Solstice Again, Innit? Part the Second!

Recreation of Stonehenge made from car parts; PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo

Well, solstice is actually about over and we still haven’t produced the promised second post. We will hesitate no longer in the dubbing of our other Hengefinder General Extraordinaire: HGE Matt Penny, perpetrator, as always, of the supercalifragilistic website, Salisbury and Stonehenge dot Net. We have lost track of all of the henges and replicas he has alerted us to over the millennia during which we have been posting on the Clonehenge blog, but they have been numerous and as in the case of HGE Glastonbury, fascinating.

The one pictured above, entitled Citihenge, has, as far as we know, the honour of being the first corporately-named henge (but not as you may see at the end of this post, the only automobile henge). Not the first one built for advertising–Autohenge in Canada may hold that title. But the first, perhaps of many to come, that are named directly for a company, as advertisement. Think of it, in a few years not only replicas but even Stonehenge itself may have a corporate label: Barclay’s Bank Stonehenge, for example, or perhaps preferably, the Crawford Bourbon Biscuit Stonehenge. Oh brave new world!!

But back to Citihenge. Here is a video afforded to us by Hengefinder Apprentice Karl Dodd. Citihenge, ŠKODA advertisement video (Who is that man in the video and why is he dressed like Doctor Who?) Hmm, it refuses to embed. But we bravely forge on!

HGE Matt Penny has alerted us to everything from Stonehenge cakes, to replicas in process like the one being created in Canberra by Tracey and Robbie Wallace (on which we desperately need an update because if it doesn’t get a few lintels, it will not be hengy enough to post!), to the foamhenge we recently posted and many more. We thank and salute him for his numerous contributions!

Wait! One of the best things he steered us to has gone unmentioned. Recently he sent us a link to this article about the bouncy Stonehenge we posted about not long ago, quoting this bit:

Jeremy Deller said: ‘A lot of my work deals with history, and Sacrilege is no exception, this is a way to get reacquainted with ancient Britain with your shoes off.’

 The first venue on this nomadic tour of the UK is the National Botanic Garden in west Wales, where the inflatable monument will be inaugurated for a second time by children from local schools and a team of local gymnasts. On this special occasion to mark the first London 2012 Festival event in Wales, entry to the Botanic Garden will be free of charge for the whole day, allowing visitors a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience. ‘Bouncers’ are being encouraged to download free ‘Druid Beards’ from the Sacrilege website – , colour them in and arrive in druid fancy dress.

Emergency Druid beard

He knew that beard thing was deep in the Clonehenge spirit! As is being invited to arrive at the bouncy Stonehenge in Druid fancy dress, whatever the bleep that is! Not that it is the type of thing we do, mind you, but because it is the kind of thing that makes us smile in disbelief and reflect that while people are downloading and colouring Druid beards, and putting together their Druid fancy dress, they are not shooting each other or plotting ways to make shopping centers or other things that lay waste the land that Stonehenge was lovingly built to adorn. They are being silly, and that’s when we love mankind–in the midst of its sillinesses! We think Matt Penny knows that. For that he deserves not only the title of Hengefinder General Extraordinaire but a permanent supply of Emergency Druid beards!!

We hope you had a wonderful summer solstice, and have a lovely summer. This, we predict is the year of henging mania, so as you go about your business, keep your eyes open for Stonehenge replicas wherever you go. Submit them when you find them and you, too, may someday achieve the high order of the HGE! Until then, amigos, happy henging!

P.S.: We know of these auto henges of various sorts: the Ontario Autohenge, Carhenge in Nebraska, Dubhenge, the 1987 Glastonbury Festival car trilithon (which we have not yet posted) made by the Mutoid Waste Company of Tankhenge fame, and the Stonehenge replica made of cars for The Secret Life of Machines. That’s five and there are probably one or two more. And we don’t count the ones without lintels, so don’t be sending us links to Cadillac Ranch!

Note: At the Sacrilege inflatable Stonehenge trinkets link you will find not only theDruid beard, but a “certificate of bounce” to be filled in once you’ve bounced and…. a printable cutout henge, suitable for making your own paper Stonehenge replica! An easy way to start henging!

Solstice Again, Innit? Part the First!

wooden model made in preparation for the famous Icehenge in Alaska

When you are somewhat lazy-arsed, as we are, it helps a great deal to have friends who are not similarly handicapped. We have a number of friends who keep an eye to the news and alert us when they find new Stonehenge replicas, old ones, too, if there is a chance we haven’t seen them. Today, in honour of the summer solstice, 2012, one half year, a mere six months, until nothing happens and everyone is deeply shocked to find the world hasn’t ended after all and they are going to have to find a way to pay for all that stuff they put on their credit cards, [drumroll] we are going to award two of our alert friends and readers with the title of Hengefinder General, Extraordinaire. In this post we fete the wonderful ancient sites photographer, Mr. Peter Glastonbury of Wiltshire. No one has brought more henges to our attention or contributed more to the Clonehenge blog than this fine fellow, and we hereby thank and salute him!

