Stonehenge is one the most famous prehistoric monuments of Britain. The final stage of Stonehenge can be seen today, which was completed around 3,500 years ago. 

According to Stonehenge’s website, Stonehenge was constructed in four stages.   

First stageStonehenge: The first version was a large, earthwork-like Henge that included a bank, ditch, and Aubrey holes. It was built around 3100 BC. 

The Aubrey  holes are round pits in the chalk, about one metre (3.3 feet) wide and deep, with steep sides and flat bottoms. 

Stonehenge (pictured) is one of the most prominent prehistoric monuments in Britain

Stonehenge (pictured is one of the most prominent prehistoric monuments found in Britain).

They form a circular shape of 86.6 metres (284ft) in circumference. 

Excavations revealed that some chalk filling contained cremated human bones, but the holes themselves weren’t made to be graves, but were used in a religious ceremony.

Stonehenge, which was abandoned at the end of its first stage, remained untouched for more 1,000 years. 

Second stageStonehenge’s second, most dramatic stage began around 2150 BC. Around 82 bluestones were brought from south-west Wales by a group of people. Some of the stones, which can weigh up to four tonnes each, were believed to have been dragged by rollers and sledges into Milford Haven where they were loaded onto rafts.

They were carried on the water along the south coast and up the rivers Avon, Frome, before being dragged acrossland near Warminster and Wiltshire.

The last stage of the journey was mainly on water. It took place down the river Wylye from Salisbury, then along the Salisbury Avon from west Amesbury. 

The journey covered almost 240 miles. Once at the site the stones were placed in the centre of the circle to make a partial double circle. 

The original entrance was also widened and a pair Heel Stones were added. The midsummer sunrise was aligned to the nearer portion of the Avenue. 

Third stageThe arrival of the sarsen rocks (a type of sandstone) was the third stage in Stonehenge. It took place around 2000 years BC.

They were most likely brought from the Marlborough Downs (40 kms or 25 miles north of Stonehenge). 

Stonehenge’s largest sarsen stone weighs 50 tonnes. It is impossible to transport them by water, so it is believed that they were moved using sledges or ropes. 

Calculations show that 500 men would have needed to pull one stone using leather ropes. An additional 100 men would have been required to lay the rollers before the sledge.

These stones were placed in an outer circle with continuous lintels, which are horizontal supports. 

Five trilithons, consisting of two upright stones, and one across the top as an lintel, were placed inside the circle in a horseshoe arrangement. They can still be seen today. 

Final stage: The fourth, and final stage was just after 1500 BC. This is when the smaller bluestones where rearranged in the horseshoe or circle that can be seen today.

The original number, which was likely around 60 stones, in the bluestone circle was about 60. However, these stones have been removed or broken up. Some are still below ground level as stumps.