Ten years ago I was coming up to my 40th birthday and trying to decide how to mark this occasion, I decided that I would try and visit 40 stone circles. Obviously I had left it a bit late to complete before I was 40, I don’t think even then I seriously thought I could do all 40 in one year either – not unless I gave up work for six months and travelled around the country in a campervan (how I would have loved that!). I even wondered if there were as many as 40 stone circles in the UK (ah, how naive!). As I had a couple of holidays coming up, including one in the Outer Hebrides I decided I would start before I turned 40 (perhaps I did think I could do it in a year?), and so began a journey that ten years later I am still on. A couple of years ago, after passing the original target of 40 I thought it would actually be good to visit 50 before I turned 50, and on 30th April this year (2019) I reached this new target. It has taken me longer than I thought it would but basically this is because life most definitely got in the way, with the natural peaks and troughs that ensue, including deaths, marriages, house moves and cats.
We’ve been to Cornwall, Devon, Isle of Lewis, Cumbria, Somerset, Wiltshire, Peak District, Dumfries & Galloway, and around Wales. There are some notable absences including Orkney (on the wish list!). At each circle we took a photo of me holding a chalk board showing its name and number in my quest. I did brief sketches at nearly every circle, and came to learn my own personal way of greeting these monuments. I want to write up my experiences, catalogue these ancient sites in my own way, and offer the results up to the world. One of my ‘Wednesday’ projects waiting in the wings to get going.
And of course I’m not going to stop now! Here’s to the next 50!