# Sorry! mail that arrived 5-16 Sept got lost.
Er - please write again.
# Send an sae for next (winter) newsletter.
# In July, David Icke was in the Stones with a group who had permission, and was thrown out and banned for misbehaving.
# The Chief Constable of Wiltshire is leaving in March. They are getting a new helicopter & CS gas.
# Whatley Quarry - expansion has been approved. Infoline 01749 880144
# A30 - Fairmile camp expected to be evicted very soon. Phone tree 01404 81572
# The new Chief Executive of English Heritage resigned in July over administrative irregularities'.
***STONEHENGE CAMPAIGN INTERNET WEBSITE***
WANTED: - words, dates, pictures, dates, help.
Also anything from VE day'95 for multimedia project.
# In case you missed it, the crop formation on the back page appeared in the field opposite the Stones on 7-7-96.
# Archaeologists now believe the 10,000 yr old holes in the Henge car park (marked by white circles) may have held totem poles.
At a Council meeting this month three parishes reported back yes, the ban should stay, one said yes but-, and one said no. There was some discussion of our civil liberties and of a possible festival, but only something like a Reading style event, with organisers paying the police lots of money. There was a vote, 9 - 5 against this.
They seem to think that access to the Stones for the Solstice depends on there being something else arranged that removes the need for an 'exclusion zone'.
There will be a 'round table conference" in the next few weeks to which 'interested parties will be invited', but we know of no-one who has. They complain 'it has not proved possible in the past to identify spokespersons for New Age Travellers'.
In the latest scheme this has become a 'Visitor Complex', which is now planned to be built behind the service station on the north side of the Amesbury roundabout. The site is vast: 1km long and nearly half the size of Amesbury itself. This is because the project would be a 'private finance initiative', under which a large company would be allowed 'in the public interest" to develop the site in a way that would 'normally be unacceptable" in return for them paying for the Stonehenge facilities included. Money would also come from the lottery millennium fund, which has to be applied for by November, so English Heritage are trying to rush the plans through without telling anyone details of what they are. Chairman Jocelyn Stevens startled local councillors by suggesting McDonalds would be a suitable partner to build the centre! "Tourists don't want McStoneburgers or Chicken McDruids. They want a magical and mystical experience." said one.
The scheme would also include a 'transport link" to a 'viewing/dropping off point" nearer the Stones, which could be a 2nd visitor centre on the environmentally sensitive King Barrow ridge, at the top of the hill going towards Amesbury.
A303 - Instead of making a long awaited announcement on the 'improvement" of this road, the DoT have been 'leaking" parts of their decision in stages. First it was learned that the northern routes near Larkhill have been ruled out, and that the long tunnel option was probably too expensive. That leaves on-line dualling, the southern route, or doing nothing. Then we heard that a local transport meeting was postponed, as a package of roadbuilding for S. Wilts was rumoured to be announced by the end of this month. This would include a decision on the controversial A36 Salisbury 'by-pass'. Police have already started advising landowners on the A36 route on how to stop their trees being occupied by protesters.
When English Heritage applied for their Visitor Complex planning brief to be passed, councillors wanted dualling of the A303 as a condition, but EH said they thought this was 'not a priority" for DoT.
UPDATE - A303 WIDENING AT STONEHENGE SHELVED!
On 27 Sept the DoT announced that they were dropping funding for any 'improvements' to the A303 past the Stones 'for the forseeable future'. They confirmed that all the surface routes proposed for dualling of the road had been rejected, and that they could not currently afford the 3 mile, £300m long tunnel alternative. The non-controversial by-pass for nearby Winterbourne Stoke will go ahead. This effectively rules out later reconsideration of the northern Henge by-pass route or the proposed (north) long tunnel route, as they would have included this by-pass on a completely different line.
There is still an option for the future, of a long tunnel to the south, which could join on to the new by-pass and run twice as far away from the Stones as the version the DoT considered.
The threat of further unwanted dualling of the A303 in the West Country may now recede, now that it has been accepted that part of the A303 is going to remain single carriageway.
The A344 running past the Heelstone can still be closed and grassed over, but the 303 will remain as is, so English Heritage won't get the road- free Millenium Park as they wanted it.
A decision on the A36 Salisbury by-pass is expected 1st week in Oct.
