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23 June 2009, JellyBean @ 8:59 am

“Druids began their incantations, Wiccan priestesses drew their cowls tight against the damp morning air and four half-naked Papuan dancers waved their hands in the air and went: “Woo, woo, woo”.”
A record 36,500 people descended on Salisbury Plain for this years summer solstice celebration at the ancient Stonehenge complex. The solstice has attracted larger numbers every year since the stones were reopened to the public in 2000; despite the lack of planned entertainement.

Dave Batchelor, English Heritage’s Stonehenge-based archaeologist, said: “We were expecting a large turnout because of the forecast and the fact it falls on a weekend this year so more people can get here.

“We got the maximum number we had planned for so the infrastructure was able to cope.”

In stark contrast, Wiltshire Police’s new aerial drone made its debut, sweeping back and forth, lights flashing, as it filmed the crowds from a few hundred feet in the air.

Denise Richards from Cradley Heath W. Mids who attended the event said:

“I went on Saturday with my partner for the 3rd time. This time I took my niece along (it was her first solstice), we all had a great time, the atmosphere was amazing, she couldn’t believe that with all those people, drums, etc it still had such a peacefull feeling.”

Read more:

The Times Online: Record crowds at Stonehenge for summer solstice celebrations

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