A YouTube searcher was stunned to discover what he believes is a ‘Knights Templar’ cave under a tree.
Brendan James, 29, stumbled upon the hidden gem in Schiffall, Shropshire, when a friend read about it online.
The YouTuber took his 3,000 subscribers on a virtual tour while filming himself to explore the cave.
Rumors are rife about the Canton Caves. Local estimates claim that the caves were used by followers of the Knights Templar in the 17th century.
But Historic England, which describes the cave as a “grot”, believes they were built in the 18th century – a few hundred years after the Templar order was dissolved.
Brendan said the mysterious underground site made him feel claustrophobic and uncomfortable.
Under a tree, with a small hole as the entrance, the cave would be easy to miss.
He said: “We went into it, and it’s a small crawl space that leads to a huge sandstone cave.
“You wouldn’t think in a million years it would be there.”
He said he was skeptical when he saw the cave open for the first time.
Although the cave has been linked to the Knights Templar – a powerful medieval military group of devout Christians – it is likely to be a Victorian folly.
Brendan said: “There were some photos online, but nothing of significance.
“But when I got there it opened my eyes. It was wide.
“Somebody got down there and tried to make such a beautiful carving.
“It must have looked ancient when it was first done.”
frozen in time
The cave is filled with original frescoes and Brendan also found a picture of a man in what looked like a “ritual room”.
As Brendan explored the cave’s corridors, he discovered a semi-collapsed wall, which caused him concerns about the structure’s safety.
He added: “I didn’t think I was claustrophobic, but I was grateful to be out.”
After being underground for about half an hour, Brendan said he exited the cave feeling dazed.
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