Stonehenge Crop Circle – Aliens, a hoax or energy rays from space?

18 07 2011

As if Stonehenge wasn’t mysterious enough, right across the road someone – aliens, hoaxers, or perhaps posessed lawnmowers – has created a giant crop circle. And nobody knows where it came from.

Stonehenge Crop Circle July 2011

Stonehenge Crop Circle July 2011

The ancient site is proving to be a popular attraction for crop circle-creators lately. Yesterday’s 60 metre wide effort is just the most recent in a string of field phenomena in Wiltshire over the last few weeks, reports the Daily Mail.

Stonehenge is the most important prehistoric monument in Britain.

The design spans 200ft and has sparked debate about its origin. Online enthusiast Eliakis Joseph-Sophia believes the “three half moons in the crop…could indicate plans due to budgets in the third quarter.”

“The crop is the other side of the road from Stonehenge. So clearly, the people involved in this crop cannot reach the sacred stones.”

Cynics claim crop circles are the work of computer scientists and volunteers, but enthusiasts argue nights – particularly in Summer – aren’t long enough for humans to get the work done by morning.

Many believe crop circles are the work of aliens or a message from God, while others are convinced it’s caused by the earth’s magnetic field or targeted energy zapped to the ground from the ionosphere

Sponsored by ‘The Stonehenge Tour Company’

Merlin at Stonehenge
The Stonehenge Stone Circle Website

Magic circles: walking from Avebury to Stonehenge

14 05 2011

A new walking path links Britain’s two greatest prehistoric sites, Avebury and Stonehenge, and is as epic as the Inca Trail

The Great Stones Way is one of those ideas so obvious it seems amazing that no one has thought of it before: a 38-mile walking trail to link England’s two greatest prehistoric sites, Avebury and Stonehenge, crossing a landscape covered with Neolithic monuments.

But like any project involving the English countryside, it’s not as straightforward as it might seem. The steering group has had to secure permission from landowners and the MoD, who use much of Salisbury Plain for training. They hope to have the whole trail open within a year, but for now are trialling a 14-mile southern stretch, having secured agreement from the MoD and parish councils. The “Plain & Avon” section leads from the iron age hill fort of Casterley Camp on Salisbury Plain down the Avon valley to Stonehenge. Walkers are being encouraged to test the route, and detailed directions can be found on the Friends of the Ridgeway website.

It’s an area all but the boldest have avoided: negotiating the MoD areas needed careful planning. Few walkers come here and not a single garage or shop along the Avon valley sells local maps. The Great Stones Way should change that.

What makes the prospect of the Great Stones Way so exciting is the sense that for more than a millennium, between around 3000 and 2000BC, the area it crosses was the scene of frenzied Neolithic building activity, with henges, burial barrows and processional avenues criss-crossing the route.

Stones mapAt Casterley Camp, high on Salisbury Plain, it takes me a while to realise what is strange about the landscape, as wild and empty as anywhere in southern England, and with a large burial mound directly ahead. Then it hits me: this is perfect high grazing country, but there’s not a single sheep. Maybe they have read the MoD notice which points out that “‘projectile’ means any shot or shell or other missile or any portion thereof”, and that over much of what you can see you’re liable to be hit by one. You can also be arrested without a warrant. But the trail cleverly and legally threads its way past the firing ranges towards a delightful and ancient droving road that plunges down between cow parsley to an old farm.

Five minutes in we are passed by a lone woman wearing Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses and heading determinedly towards the shooting area, where the red flags are up to signify that it’s a “live” day. In a Kensington and Chelsea accent, she tells us that she regularly drives down from London as it’s one of the few places “where you don’t run the risk of meeting anybody else”. I murmur that this might be because they know they’ll get shot at. “Oh, I love all that. It gets my endorphins going. I got back to the car once and found it ringed by military police. When I told them that I just enjoyed the walking, they didn’t believe me. They said, ‘How can you claim to enjoy walking when you don’t have a dog?'”

One animal practising its duck-and-cover technique here is the remarkable great bustard, recently reintroduced to the UK after its local extinction two centuries ago. At 40lbs, the male bird is one of the largest flying animals in the world, so it’s unmistakable even for the most hesitant birdwatcher. As we reach an isolated farm building, we pass a Land Rover full of enthusiasts heading off to track some down.

The trail curves below to cross and then follow the Avon, a river that loomed large in the affairs of Neolithic man. It was along the Avon that the bluestones of the Preseli hills in Wales are thought to have been transported by boat to Stonehenge, after being moved an almost unimaginable distance around both the Pembrokeshire and Cornish peninsulas to the river mouth at Christchurch.

There are some pretty villages along the upper Avon: Enfold, with its flint and stone church, and old funeral wagon in the nave; Longstreet, with the Swan pub appearing at the right moment for a lunchtime reappraisal of the route; Coombe and Fittleton, with their judas trees, mill ponds and dovecotes. At Figheldean (pronounced “file-dean”), an allotment holder tells me he doesn’t grow courgettes “because they’re foreign food”.