The replica above is an example of the brilliant henges we have had from Hengefinder Glastonbury. It is a photo of a painted wooden model made for the crew that created the beautiful Stonehenge replica made of ice in Fairbanks, Alaska some years ago. In a message passed along to us, Martin Gutoski says of it, “A local artist made a wooden model of it at the architect scale of ¼” = 1’ for the ice carvers to use but it recently burned up with his house fire last spring.” Truly it was a thing of beauty!

Page of the June 22, 1898 issue of The Sketch

The item above is another of his recent contributions: two historical small replicas in an article entitled The Strange Story of Stonehenge, dating from the 1890s! We surmise that the top one, a replica of Stonehenge in recent times, may be one of Henry Browne’s cork models. The other, of a “completed” Stonehenge, appear to be made of wood and may be one that was on display at the British Museum or perhaps the Ashmolean. See–knowledge of Stonehenge replicas can be a scholarly pursuit! If you’re not careful. Which we are. So you needn’t worry! An interesting bit of this article is where the author mentions the theory that a sacred oak once grew in the very middle of Stonehenge. We hadn’t heard that one before.

Article from The Graphic, September 2, 1922

Hengefinder Extraordinaire Glastonbury also sent us this article with pictures of a Stonehenge model made by the author, H. N-Hutchison,  which is entitled What Stonehenge Probably Looked Like when Complete. Our favourite part of this one is near the end: “For reasons which need not be given here, the writer has ventured to put a small trilithon at the entrance, and two rather larger ones, one at each end of the horseshoe, to make it complete. … This arrangement seems to giove a finish to Stonehenge...” In other words, the fellow has added parts to Stonehenge that he thinks would make it better! We have mentioned before, but so long ago at this point that probably any of you weren’t even born yet, that even those who profess to be the greatest admirers of Stonehenge cannot seem to resist making little improvements in their reproductions of it. It is as if you took a picture of the Mona Lisa and then thought, She could be prettier, couldn’t she? and changed her features to look more like Charlize Theron.

Anyway, Hutchison says that the model in the pictures is of plasticene, but he made another of wood and donated it to the British Museum. And, no, it is not the same one that’s at the bottom of the other article. Small differences are evident to the seasoned eye of the Stonehenge replica expert, that is to say, ourselves.

The article ends, “I should like to see a full-sized reconstruction of Stonehenge made in concrete and set up somewhere close to Salisbury to show visitors what this wonderful monument was like in prehistoric times; and I am sure such a model would attract visitors to the ancient town.” Obviously, we’re all for that!! (And, yes, we know that not everyone believes that Stonehenge was ever finished. We are not interested in having that discussion here.)

So thank you to Mr. Glastonbury for his help with Clonehenge through the years. At least one time we were ready to quit the blog but kept going because he kept sending us replicas to post. He told us just today that he knows of a top secret Stonehenge replica project to be implemented some time in August, and he will bring us the news as it happens. More fun to come!

Happy summer solstice, everyone! And of course, happy henging!

Rock and Roll and the Henge Fixation–Polystyrene Version!

Paul Archer and his “clonehenge”

It didn’t start with This is Spinal Tap. Rock and roll latched onto Stonehenge early on. Let’s face it–the bluestones even come from the Preseli Hills! The Elvis connection!!! In the movie Help, Stonehenge is in the background of one scene. And check out this terrible Stonehenge replica built for the Rolling Stones:

“A Stonehenge setting for pop group The Rolling Stones …”

Oh, LOL, as they used to say in the previous century! That thing wouldn’t get a good score on this blog. It does already have its own druid, though–good setting for Keith Richards! But it illustrates the point that Spinal Tap was an extension, not an initiation of the Stonehenge/rock music connection.

Enter Paul Archer and The Saints of British Rock. We have to admit that we are not certain who the Saints of British Rock are or where they originated–the States, Canada, or the UK. But the salient point here is that Mister Paul Archer, prop-maker to the stars, made a brilliant polystyrene (aka styrofoam) Stonehenge replica for their coming tour. The nice thing about polystyrene is that it is bound to last longer than the original! The article linked to here throws in the phrase “Affectionately called ‘clonehenge’ ” Haha! What a great pun!!!

They make the rock pun, too. What fun when you write about a Stonehenge replica for your first time! Oh, WTF, just for old time’s sake, why don’t we go there? The Saints have chosen well–rock doesn’t get any more British than Stonehenge! Harharhar…. Sigh. Not as funny as we hoped,

We are impressed with this replica. It is not a ful replica, but the parts he chose to do he did well. The stones are so well shaped thatone might be able to figure out what number stone each one is. (Yes, the stones of Stonehenge, like your days, are numbered.) Score:  7 druids! It should only be 6½, but rock and roll makes us all nostalgic.

Take note–this replica was made in Victoria British Columbia, the Pacific Northwest again. There must be Stonehenge mycelium in the ground there. Henges pop up like mushrooms!

Hello to any bicycle people who have dropped by! We knew you were here by the sound of your gears popping. And to the rest of our Gentle Readers, thanks for visiting, and happy henging!

PS: Was it just us who were disappointed when we weren’t asked to participate in the Queen’s Jubilee?? Yes?  An inexplicable oversight. They shouldn’t be surprised if some guerilla henges start to appear around the palace when they least expect it. They have been warned!