Wayland’s Smithy and neo-Nazis


I’ve just read an invaluable reflection by archaeologist Dr Jonathan Last on the recent Telegraph story reporting that neo-Nazi groups have been holding religious ceremonies at Avebury and Wayland’s Smithy. 

The evidence came from a now-deleted video posted on YouTube of night time fire rituals and a swastika has reportedly been carved into one of the beech trees surrounding Wayland’s Smithy. The text is here.

DSC09122 Wayland’s Smithy, Aug 2018

Here’s the BBC News take on this story.

And here, The Mirror.

Dr Last points to the way British prehistory has been portrayed in the media as part of the problem. But he identifies a wider problem that, for all the sophisticated interpretations by academics, the public are fed a ‘conservative, nostalgic narrative of a lost rural England.’ This, Dr Last argues, chimes with the ‘blood and soil’ ideology of extremists. The 20th-century recreations of prehistoric monuments at Avebury and Wayland’s…

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Infection – Update- 19th July 2019 #gardening

Bramble Garden

I’ve just had a few weeks I would rather forget. I’ve spent a lot of time sitting here, recovering from an infection.

We spent a year renovating our 1930s summerhouse; it’s on a turntable, so it can follow the sun. I’ve watched the sunrise and sunset from my armchair, pondering on how a simple gardening injury can cause a potentially serious illness.

A few weeks ago I got a splinter in the palm of my hand. I was gardening and sweeping out my potting shed. A tiny drop of blood, it didn’t look serious. So I finished sweeping up before heading to the kitchen. I washed my hands in hot soapy water and extracted the splinter, put on a plaster and never gave it a second thought. I’ve had many thorns and splinters over the years, and always got away with it. This time I wasn’t so lucky and my…

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Are you being ‘Comic’ Conned? & Cons in the NW

Mike Moans

I’d like to start by thanking all those who took the time to read my last blog. That article alone had a near 35,000 unpaid reach on Facebook, this is mind blowing so thank you.

So lets talk about the lies, exaggerations and questionable advertising used by conventions in the UK. I’m going to fly by the obvious point that many conventions don’t even have comics at their ‘Comic’ Con. The standard excuse is normally the organiser being unable to locate comic book talent in England. Manchester has 17 creators within just a few miles and Oldham comic con has managed to muster 60+ comic guests on a shoe string budget. Oldham is free to attend. It had a budget less than half the size of other local organisers yet can get 60 comic guests including international talent, even both the creators of Judge Dredd. I will openly say I…

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Hen Harrier Day 2017 – Skydancer Awareness!

Naturalist Dara

On July 19th 2016, I wrote myfirst blog on Hen Harriers/Hen Harrier Day. I can’t believe how much has happened since then. Personally, in my own life, I feel my voice is getting stronger through my presence on my blog and on social media.Due toMark Avery’sessential awareness work andgrouse shooting debate (due to his successful petition); my voice is joined with countless others.


I have been lucky enough to see a Hen Harrier and truly it was one of the finest naturalist moments in my life. Knowing so well how very lucky I was, made it all the more poignant and heart searingly beautiful. I was actually given the opportunity to say a few words about it on BBC Radio 4’s Tweet of the Day. My voice was nervous, hesitant and cracked because honestly, it weighed heavily on my heart; due to the fate many Hen Harriers…

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