Woodhenge, WiltshireWoodhenge, Wiltshire. Photograph: AlamyIt’s a peaceful valley to stroll along, with some beautiful stretches under beech trees and past bluebell woods. Which is why it comes as a shock to have to stop for a couple of tanks to trundle past at Brigmerston ford. The route follows the tank tracks back across the river and out onto the plain, so the last stretch again has wide-open vistas of the prehistoric landscape. At Durrington Walls, the trail cuts through a huge enclosed area where the builders of Stonehenge may have lived – the site is aligned to face sunset on the summer solstice – and on past Woodhenge, with its concentric circles of wooden posts (marked now by concrete posts).

As the walk gets into its finishing stride, you pass the King Barrows still sleeping along their ridge, some of the few sites that remain unexcavated (the local farmer didn’t want the trees cut down), and the mysterious Cursus group of Bronze Age barrows, so named because 18th-century antiquarian William Stukeley thought it must have been built by the Romans for chariot races. Across a meadow land of dandelions and buttercups, the familiar silhouette of the stone and lintel circle finally appears, at the end of the processional avenue that once led there from the river. In the distance, the stones themselves are a flat grey. What gleams all around them, like fish circling, is the traffic on the A303.

I can’t help thinking how much better it is to arrive at Stonehenge on foot. The comparison that comes to mind, and which I know well, is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. The experience of trekking to both sites is immeasurably richer, not just because you’ve “earned it”, but because both sets of ruins are only properly understood in the context of the sacred landscape that surrounds them.

• For details of this 14-mile section of the walk, and accommodation and transport, see the Friends of the Ridgeway website:

Hugh Thomson’s The White Rock: An Exploration of the Inca Heartland (Phoenix, £10.99) has just been reissued to mark the centenary of the discovery of Machu Picchu. His most recent book is Tequila Oil(Phoenix, £8.99)

There are already ‘Crop Circles’ in Stonehenge and Avebury area well worth exploring.  If you do not have the time or require a guide try the excellent ‘Stonehenge Tour Company’
There is also a new ‘Henge Hopper service covering this area

The Henge Hopper

Merlin @ Stonehenge
The Stonehenge Stone Circle Website

Stonehenge Private Access tours 2011 – Go beyond the fences!

4 11 2010

Hot off the press – Stonehenge Access Dates!
I have just been sent 2011 dates for Stonehenge ‘private access’ tours (see below)  If you are planning on visiting Stonehenge in the next 12 months then I highly recommend joing one of these trips.

Stonehenge Inner Circle Tours - Go beyond the fences

Stonehenge Inner Circle Tours – Go beyond the fences

For those of you who have not visited this sacred site, I should mention that the complex is roped off. Visitors observe the stones from a distance and are not permitted within the temple complex……….Stonehenge special access tours allow you to be amongst the stones and to experience the magic.

There are a few sightseeing tour operators who offer this service and I have just been advised of the 2011 dates.  There are limited spaces and I highly recommend booking sooner rather than later – this is a very popular tour.  A fantastic photograph opportunity!

  • Stonehenge Special Access dates 2011
    January 2011 – 2nd, 14th, 21st, 24th, 31st
    February 2011 – 4th, 7th, 18th, 28th
    March 2011 – 7th, 14th, 25th, 28th
    April 2011 – 3rd, 6th, ,7th, 10th, 11th, 14th, 17th, 20th, 21st, 24th, 25th, 28th
    May 2011 – 1st, 4th, 5th, 8th, 9th, 12th, 15th, 18th, 22nd, 23rd, 26th, 29th
    June 2011 – 1st, 2nd, 5th, 6th, 9th, 12th, 15th, 21st
    July 2011 – 3rd, 6th, 7th, 11th, 10th, 14th, 17th, 18th, 21st, 24th, 28th, 31st
    August 2011 – 4th, 7th, 8th, 10th, 11th, 14th, 17th, 18th, 21st, 22nd, 25th, 28th
    September 2011 – 1st, 5th, 8th, 11th, 15th, 18th, 29th

Private tours can often be arranged for alternative other dates for families and small groups  but need to be booked well  in advance

These Stonehenge access tours can be booked through the excellent  ‘Stonehenge Tour Company’  website.  For a selection of other Stonehenge Tours from London that can also include:  Bath, Lacock Village, Salisbury Cathedral, Windsor Castle, Avebury Stone Circle, The Cotswolds, Oxford etc click here

The Stonehenge Tour Company

The Stonehenge Tour Company

Avebury Stone Circle

One or two operators offer tours that include Stonehenge and Avebury plus nearby Silbury Hill, West Kennet Long Barrow, Chalk hill figures and even crop circles (April – September) Try The Stonehenge Tour CompanyHistouries UK and Salisbury Guided ToursShould you need any unbias advice on organising a tour to Stonehenge please do email me –

Merlin @ Stonehenge
The Stonehenge Stone Circle Website

Stonehenge archaeologists reveal global warming theory behind crashed UFO remains

8 10 2010

Stonehenge, Wiltshire – (TinFoilHat Mess): Archaeologists excavating Stonehenge have found the remains of a pre-Atlanis era UFO which may have crashed during a flight from the Lunar base discovered by the moon-walking astronuts of the Apollo mission.