Herald for GlastonburyOrderofDruids, HonourarySecularOrderDruid, etc.;
To whom it may concern: on Wednesday the 19th June 1996 at 10.am. myself and two others, Richard a knight of the Loyal and Arthurian Warband, and King Arthur Pendragon, walked to Stonehenge from CaerBaden (Bath). We had a successful journey insofar as we reached Stonehenge (except for King Arthur) by 21 hundred hours on Thursday night, the 20th.
Having previously been told of the ground rules of such visits with a pieces of paper outlining the "exclusion zone" the procession order and what a tresspassory assembly was. Upon arriving at stonehenge, we stopped at the Celtic Cross at the foot of the Fargo plantation where we stopped for a picnic and were joined by some ten to twelve others, amongst them Gallahad.
At 9.30 that evening Police Inspector John Wicken came and 'had a chat' and left perfectly satisfied that we were not a trespassory assembly, in that we numbered only fifteen (not more than 19) and were there for the purposes of a picnic. I personally informed the inspector that the purpose of my visit was religious, not criminal, that I in no way intended to process to Stonehenge, (to be a part of a procession, which is more than one person - even a man and wife or child...) to go there on my own, to be there on my own, not to be part of any trespassory assembly and to welcome our sun god on the longest day- the transition period, to which he agreed that that was good policy.
One hour and ten minutes later he returned with 45 of his mates, with videos, still cameras and lights, our assembly, still being only 15 people. He asked us what we were doing, we said picnicing, he then told us that he had reason to believe that a breach of the peace would occur, and therefore advised us to move on towards Shrewton and Devizes. or be arrested.
I explained I was there for religous and not criminal purposes. he asked me again if I was prepared to move, at which juncture I said no, he said "I must arrest you" to which I replied- on what grounds, and on what charge, to which he replied "potential breach of the peace", when an arresting officer was found, he placed his arm on my arm, and cautioned me with the new caution at which point I placed my hand on his arm and arrested him under articles 9, 10,11 and 14 of the Strasbourg Convention of Human Rights 1953, and a cautioned him that anything he said could and would be used against him in said court. We were driven to Salisbury Police station, where after due process, we were locked in a cell, with no use of a telephone, no cup of tea, no blankets and I personally had to threaten a doctor in order to get medication for my serious back injury. at 4am 4 of us were driven to Amesbury police station where we were held until just after 6am when we were unceremoniously dumped on the street still not having had a cup of tea or a blanket with no charge.
38 others were arrested with me that night, among them 2 arch druids, King Arthur Pendragon and 10 of his knights, 33 of whom were not charged of the 6 who were charged 2, travelling on their own, were charged with Procession, the other 4 having been in pairs.
Dark was the night on Salisbury Plain, and a red moon hung broodingly over Stonehenge, just visible above the glaring Security Lights of the A344 police Road-block as I approached. As well as being Summer Solstice, today was World Peace Day, and as a Druid I had come to pray for Peace. The Police told me that if I did this I would be arrested for a Breach of the Peace.
Walking down the noisy A303 past the Stones, the sound of my mandolin is drowned out by a convoy of 43-Ton lorries thundering past, reminding me of the previous week's MOD gunfire, which I had heard from Tan hill, Avebury, 15 miles away, for over 24 hrs. Breach of the Peace?
After spending the night in Salisbury Police Cells, along with every other Druid arrested at Stonehenge, I was pleased to hear that a female Bard had managed to play her Harp inside the Stones (before being arrested), but this must have been while the Armed Guards were away. Yes, that's right, ARMED Guards inside Stonehenge. I wonder - were they there to pray for Peace?
Out of the 40 or so Arrests at Solstice (over a dozen Druids) some 13 have been charged, 4 of whom are members of the Loyal Arthurian Warband, are current!y fighting this through the Courts as a Civil Rights issue. So are we Criminals, Freedom Fighters or victims of religious persecution? Welcome to Nazi Britain!
I was let out of Prison the following day, and as I sat in the Sun Circle at Avebury Henge I was reminded of the earlier Stonehenge Free Festivals. The Dawn Stonehenge Harper arrived & her music drifted among the Sarsens, mingling with the singing of the skylarks. Peace at last!
