled on the Ridgeway at Ashbury on the Berkshire Downs.
  • He lived at 'Wayland's Smithy'. A smithy is a metalworker's workshop. This was a prehistoric burial mound with stone rooms.
  • If your horse loses a shoe while riding along the Ridgeway, tradition says you should leave it at Wayland's Smithy with a silver sixpence and go for a walk. When you return, Wayland will have reshod your horse for you.
  • Wayland had an imp as an assistant. Once he ran low on horse shoe nails. So he sent him into the Vale of the White Horse to get some more.
  • Wayland saw the imp dawdling in the valley and threw a huge stone at him to hurry him up. It caught the imp on his heal and he sat down and cried. The stone has gone but the place is still called 'Snivellings Corner'.
  • It is said that Wayland has a very important horse to shoe every hundred years. For the Uffington White Horse magically gets down from the hillside and goes to find him.
  • Tradition says Wayland was seen in a pub in Woolstone once but had to rush out when he heard a horn and the White Horse's hooves thundering over to his smithy.
  • This is next due to happen sometime around 2020!


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