The Jamie Poole Books series is a collection of books that fall under the category ‘fantasy’ or ‘science fiction’ or perhaps ‘historical fiction.’ They are not intended as ‘historical’ books, writing and documenting all things factual.
However, having stated that, a lot of care and effort is taken to ensure scientific and historical information is presented accurately whenever is possible. Jamie Poole Books includes time travel and presents historical events set in the past. Historical figures are referenced. Scientific theories such as those of Einstein are mentioned. They are presented with much care for accuracy.
Imagine even my surprise when I read a blog from the Stonehenge News and information which referenced the same information as I presented last week:
This references the work of a man named Richard Atkinson in the 1950s. (See blog link above.) The blog shows many pictures of his work. While Atkinson did a lot of the initial restoration and study of Stonehenge, his work and the work of others who came before him did not accurately interpret all the archaeological findings of Stonehenge. Put simply, they didn’t have all the equipment and scientific knowledge archaeologists do today. That is why new things still turn up at places like Stonehenge. Recent discoveries here and on the Orkney Islands, to cite two examples, reveal new information that still requires review to properly assess and understand how the information presents the past from which we all descend.
However, the blog also goes to show that art and life often overlap in surprising ways. There are many times when I’m writing a Jamie Poole story that I will see something or read something that I had just committed to the books.
It would appear this blog explains something of the same curious revelation. The article discusses a series of tunnels recently (re)discovered under Stonehenge. It’s probable Atkinson and other scientists knew of them but never explained the full discovery. The tunnels were capped. The blog states:
The six entrances to it are clearly visible in the recent geophysical survey, arranged as a squashed hexagon with linking corridors between them, leading to the antechamber located below the North Barrow and the main room directly below the stone circle.
Col. William Hawley’s excavations of 1926 revealed the existence of the entrances and corridors, but he didn’t investigate further as he was already in his mid-70s and had been abandoned by the workers assigned to assist him.
The records of this discovery existed only in Hawley’s personal notebooks, which lay unexamined until the mid 1950s.
In 1958, under the pretext of re-erecting a collapsed Trilithon, Richard Atkinson’s team made extensive excavations in the centre of the circle in an attempt to break through to the main room after the route via the antechamber was discovered to be blocked by a massive sarsen stone.
Very few photographs exist of what was found once the chalk capping of the main chamber had been breached, but Atkinson’s archive was badly catalogued so it has been difficult to attribute photos to positions with any kind of accuracy.
Atkinson never published what he found…
The six entrances were left unsealed but capped with metal covers at ground level – these can easily be found in the grass – and once a year there is a stress test of the concrete infill to ensure no subsidence or cracking has occurred. This is achieved by pumping chemical smoke in at one entrance and checking for leaks at each of the other five.
Bizarrely, there was a Doctor Who episode filmed at Stonehenge in 2010 entitled “The Pandorica Opens” that used the idea of an “Underhenge” beneath the monument.
Perhaps someone on the production or writing team had some inside knowledge of what really lies beneath. The rest of us will never know for sure.
(Thanks to local historian Simon Banton for sharing this ground breaking story.)
Who is to say what will happen next with this revelation. It should be exciting to continue to learn new things about an important place. I will be watching for future articles. Much like the Jamie Poole Books, art can’t help sometimes when it imitates life. After all, when we write, we use life as our guide.