The Earth Element
. The Hidden Power within the Isle of Wight by Gary Biltcliff.
Written for the spring issue of
Fountain International Magazine.
The Isle of Wight is a large island in the English Channel, situated at the base of England almost half way along the south coast and separated from the mainland by a strait called The Solent. From above, the coastal outline of the island resembles a diamond, which is remarkably symmetric, one side being the mirror image of the other. A north-south river called the Medina divides the island flowing from the northern tip of the diamond at Cowes through the town of Newport; even the northern estuaries are equidistant from the centre of the island including the rivers of the Eastern and Western Yar.

Although the island is famous for its sandy beaches, holiday camps and music festivals, it has gained a reputation amongst writers as ‘Britain’s Magical Island’, because of its long history of paranormal events that include ghostly encounters, time-slips, occult practices and its legendary association with the mysterious Druids. During the research of a north-south alignment called the Belinus Line for our book ‘The Spine of Albion’, my partner and co-author Caroline Hoare and I discovered that the paranormal occurrences seemed to be activated by magnetic anomalies caused by the island’s unique geology and its fault lines. Furthermore, the power here in the land appeared to connect to the rest of Britain like a key electrical component in a circuit.

The geology of the Isle of Wight is particularly remarkable because of its unusual layering of sedimentary rocks that has gradually formed over a period of 140 million years. Some of the layers tilt almost vertically, created when immense pressures within the earth crust formed the European Alps. Brian Innes, writing in a monthly magazine called ‘The Unexplained’ back in the 1970s, drew our attention to a rare geological layer of Upper Greensand that defines a serpent-shaped ridge, which runs through the centre of the island. Greensand is a hard crystalline iron bearing sandstone otherwise known as Firestone, because of its fiery colour. Innes stated that this unusual S-shaped east- west ridge of hills that form the backbone of the island might provide a vital clue to many of 20 its ‘Fortean’ mysteries.

The ridge, also a geological fault, runs all the way from the high eminence of Bembridge Down, on the east coast near the town of Brading, to the chalk stacks called The Needles on the extreme west coast. Situated on this ridge are Ashey, Arreton Down and Carisbrooke, where the stratum curves to the southeast to Gatcombe at the centre of the island. From here it swings back to the west through Chillerton Down and Mottistone before it reaches The Needles. A fault is a fissure between two landmasses and when seismic activity occurs, the friction between the rocks creates energy. Under certain conditions, this energy will either release in the form of balls of light, or as a strong magnetic field. If this field is then subjected to additional forces such as the gravitational pull of the full moon, or solar particles from high ‘sun spot’ activity, it may cause a rip in our dimensional time and space.

Innes also mentions strange place-names associated with this serpent ridge. Above the head of the serpent at Bembridge is ‘Nodes Point’ and near its tail at The Needles is ‘The Nodes’. In astronomy, the nodes are the points where the path of the moon crosses the ecliptic or path of the sun. When the moon moves about the earth, its path across the ecliptic creates a flattened S-shape that mirrors the shape of the Greensand ridge and interestingly on the tail of the serpent is ‘Moons Hill’. Astronomers called the north node of the moon Caput Draconis or Dragon’s Head and the south node Cauda Draconis or Dragon’s tail. According to local folklore, the Druids, once the administrators of religion to the ancient Britons, resided at three sacred sanctuaries on the Isle of Wight. They include the Needles, on the tail of the serpent ridge, the megalithic Longstone near Mottistone, on the back of the serpent and the sacred Hexal Grove near Brading, at the head of the serpent.

As great astronomers and geomancers, the Druids could not have failed to notice that the backbone of the island mirrors the moon’s dragon path. For them the construction of a specific place of worship was unnecessary as the whole island represented a sacred moon temple. Some of the island’s most haunted places are on the Firestone (Upper Greensand) layer that forms the back of this serpent. Knighton Gorges for instance was once the grandest house on the isle dating back to Norman times and made particularly famous during the 18th century for its lavish and raucous New Year’s Eve parties. However, nothing visible remains of it today, due to its complete dismantlement during the Victorian period.

Nevertheless, the house continues to reappear every New Year’s Eve, including the ghostly apparitions of its former occupants, seen by many people since the time of its destruction. I believe the combination of its position on the Firestone ridge, the springs that surround it and the emotionally charged events at the house during its long and fraught history has created a ‘loop recording’ or rip in time, which psychic people can see.

Scottish historian Archie McKerracher of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland Society claims the Earth’s magnetic field can retain the memory of an ‘emotional or violent event’ that recurs and haunts the area with generated wavelengths of electromagnetic energy bearing a resemblance of a persistent bad dream. Many equate certain power centres in the land with energy vortices or ‘chakras’ in the human body and although it seems unlikely that the rocks of the earth would mirror the human body, there are some interesting comparisons to be made at certain sites along the Belinus Line. This great north-south axis and its associated male and female ‘dragon’ currents, which we named the Spine of Albion, connects the once great royal cities of Winchester, Carlisle and Dunfermline as well as the modern cities of Birmingham and 21 Manchester. If there are seven chakras in the human body, then could the Spine of Albion also have seven subtle energy centres radiating this vital power?

In ancient eastern traditions, the chakras were seen as a way of vitalising body, mind and spirit. Each one acts like a transformer, receiving and sending energy through the body for nourishment and connecting it to spirit. The Isle of Wight sits at the base of Britain like a coccyx on the human spine; even their shapes are similar. As we have found at many of the power sites on the Belinus Line, the enigmatic Isle of Wight attracts both light and dark energies. When accessing the creative life force at the base chakra, it enlivens us both physically and spiritually as we connect with the physical world of nature and our environment and strengthens our bond with Mother Earth. However, when the vital force of the base chakra is blocked and out of balance, it fails to nourish us and stops us connecting to the higher consciousness, keeping our focus purely on the physical world and allowing negative emotions to dominate our lives.

This imbalance is often caused by the neglect or abuse of our environment or through the deliberate act of dark occult ritual. We have found that by walking the great Greensand serpent-ridge and working with healing stones and love at certain sites along its back, we have helped to release and purify any detrimental energy that has built up within the cellular memory of the island. While working with these sites we connect with the trail of the Belinus Line and its powerful male and female serpents as they snake across the land.

According to mystics, the human base chakra houses a hidden force shaped like a coiled serpent called the Kundalini. As mentioned previously, the shape of the east-west spine of hills on the Isle of Wight is like that of a serpent. Mystics also say that to achieve spiritual enlightenment we must awaken this sleeping serpent through certain rituals and disciplines. The Spine of Albion has 33 key crossing places of the yin and yang dragon force that follow this alignment all the way to the top of Scotland, and there are 33 vertebrae in the human spine. Interestingly, at the foot of the alignment on the Isle of Wight, the dragons cross at only one place andthat is on the neck of the serpent ridge at a mound on Brading Down. Could this be a key place on the throat of the serpent to awaken the Kundalini force within the Spine of Britain? If so, when would be the appropriate moment to awaken this force? I believe that those with love in their hearts and who carry the dream of our ancestors of a harmonious world will come together at the right place, day and time to awaken the grail.

         The words of Barry Brailsford often inspire us, a man given a mission by the Maori to heal the lands of New Zealand and reawaken the old spirit paths of the ancients:

“As we walk between these sites, we carry the dream of the world we want to see because we are embodying timeless wisdom from the past that sought a compassionate just world for all.                    This inspires us to find the change we need to shape within ourselves anew way of being. With the power of love, we need to be the dream makers and the pathfinders.”

Visit Gary Biltcliffe’s website:
The spine of Albion is published by Sacred Lands Publishing.