England’s Petrifying Well

This post is a part of A-Z Challenge for bloggers, that takes place every year in the month of April. Bloggers take part in this challenge for self improvement and to overcome the “writer’s block”. Each one of us writes one article everyday, starting from the alphabet ‘A’, right up to ‘Z’. My theme for this year’s challenge is – mind-blowing facts and theories.


One of the England’s first tourist places, The Petrifying Well is a mystical well located on the banks of the river Nidd, near Knaresborough in North Yorkshire. I say mystical because it converts objects into stones! Objects ranging from leaves, sticks, dead birds, small trinkets or big bicycles etc., touched by the well’s dripping waters naturally turn to stone within a few weeks.

Various objects like headphones, kettle, a dead lobster turned to stone by the Well’s dripping water

People for many centuries believed the well to be evil because of the fact that the side of the well looks like a giant’s skull. With the fear of turning into a stone, people stayed away from the well’s water. On the other hand, some believed it’s water to possess magical powers of healing, and hence would bring their deceased or sick family & friends to bathe under the water hoping to be cured miraculously.

Teddy bears hung by visitors in the well, gradually turning to stones

Eventually, modern day scientists analyzed water samples from the well, busting all myths surrounding it. They found the water to be rich in mineral content which with time forms a coating around objects. Therefore, prolonged exposures create a coating of a hard mineral shell. But what amazes everyone is the rapid rate at which objects are turned into these hard shells, which is over just a few weeks.

A bicycle covered with hard mineral shell within months

Well, I don’t know about you guys, but I now surely have another task to tick off my checklist.



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