In thirty years this has been the most extraordinary summer I have known. The lack of circles has been pronounced, almost to the point of non-existence. Indeed they have appeared, mainly in Hampshire, my stamping ground, where the rash of circles started to emerge in the early 1980’s. At first, mostly simple, single circles gradually appeared, evolving not only in complexity but in location - and a few poor ones made by notorious Doug and Dave - with Wiltshire becoming the main hub of activity over the years.
I wonder how we view this phenomenon? Personally, I believe there is a consciousness - maybe linking the human mind to this crop circle Consciousness - a Cosmic, Universal Consciousness. As interest grew so the number of circles increased, just as the complexity, symbolism and geometry became more apparent. The more they were welcomed, the number seemed to increase rising to a crescendo of circles in 1998 when I recall photographing over 60 circles - a truly bumper year. In subsequent years the number I recorded was in the 50’s and 40’s, gradually declining to the 30’s and decreasing each year since.
What is the reason for this decline? As the rise in the number of circles so the number of visitors increased, becoming a worldwide phenomenon but - at the same time, over enthusiastic visitors were not always aware that it was private land and the crops are the farmer’s livelihood. And so the majority of farmers gradually decided that they needed to protect their fields; another factor was the hoaxing element; groups appeared in greater number testing their skills without any thought for the poor farmers who were starting to feel beleaguered. However, this decline did not deter the phenomenon as many mind-blowing events have graced our land regardless. Could the Press, including some big press names, also be held responsible for this decline as they regularly featured the hoaxers in their press releases? (A scientific paper I once sent up was ignored by all)
How do we know which is a genuine circle? That becomes a matter of experience in knowing how to discern the tell-tale signs and what to look for, BUT you need to be one of the very first people in the circle in order to conduct a physical examination before the crop is trampled and evidence unwittingly destroyed. Getting into a circle to scrutinise it early is almost impossible now, so I rely on the results of my scientific research and the glaringly obvious extraordinary geometry of such unimaginable complexity, perfection and accuracy that is it has to be any beyond human involvement.
I am going to show you the circles that have appeared in Hampshire and one in Wiltshire since I last wrote:
Littleton, Hampshire 3 June 2019. I entered the field with a musician friend with the farmer’s permission. It was a glorious early summer’s day.
I found the exquisite little poppies poking their heads up through the barley.
I walked all the way round the hill fort a couple of years ago. The view was immense. Built in the 6th century BC the fort was in use for almost 500 years.
We are told that ‘...with the permission of the site's owner, Hampshire County Council, archaeological excavations began in 1969 and continued until 1988. Over the twenty seasons archaeologists spent examining the site, they looked at the defences and the gateway, and excavated 57% of the interior, where the remains of wattle and timber houses were discovered. It was the lengthiest investigation of any hill fort in western Europe.’
The hill fort was surrounded by poppies. I read that ‘Yarnbury Castle is located in an area of unimproved grassland on the upper chalk north of the Wylye Valley, and on the edge of Salisbury Plain, which is the largest remaining area of calcareous grassland in north-west Europe. The local area supports a rich and diverse grassland flora, which led to it being declared a biological Site of special scientific Interest in 1951.’ Dating to some 100 years BC the main earthworks showed signs of habitation over the ages with evidence of wooden structures, bones, pottery. Celtic and later Roman coins.
The most exquisite one of all to date was found in Büren an der Aare, near Bern, Switzerland.
A fortnight ago I took four charming and interesting Australians on a tour. They did not mind that there were no crop circles; they wanted to visit places of power, especially sites where many crop circles had appeared over the years. Our first stop was Hackpen where legend tells us that at certain times of the year, the hill opens up and wonderful music is heard. Small people invite you to enter and join the fun and when you come out the next morning you are never quite the same again.
There are three copses that grace the skyline at Hackpen. We walked all along the path to the field where many wondrous circles have been found and on the way back to the car we entered the first copse. We felt it was enchanted and magical and we spent some considerable time among the trees. Next, I drove us to Barbury Castle where again many circles have appeared including the amazing Pi to the power of nine formation in 2008. Barbury Castle is a massive Iron Age Hill Fort and in the past it has taken me a morning to walk around. Our last stop before lunch was East Field, the field where more than 100 circles have appeared over the years.
We had lunch at the excellent Honey Street Café before visiting the exceptionally fine crop circle exhibition in the same location. It has been brilliantly and expertly put together by Monique Klinkenberg from Holland and takes you through much of the history of the phenomenon supported by super photographs and drawings. Our final visit was to the wonderful ancient Neolithic West Kennett Long Barrow which like so many of the sacred places in that area is full of history as it lies in the landscape of our forefathers. The group had brought their singing bowls; bowls of pure crystal. We held a ceremony in the special spot where the acoustics are of quite unusual quality. It was such a wonderful finale to a remarkable day.
It seems as though we are more than half way through the crop circle season already, maybe they will come all in a rash.
Both my tours are fully booked and all we need are a few circles!!
However, we are lucky to have already been blessed and I remain an essential optimist.
If you would like to know more about this miraculous, teasing and mercurial phenomenon please have a look at my book and I will be very happy to sign it for you.
With my love and all best wishes,