Page last updated at 10:59 GMT, Sunday, 21 December 2008

Hundreds celebrate shortest day

Celebrating Winter Solstice

Hundreds of druids, pagans and tourists flocked to Stonehenge in Wiltshire to celebrate the Winter Solstice early on Sunday morning.

The pagan tradition celebrates the shortest day of the year.

Nearly 2,000 people, some dressed in cloaks and robes, saw the sunrise at the prehistoric site. The Summer Solstice can attract more than 20,000.

Rupert Irving, 28, from Cirencester, described Stonehenge as "spectacular" and said the "sky was beautiful".

"It was a shame the sun was not up but the sky was really nice with shades of blue and orange.

"It was a really nice backdrop to the stones," he said.

"It's a religious festival for some people and it's great to be a part of it, and they don't mind, there's such a great atmosphere."

A 20m visitor centre is to be built at the site but Heritage minister Barbara Follett has postponed an announcement about the location of the centre until January.

English Heritage and The National Trust are in disagreement over where the centre should be built.

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Stonehenge 'older than believed'
09 Oct 08 |  Wiltshire

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