A crucial part of folk horror is the uncanny landscape–the landscape that exerts a strange power over humans. The land–the earth, trees, plant life, rocks–acts upon the beings that inhabit it, diminishing human agency in exerting its own. It makes manifest that we are far from alone in being able to act on other beings and other things.

This post, updated daily, will offer some of the uncanny landscapes of England.

Day 1: The King’s Men, part of the Rollright Stones, near Long Compton in Oxfordshire, a stone circle of the late Neolithic or early Bronze Age.

 

The Rollright Stones were the setting for the third serial of the sixteenth season of Dr. Who, The Stones of Blood, broadcast from October 28 – November 18, 1978. The plot of this serial is clearly influenced by late 70s folk horror, notably Children of the Stones, set in Avebury and broadcast in the winter of 1977. Both serials present stones that exert a strange power, a power linked both to a human prehistory and an alien presence, but also to the uncanny force of the stones themselves.