Our feedback to English Heritage on this years (2013) Summer Solstice at Stonehenge.

On the matter of this years summer solstice at Stonehenge we would like

to say that we were impressed with the organisation, level of security

and good humour of staff involved. Thank you.


We would still like to see, however, provision for a more sacred space at

this sacred time. People are there not just to party, but to celebrate an

ancient festival, learn about the Earths ways and join together in

community and ceremony.


At this years event, we were able to join in a small space just on the

outside of the stones for a ceremony at sunrise, which started with 7

people involved, then quickly rose to over 50, all of whom expressed

thanks and joy in being able to be welcomed and involved in a ceremony at

this special time. We were heartened that members of the local community

and the present mayor of Amesbury were involved in the ceremony.

However we did have to move rubbish, and work around very drunk people to

achieve this possibility.


We think that there is definitely now an opportunity and a will for a

space being created for Druid groups and others to lead an inclusive,

ceremony within the stones at sunrise during the summer solstice for the

visitors and local community.

If this was to be announced within the literature and information before

the event, and an organised group (which could join together, or rotate

each year perhaps), process in at this time, we believe that the crowd

would enjoy a little more depth in their celebration.


They could still enjoy the event, but it would bring a more sacred aspect

to this most special time. At present this is still unfortunately

lacking, and to many people and visiting groups, a party without the more

sacred aspect shows a disrespect to the sacred temple of Stonehenge.


Unfortunately, there was still a lot of misuse of drugs at the event,

which we know everyone is working to limit, however, we were asked by

young people if we had any drugs to sell in the carpark(!) We also

overheard other young people asking for ketamine, as if it was the most

natural thing in the world to do there. It is shocking and sad that this

still seems to be the expected norm for many of the visitors at this time.


We are of course aware of the history of the summer solstice event in

particular, and how far things have progressed, however, we are still

strongly compelled to work towards a more integrated and sacred event

where all people have the opportunity to come and celebrate with love and



Each time we go to celebrate and create ceremony at Stonehenge, and

particularly at the summer solstice, we meet groups from overseas. and

other individuals, who are coming here for a sacred event in this our most

sacred temple, it is hard to explain to them why there are drunk or

drugged people lying around the stones or partying hard, when there is no

clear space for ceremony. Last year, as you may be aware, we hosted the

Ambassador of Bolivia and two Aymara priests who wanted to join at

Stonehenge in ceremony at the summer solstice. It was so shocking to them

to see the party instead of a ceremony. In Tiwinaku, their ancient temple

is attended by similar numbers of people as here at the summer solstice,

but the priests there carry out sacred ceremony at the sunrise, (the

president even attends this) and after, the crowds are allowed in to the

temple to celebrate.


There is clearly still a way to go, but we believe it is possible to find

further ways forward and are committed to being part of the solution.


Yours sincerely,


Aes Dan Grove.