Some of the ideas discussed in this blog are published in my new book called "The Stonehenge Bluestones" -- due for publication on June 1st 2018. After that, it will be available by post and through good bookshops everywhere. Bad bookshops might not have it....
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Wednesday, 9 May 2012

The Great Bardic Chair Hunt -- all is revealed

Well, good for them!  Here is the latest info.  Don't expect too much accuracy.  Well, it's just a radio programme.  From the broadcast, it appears that the soldiers were heading for a "bluestone mine"  --  apparently very ancient and unique.   I wonder if they have come and gone yet, or if they are still hunting for the mine?

Very disappointed to hear that they are not hunting for bardic chairs after all in them thar hills -- just a dragon plaque presumably made from bluestone by one of the natives.........
A group of soldiers from Larkhill based 32 Regiment Royal Artillery on Salisbury Plain are making history this week, as they march 260 miles from their barracks to collect a very special stone.
It’s all linked to Stonehenge, its neighbouring town Amesbury, as well as to help raise funds for their local hospital.
Eight soldiers from 18 Quebec Battery set off from their base at Roberts Barracks on Monday (30th April), taking with them a scroll given to them by the mayor of Amesbury.
The men and woman will make their way through the West and into Wales and up to Pembrokeshire to the Preseli Hills where they will visit Carn Meini, an ancient mine located at the top of the Preseli Ridge and once there they will pick up a polished bluestone in the form of a dragon plaque to take back to the Heritage museum at Amesbury. The stone will be placed in a Bardic chair. Bluestones are the same type of stone that the ancient monument of Stonehenge is constructed from.
Click on the play button to hear from the team with BFBS's Shirley Swain.


Tony H said...

This BFBS radio station is no relation, then, to BFBO and "Two-Way Family Favourites", with Cliff Michelmore and his missus and others of their ilk? Those were the days, when Elvis Preseli was based in Germany and sang "Wooden Heart" to his 14-year-old sweetheart, Priscilla, but never paid the U.K. a visit apart from a brief stop-over at Prestwick Airport, Ayrshire. Too much information?

Bucky Edgett said...

No no no! They are going to get a Bluestone Bardic Chair. But it's not ready yet. Please go to the link posted below, and page back and forth until you see picture of the marchers receiving their plaque.

The picture is captioned "Stage one now complete and an order has been placed for a bluestone carved into a seat. The Bluestone is the same stone and came from the same location as the heal [sic] stone at Stonehenge, which the Ancestors believed had healing powers, it is incredibly heavy and there is only one mine where it can be found. 32 Regiment have walked 260 miles for Amesbury to place the order and will return to collect it when its [sic] ready."

Brian, I'm sure Amesbury's will be even better than the old beat-up one you posted on your first blog entry on this story.

I really need one for our yard, so anyone having a spare can post to me with a price for a second hand Bluestone Bardic Chair.

Anonymous said...

oh dear
They have wasted so much time.
The heal/heel stone is made of sarsen they could have just gone down the road and picked one up and be back in time for a sqaddie brunch. They are not taking advice from members of our august board?
But, if the reporting is correct and there is but one geographical location for sarsen and bluestone Brian has been vindicated-just north of SH.
I do love the capitalisation of Ancestors and Bluestone are they Important.
Must put go and put on my 'Hair'
Myris of Alexandria.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Sorry Bucky, if I got your sex wrong. Bad mistake, that.

We do seem to have a wonderfully garbled mythology here. As you say, Myris, the Heelstone is not bluestone at all. It has nothing whatsoever to do with healing. It did not come from the Preseli Hills. There is no quarry, let alone mine, in the eastern Preseli Hills. Which Ancestors are we talking about? Profs W and D? Well, they may be old, but they are hardly Ancestors.........

I continue to be mystified. What was the wording on the plaque? Will it be built into the bardic chair somehow? Where is the stone coming from? Who is doing the work? How will it be transported from Preseli to Amesbury? On rollers and rafts? Does this all come under the Official Secrets Act?

Bucky Edgett said...

I continue to be fascinated by this news story, and mightily frustrated by the wonderfully garbled reporting of it. But here's a point to consider...

According to the BFBS story posted at , the soldiers set out on Monday, April 30.

The picture of them receiving their plaque is dated May 4. ( )

If these dates are accurate, then it took 5 days (inclusive) to walk from Amesbury (Larkhill?) to something near Carn Menyn. I think! Reportage is inadequate.

Of course, modern times: good roads, sag wagon support, etc. But still...Does this little amateur exercise in experimental archaeology tell us something --albeit slight-- about the possibilties for ancient trade/communications?

Or am I just too enthusiastic about the whole wonderfully garbled story?

Oh, and...
P.S. No problems with the gender confusion. I don't know how to include my avatar with these posts! That would have helped!

Oh oh and...
P.P.S. Go to and, as of this writing, see the post on the left hand side of the page titled "Aandr Metalcraft's photo." At first I thought that was the Bardic Chair! I really need to brush up on my mythology.

BRIAN JOHN said...

Well, a group of soldiers travelling light, with vans etc providing backup, should be able to do 30 miles a day if they are fit and have good boots! So that's 5 days for 150 miles..... no problem.

Very fond of Amesbury -- had two uncles there once (Stan and Llew Stephens), who owned a big dairy. Visited quite often, back in the good old days...

chris johnson said...

If they are stuck they could take that awful bardic chair now stuck on top of Nevern Castle, although it is made of wood it might just look the part in southern England and it would have an approximate and authentic provenance.

(I don't know what the Nevern folk are doing to cut down all those wild flowers and build a kiddies playground with no parking, toilets, or even a safe access). No neolithic remains? Yeah, next! Dig deeper.

The comment from Alexandria is intriguing and I look forward to more, clearly spelt out for dumbos like me.

Brian, having re-read your book I think you should define "Bluestone". Either it means any old foreign rock, or it means a stone from Preselli, or something else. What? Capitalized or not.