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Stonehenge Gathering 2005 photo by John Knowles


Diagram showning the Bowing or heel Stone

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Latest Equinox and Solstice News

Past Events:

2006 June Solstice was a really good night of drumming in the stones. Large gathering.

At the Spring Equinox, March 21st 2006 Stonehenge was open as usual, early in the morning, 5:30ish, with some security people on duty. Sunrise obsured by clouds. More people than usual, but still plenty of room in the circle, for dancing and musicians, some drumming. Celebrations were begun overnight on the droveway, with a few vans, trucks, campers and cars. People gathererd around a fire. A circle was cast, opened and inviting all. Good mellow vibe. Afterwards, many of us went to Avebury and the Red Lion Pub.

2005 was great! Crowd estimated at over 5000
2005 photo 1   2005 photo 2   2005 photo 3   2005 photo 4

2003 Celebrations at the Solstice
On Saturday 21st. June the large temporary free Solstice car park at Stonehenge was opened from 00.01 hrs. to 14.00 hrs. - Many people who had left cars on the verge of the nearby roads were getting ticketed by Wiltshire Police - a tactic they have used for many years; it probably helps to pay some of the costs, otherwise borne by the local tax payers.

Free access to The Stones (subject to security searches) was only permitted from 02.00hrs. to 12.00 hrs.
The Solstice was at 19.12 hrs. on Saturday and so the Solstice dawn could have been either Saturday or Sunday.

Campaigners intended to protest at the decision to deny access with music fun and agit prop Morris dancing. They are demanding full restoration of their traditional rights of free access to Stonehenge and provision of land for camping while attending the Midsummer Solstice Celebration from the 21st to 23rd June 2003.

It was great to be there again, a big crowd, packed solid -like sardines, at the dawn. E. H. had designated the West side as Exit Only - the side you approach from the site entrance, So even drummers found it impossible to get in then. Helen the Hat thanked us all for coming to her party, and invited an American Indian to speak - that Stonehenge was one of the Earth's Chackras. That we should have better access to it.

Amplified music is banned by English Heritage but acoustic musicians and groups wanting to participate in the celebration should contact
stonehengeentertainmentsdiscussion - E group working on the music/entertainment aspect of the solstice gathering at the stones and the extended gathering.

Bring blankets, food, water, a drum, a guitar, what you expect to find and join in the fun for the future of the Stonehenge Midsummer Solstice Celebration.

Check out your portal to infinite possibility

StonehengePeace E group dicussing the wider issues surrounding the stonehenge situation.

What is conscious partying - and how do we achieve it? This e group has been created to process this question and to feedback our experience of the collective party/events that are hapenning to wards the goal of fully conscious partying. - A zillion links and stonehenge related stuff

2002 Summer Solstice featured the usual only acoustic music. The Bongos and Drums are a recording of just after the dawn, with light rain, and overcast sky.

2001 Thursday 21st. June. Summer Solstice:

English Heritage (who own the gates fences and guards) offered free access to the Stones for all who come in peace from 8pm to 9am on Wednesday 21st June. Conditions included No dogs, No fires, No camping, No electric music, no climbing, Self Policing - green stewards, and that we all leave after at 9am
English Heritage provided a free Car-Park, in the gallops. Which opened about 6pm, on the evening, Wed 20th. June.
There were horse drawn travellers, busses coaches and vans, and a colourful convoy of some unusual bicycles.
A few thousand gathered at the Stones from 8pm.
The Sun rose clearly over the horizon.
A peaceful happy solstice occured. There was lots of drumming, bagpipes, and a fireshow. A "Mummers" Play, night and morning, staring King Arthur Pendragon, and Helen the Hat.
At 9am a procession of those remaining, left the Stones.

2000 Summer Solstice, hundreds of people were allowed access to the stones, from about 11pm the previous evening. A peaceful gathering took place.

'99 Report of Solstice: About 300 people gained access to the Stones, at the Summer Solstice in '99. Many police, and the helicopter for about 3 hours, with the searchlight. About 100 were pursuaded to leave the field, eventually the police moved in on the rest, like roman soldiers, (bit like '88 but not a riot) and began to eject people, sometimes forcibly. Many got back in over the fence. Media personnel were getting equipment taken by police and english heritages' security, only to have to give it back after high level police intervention. People standing on the Stones, including a girl, shouting "come and get it boys" were pissing on the police. At this piont the police retired a while, it took hours to complete. One person I spoke to said that he and his girlfriend managed to wedge themselves in between Stones, and were about the last to be arrested. He is anxious about bieng charged for Assaulting a Police Officer, when all he did was grab hold around his lower legs. More like Resisting Arrest. Coachloads of pre-arranged visitors/guests/ticket holders? and Druids, which were held nearby for the dawn, were NOT allowed access.

88Drawings from my experience of the near riot:
Taking Chillum on the "Captured" Heel Stone - 159Kb.
Looking Back - 254Kb. Helicopter says "DISPERSE NOW, Or there will be further arrests"
Amesbury Roundabout - 169Kb. Rosie's TK Truck - She'd been arrested


Festival Eye Article about Wally Hope and the Stonehenge Peoples' Free Festival

Festival Eye Article about the Millennium, Stones, etc.

I used to attend the Stonehenge Peoples Free Festival, in the late '70's until 1980   Send email

Other Links

Travellers' School Charity
Festival Eye Magazine
Stonehenge 1985

Index top Wally Hope Page
Updated Sun Jan 31 19:06:03 GMT 2010

Sound clip Recorded by mobile phone in the Stones at sunrise, Spring Equinox 2007