Letter: Stonehenge for all

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The Independent Culture

Stonehenge for all

Sir: Stonehenge is the focus of much irrational argument and action. On one side, some people want to use it in various, sometimes contradictory and often damaging, ways - the so-called Druids and Pagans celebrating the summer solstice this week, so-called New Age travellers, and all sorts of tourists and passers-by.

On the other side, some people want to stop most people using it and to control the way a few people can use it - so-called English Heritage, the Government, and the police.

But Stonehenge isn't really anyone's property, whatever the authorities say. No one can be sure when, or why, or how, or by whom it was built, or what it was for, if it was ever for anything.

It used to be used by anyone who wanted to do so. When we stopped at Stonehenge we enjoyed going right up to the stones, touching them and even climbing them. Surely this is the right use of such a place? Rather than preserving Stonehenge as a sacred shrine or an ancient monument or a tourist spectacle, the authorities should leave it alone.

Those who fight to stop others using Stonehenge only make fools of themselves, while those who fight to use it may well be closer to its original meaning. Hands on Stonehenge!


London N1