Stonehenge Quarantined

Stonehenge Quarantined

Much of the craft is believed to be intact with little corrosion to the mystery amalgam which makes up 90% of its structure.

Professor Tim Darvill of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) team that made the discovery said today that the next stage of the tricky operation would be entering the ancient craft and locating its cryogenic freezer units. ”

At this stage we don’t know if anything actually works inside,” Darvill commented, “but fingers crossed – we might be able to do a bit of thawing. “Without this intervention we’d have to wait for the natural phenomenon known as Global Warming to dictate the delicate process of unfreezing these alien remains.

 “Unfortunately we can’t wait that long. So our plan is to gently resurrect some of this advanced species – no blowtorches, microwaves or thermic lances, please chaps! – as well as any embryos and/or frozen infant offspring who clearly came here to seed our planet.” If the operation is successful the next stage will involve specialist scientists who are familiar with alien parenting techniques.

Professor Geoff Wainwright of the Yearling Extraterrestrial Intelligence (YETI) team in London’s Royal Freak Hospital will then take over while the Stonehenge site is quarantined.
Operation Homo erectus is being hailed as a triumph.

Now thats a story……………
Merlin @ Stonehenge Stone Circle

New Avebury to Stonehenge walk could rival Hadrian’s Wall

23 09 2010

The Great Stones Walk
A new long-distance footpath from Avebury Stone Circle to Stonehenge could topple Hadrian’s Wall as the UK’s most popular walking attraction.

The pathway is being planned by the Friends of the Ridgeway, who want to widen their focus beyond the National Trail.

Ian Ritchie, chairman of the Friends, told members of the Marlborough Area Board last week that the walk could pump an estimated £6 million into the local economy.

Mr Ritchie, who lives at Ramsbury, explained that the 29 mile Great Stones Walk connecting the two World Heritage Sites would pass through some of the best archaeological and historic sites in Britain.

He said: “This route has real historical integrity and goes by and through a wealth of archaeological and historic sites.

“It could become the première historical walking route in England held by Hadrian’s Wall at the moment.”

As well as being an international attraction for walkers, it would bring a welcome boost to the ailing rural economy.

Mr Ritchie said: “It will bring something like £6 million into the local economy, supported by the experience of the Hadrian’s Wall path, and create about 100 full-time or part-time jobs.”

The Friends estimate the walk would attract between 200,000 to 400,000 extra visitors a year and say consultations are taking place with landowners and parish councils along the route.

Later Mr Ritchie told the Gazette that the new path would link existing footpaths, bridleways and rights of way.

The cost of improving the route to National Trail standards has been estimated at about £105,000 and Mr Ritchie said it was hoped that much of the funding would come from the Salisbury Plain and North Wessex Downs AONB groups.

The area board meeting gave the new walk proposal its unanimous backing.

Merlin @ Stonehenge
The Stonehenge Stone Circle Website

Stonehenge Ale – A Taste for Crop Circles

16 09 2010

A subject very close to my heart, Beer!

THE Stonehenge Ales brewery at Netheravon has come up with a new beer in honour of the many crop patterns that appear in Wiltshire fields each summer.

Stig and Anna Marie Andersen, who took over the independent brewery from its founder Tony Bunce in 1993, are fascinated by the weird and wonderful shapes that show up each year.

Mrs Andersen is studying fine art at Winchester College and said that, regardless of whether the crop patterns were man-made or not, they had become an art form in their own right, attracting tourists from all over the world.

The new beer reaches local pubs this week and is called Glyph, a name chosen by Mrs Andersen as it represents the hieroglyphs the crop patterns might or might not be although their messages so far remain undeciphered.

The logo on the Glyph beermats shows the pictogram dubbed Led Zeppelin that appeared in fields at Alton Barnes 20 years ago.

“Now, 20 years on, the new beer Glyph, manifests itself at Stonehenge Ales in celebration of that formation,” said Mrs Andersen.

The new light amber beer, which has an ABV of 4.5 per cent, also has one mystical ingredient – aromatic Chinook hops grown on the tribal lands in America of the Chinook tribe.

From each batch of Glyph produced the brewery will be making a donation to the Crop Circle Connector web site, which Mrs Andersen said was an independent site respected worldwide.

You guessed it, not alot of Stonehenge news this month,  Watch this space………………

There are still a number of crop circles in maize in the vicinty of Stonehenge and Avebury.  I met up with a local guide working for HisTOURies  UK yesterday who showed me some incredible images.  Yes we did have a pint of ‘Croppies’ together in the Alton Barnes Barge Inn.  (Crop Circle central)

Merlin @ Stonehenge
The Stonehenge Stone Circle Website

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