Royston and District Local History Society
Exact details of the origins of Royston Cave are unknown, with some theories suggesting that it may have been dug as early as Neolithic times, approximately 3,000 BC. However, the chalk in this area only provides small flint nodules, generally unsuitable for axe making, so this may cast some doubt on this theory.
Cave Panorama © Martin Kaszak. Used with his kind permission.
The cave was discovered in 1742 when workmen were building a bench for women selling butter and cheese in the Butter Market. As they banged a post into the ground, it nearly disappeared - by chance they had found the centre hole of a millstone which had been placed on top of the cave and covered over.
This was removed and the soil excavated, revealing carvings on the walls of crucifixion scenes and various religious figures, such as St Catherine, St Christopher, etc.
Most of the wall decoration is thought to have been done during the time of the Crusaders, when the cave was believed to have been used as a chapel by the Knights Templar organisation. The entrance is beside the Cave Shop.
The Society has produced a number of resources for those who wish to know more about the Cave.
For more information please see the Society's Publications page.
You can find out more information, including opening times, by visiting the Royston Cave website.