The Summer Solstice Ritual was one of the most moving yet, and although it was held at Avebury Henge, I remember this was the Tribal Ceremonial Centre of Britain before Stonehenge was built to replace it. However, about a week before Solstice, 10 of the Avebury Sarsens were vandalised: daubed with thick black and white emulsion paint from top to bottom. It occurred to me that the timing of this desecration (just before the Solstice) was rather a 'coincidence'. Predictably, the Wiltshire newspaper I read blamed seasonal 'New Age Travellers'. It is now a possibility that English Heritage will fence off part of the site, as the National Trust have started doing already. Perhaps there is a conspiracy going on to prevent those of us using Avebury for Ritual purposes at Summer Solstice from gaining access? If so, by graffiti-ing the Stones at such a sensitive time of year, the blame can be soon linked to the Media's illusory "Seasonal Menace" English Heritage perpetuate at Stonehenge.
As a consequence, Police powers to remove us from Stonehenge at Midsummer & lock us up all night are such that you don't have to be breaking any laws for them to be able to do it. They can release you without charges, 12 hrs. later of course, and we can beat them through the courts on this. However, the Police can still nick people for no reason by their Powers of Arrest alone, thus preventing even single persons, within the law, from reaching Stonehenge. Under Common Law, the "possibility" of an individual being a "possible" cause of someone else's "possible" Breach of the Peace is enough for them to put you in Jail for the night. [No it isn't - but they still did it - ed]
I've been thinking (dangerous) : since I was arrested and Charged for being a 'Procession', I thought maybe the Police should arrest the Constellations of the Zodiac, as their alignments at Stonehenge are linked to the Procession of the Equinoxes. So how about a new clause in the CJA for an 'Illegal Procession of Heavenly Bodies'?
From the Stonehenge Battleground - Peace to you all! Llwch, L.A.W.
A few years ago, I travelled to Stonehenge to watch the annual gathering of a strangely dressed tribe of itinerants. They came from all directions, in Range Rovers, helicopters and riot vans. They camped on the verges and spent the day engaged in the cabalistic ritual of sticking pins into maps. They blocked up the roads with their red and white totems and stood in respectful formation in front of them. Finally, no longer able to contain my curiosity, I walked up to a barrier and asked one of pilgrims why. Why the numbers, the machinery, and the monumental expense?
At first he looked lost, and stood in puzzled silence beside his road cones and stripy tape. Then his brow cleared. "Last year," he told me, "there was human excrement left in the field."
This year the police force's revelry at Stonehenge was facilitated by provisions of the new Criminal Justice Act. They didn't make a lot of difference, as the police were using these powers at Stonehenge even before they existed. The official reason for this six-figure show of force is not the lack of a Portaloo, but the damage the visitors would do to the monument if they were allowed in. Hippies' feet, of course, are rougher than those of the worshipers who have used the site sporadically for the last 4000 years, and would rapidly grind the stones into dust.
Meanwhile, a few miles down the road, the Ministry of Defence has recently completed its renovation of another scheduled ancient monument: a unique and archaeologically famous Bronze Age boundary ditch, which, despite years of pleas and warnings, it filled in to make a tank track. It can add this victorious manoeuvre to an impressive tally of enemy installations it has damaged or destroyed on Salisbury Plain, including longbarrows, roundbarrows, tracks and dykes. As on previous occasions, the ministry has been politely asked not to do it again.
The high jinks at the stones illustrate an absurdity that prevails all over Britain. Not only at Stonehenge, but in almost every corner of the countryside, we are shut out of the land which once was ours. The reasons for our exclusion, while appearing robust from a distance, behave rather as the stones are said to do. They crumble as one approaches them.
As the ethics of enclosure spread further, now penetrating cities as well as the countryside, increasing numbers will find that they are trespassing on the planet.
Whenever I am caught trespassing on a large estate I am told I'm intruding on the owner's privacy. It is of little account that the owner may live in a wholly different part of the country or that I may never come within sight of his house. By crossing the boundaries of his land, the gamekeepers tell me, I may as well have stepped into his living room.
This hyperbole exposes the weakness of the argument. Our homes and their immediate surroundings are, of course, our private domains, and most of us are content with that. Why a large landowner's need for privacy is so much more pressing than ours that it should extend to a substantial proportion of Britain has yet to be adequately explained.
