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Aerial Atlas of Ancient Britain

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Breathtaking photos reveal Neolithic enclosures, cairns, and stone circles; Bronze Age villages, farmsteads, tombs, and burial mounds; and Iron Age hillforts, all captured in spectacular bird’s-eye-view detail. Photographs taken directly above the sites, often at dawn, allow uniquely informative views, showing not only how ancient monuments fit into the surrounding landscape, but also how they define or respond to the area’s natural character.

A spectacular and mesmerizing collection of aerial photographs of Britain's most extraordinary prehistoric sites. The remaining 100,000 images come from the Historic England Archive aerial photography collection, which numbers over six million images in total, and includes important historic photography, including interwar and post-war images from Aerofilms Ltd and The Royal Air Force.It will join my sadly very thin collection of similar volumes, this type of book being published only rarely. I think our ancestors wanted them to be seen from the air,’ says Abram, ‘certainly the Neolithic ones, because I believe that a lot of Neolithic monuments were about connecting what was above the ground with what’s below.

Closer to the sea there is another collection of concrete buildings for a later Centimetric Early Warning (CEW) radar that was developed in response to the Soviet Union testing of atomic weapons in 1949. Stone cairns and circles evoke lost rituals and religious ceremonies; Iron Age ramparts hint at former strongholds; and tangible geographical clues reveal the scars of real or mythical battles. Atmospheric, aerial photographs capture ancient monuments in spectacular settings, showing how the sites relate to their landscapes from a unique bird’s eye viewpoint. It looks like the man is bending over a model village until you see the brick he is laying at a dizzying height above the ground. The stunning photography enables you to see some well known and not so well known ancient sites around the British Isles with a whole new perspective.

Second World War anti-invasion measures such as anti-aircraft obstructions (ditches and earthworks) at Hampton Court Palace in 1941, and images from the same year of RAF Kenley showing camouflaged runways. Then, once you’ve worked out how to fly it, don’t just randomly go around taking the same pictures as everyone else. The oldest site in the collection was created nearly 6,000 years ago; the most recent originated shortly before the Roman invasion of Britain in AD 43. Many of Abram’s images have an abstract quality that momentarily disrupts one’s sense of perspective, allowing the shapes carved thousands of years ago to evoke an emotional resonance―an experience at once pleasurable and instructive.

There is also a disappointing Welsh bias in the volume, which would not normally offend as Welsh ancient sites are all certainly very interesting, but the problem is that this seems to be at the expense of much more important and vital Scottish and English sites - the Orkney and Shetland islands are badly under represented for example, while at the same time one feels that every single obscure bump or piece of stone in Wales has been photographed.Aerial imagery provides a fascinating insight into the development and expansion of the nation’s urban centres and changes to the rural landscape. I can't wait to discover more about my local area and encourage everyone to explore the thousands of English sites from the last century. If you’re in the EU, US, Canada, Aus or NZ please purchase my book through an independent retailer rather than one of the online giants. Informative, authoritative and educational, this site’s content covers a wide range of subject areas, including geography, culture, wildlife and exploration, illustrated with superb photography. By using the Web site, you confirm that you have read, understood, and agreed to be bound by the Terms and Conditions.

The remains of ancient archaeology such as a Neolithic long barrow near Broughton, Hampshire, as well as remains of Iron Age forts such as Pilsdon Pen in Dorset and medieval villages such as Old Sulby in Northamptonshire. The Aerial Photography Explorer joins Historic England’s recently launched Aerial Archaeology Mapping Explorer to offer an unparalleled insight into England’s archaeology and the nation’s development.

century industrial sites such as the construction of Tilbury power station in 1955, and its demolition in 2017. Because for every Stonehenge there are hundreds of thousands of sites that are completely neglected and are being damaged. This is an inspiring way to discover the beauty and history of the British landscape, revealing the visible traces of our ancestors, from such famous monuments as Stonehenge to little-known gems that have never before been seen from the air. It is a shame that people who are privileged to produce this kind of book sadly seem to be motivated by nothing more than a desire to promote their own country.

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