Visitors to the countryside, we are told, damage landscape features and destroy wildlife. Well, the ramblers have obviously been hard at work, for huge swathes of countryside have, in the last few decades, lost all their hedgerows, ancient woodlands, downland, watermeadows, heathland and archaeological remains. In many places there is hardly a feature remaining to arrest the eye. It is, in reality, because we are excluded - not only from the land itself but also from the decision-making processes affecting it - that landowners have been able to make a clean sweep of the countryside, replacing our history and sense of belonging with what some have proudly described as a factory floor.
There are places, like Derwentwater and Dovedale, where the pressure of numbers does damage the land, and there are others where the fauna or flora is so vulnerable that it can tolerate no intrusion, but these conditions are rare and localized. They fail to justify our exclusion from the rest of Britain. Some visitors to the countryside do, as landowners claim, damage hedges or frighten livestock, but restricting these activities (and there are plenty of laws with which to do so) does not necessitate excluding the harmless majority. We don't ban everyone from using the pavements because a minority of passers-by spray graffiti or break shop windows.
The gamekeeper's penultimate resort (the last is always that he's bigger than me and legally empowered to throw me off ) is that we have an adequate network of footpaths, from which there's no need to stray. Regrettably, many of the most charming and intricate corners of Britain are wholly inaccessible by public footpath. Indeed it seems that while some landowners have allowed us to walk across places they have destroyed, they have largely succeeded in keeping us out of the places they have chosen to preserve.
Even this inadequate network is under attack, as, after years of obstruction by means of fences or ploughing, footpaths are extinguished on the grounds that no one uses them any more. Perhaps more importantly, one visits the countryside to escape from the constraints of dedicated space, the narrow regimentation imposed by the pavement, the office or ten square metres of garden. Keeping to the footpath does little to relieve our sense of confinement.
As one examines the ethics of ownership, it becomes clear that excluding people from the land is not, as landlords suggest, a duty, but a privilege. In buying a swathe of Britain you buy the right to exclude other people from it. The exclusive use of land is perhaps the most manifest of class barriers. With physical exclusion, one obtains a guarantee of social removal from the common herd.
The rest of us are, quite literally, pushed to the margins of society. Having confined us, through centuries of enclosure, to the cities, most landlords now intend to keep us there. If we enter the countryside we must sneak round it like fugitives, outlaws in the nation in which we all once had a stake. As the ethics of enclosure, propelled by the Criminal Justice Act, spread further, now penetrating cities as well as the countryside, increasing numbers will find that they are trespassing on the planet.
It is, in truth, not we who are the trespassers but the landlords. They are trespassing against our right to enjoy the gifts that Nature bequeathed to all of us. We must challenge this intrusion by demanding a statutory right to roam, which would require the owner to produce a good reason for excluding us, rather than requiring us to produce a good reason for being there. In the meantime we should, like the people trying to enter Stonehenge, heed John Major's call for a classless society, by trespassing in the countryside as often and as comprehensively as possible.
=== LETTER FROM WILLY X ===
Graffitti-ing the Stones at Avebury woz out of order. Bad news.
Pedestrianise Avebury - dig up and remove all the roads inside the Stone Circle.
Stop the sheep using Glastonbury Tor. They have been and are destroying the spiral..
Willy X Autumn '96.
=== POEM FROM BIG PETE ===
As I awoke this morning and got out of bed
and went down the stairs these thoughts filled my head
as i put pen to paper and remember what i said
many friends have died; this is what they said;
as long as the Stones are standing, as long as the word is read
we are only sleeping, your words are our bread.
so my friend keep on breathing and remember what's been said
for we're not so sure when living than when we are dead.
For like our brothers and sisters our mothers and fathers too
the Sun the Stones Mother shines on them always anew
and when their father the Moon is a beautiful blue
and his wife is rising, their kisses are the dew
so let us rejoice for everything come anew
and we are still talking because of you.
The Stones walkabout and sing too
this must not be forgotten, it has not because of you.
, ______ _________ _______ , , / Free \ / The \ / Stones \ , , \________/ \_________/ \_______ / , , ____ ___ ___ ____ , , / \ / \ / \ / \ , , | | | | o | ! ! ! , , | | | | m | ! ! ! ,