Now that I knew what to do my only concern was to find the right springs, but I needn't have worried, always I am being guided, and the places I am drawn to are usually the places I am meant to be.
My first destination was Rowl Spring on the North York Moors near Levisham. Old and abandoned it lay buried in ramsons and bluebells.
I placed a crystal in the water, blessed it and took a sample of the water in a glass bottle. Suddenly a hoverfly buzzed up to me and sat suspended in the air just in front of me, as it lingered there I tuned in to see if it had a message for me. I received guidance then to visit a chalybeate (iron rich) spring to the north. After some searching and false leads I eventually found myself hiking along the gully of the Havern Beck towards Newton Dale. There I found a tiny little spring in the wall of the gulley. I cleared away the vegetation that hid it and placed a crystal deep in its recesses. I then sipped a cup of the water and a strange otherworldly feeling came over me.
I then continued down the Havern Beck in a slight daze, past a dripping black wall of rock which I named the "Dwarf Door". It felt like an entrance to the Otherworld but my guidance told me not to investigate it further. The whole gulley seemed strange and otherworldly somehow, pleasant and natural to look at but somehow sinister. I meditated in a small rock shelter there above a high waterfall but my guides told me to move on.
Eventually I came to the end of the gully and some water meadows. I entered Newton Dale and crossed the tracks of the North York Moors Railway before hiking up a promontory on the other side known as the Needle Eye. A tiny trackway led to Newtondale Spring, a magical hidden place where a constantly flowing stream of water issues forth from the earth over stone steps stained red by the iron-rich water.
I spent a long time tidying up this spring as it had become clogged up with mud, leaves and detritus, my bare feet waded through the thick red sludge as I cleared away a channel for the bright clear water. I waded right up to the source of the spring and placed a crystal deep behind one of the steps before energising it.
I tuned in to get more information and a pattern was now emerging. These springs seemed to have water spirits (nymphs) associated with them, who appreciated their springs being tidied up and looked after. These springs carry a certain energy or vibration which I am amplifying with my crystals. This amplified energy is then carried downstream throughout the entire river system. The energy penetrates the land and affects all those who live there and drink from the water. This new vibration will raise the consciousness of the people, awaken them from their slumber, cause them to question their ways of being and their current beliefs. This is all part of the return of the Fae energy to Earth.
I decided to fill a bottle with this water too. Perhaps it will come in useful sometime? I left an offering of honey there in a scallop shell and gave thanks. By giving this place an air of sacredness my wish was that future visitors would treat this place with the respect that it deserves and feel its magical energy. It was truly was magical there and I wished I could have stayed longer, but dusk was falling and I still had to make it back to my car through the long gully.
Now I was on a roll, so the next day I headed to Old Wive's Well. It is hidden in the trees near a country lane but not easy to find. I parked in layby in the remote lane and followed a barely visible track into the trees until I came to a small clearing. Ribbons tied to some of the trees indicated that this place was still revered as a sacred site.
The water in the well was crystal clear but didn't seem to be flowing at this time. It didn't seem right to energise stagnant water so I took some of the water into a bottle and placed a crystal in the bottle to cleanse it. I then got the message to take the bottle to Brown Howe. I left an offering in a scallop shell that was already provided there and then drove over to Brown Howe which lay in the forest nearby.
Upon arriving I discovered that the howe no longer existed and had been levelled by a local farmer, but I got the farmer to show me the spot nonetheless and took the bottle with me.
There is local folklore associated with Brown Howe which states:
"To the west of Brown Howe and standing by a boulder there be seen of a summer's eve a maiden there seated a-combing out her jet black tresses so as to hide her bare breast and shoulders, she looking to be much shamed to there do her toilet."
I asked the farmer if he knew of any stories associated with the place but he could only relate that archaeologists had found a jade necklace nearby. I drove away from the farm, parked up nearby and decided to take a shamanic journey to see what I can find out about this place.
I saw myself kneeling down by Old Wive's Well. In my hand was a chalice containing the well water and a crystal. Others are there kneeling around the well with me also holding chalices. Next we are standing around Brown Howe holding our chalices. A great black hole opens up in the ground where the howe used to be. Spirits fly out of the hole and then I dive forward into the blackness. I am transported to another world where a beautiful naked woman is lying on a rock. She is combing her long silky black hair and wearing a jade necklace. She removes her necklace and places it around my neck instead. I see myself staring into a pool, the jade necklace around my neck is visible in the reflection. It is the spring near Obtrush Roque! ( see Obtrush Roque - The Hobgoblin's Cairn )
It was a convoluted way of getting to the point, but seemingly I should place a crystal there too!
I then meet with some of my spirit guides to try to get to know them better, a dirty little 'nut boy', a winged fairy, a lady with a crown of flames and a mermaid. Earth, air, fire and water! I greet them each in turn, my guides and protectors.
The next day I go looking for another spring called Old Man's Mouth. I park in a public car park nearby but somehow manage to miss the spring and end up climbing through the woods until I find another, less well-known spring which is completely overgrown and clogged up. I spend about an hour digging it out with my bare hands. I discover pans and some square stone blocks which people likely used to sit on, but eventually I make it down to where the trickle of water actually bubbles from the earth through small pebbles.
I dig out some of the pebbles and place a crystal deep down in the source of the spring before replacing the pebbles again. I head back down to the car park, exhausted and then I spot it! The Old Man's Mouth!
How did I miss it? Closer inspection reveals though that it's not actually a spring, but is the outflow of a small rivulet, so there's nothing there for me to energise.
Following my guidance the next day I head for the spring near Obtrush Roque that I had seen in my vision. I arrive there in the afternoon but before I can focus on the spring I hear the pathetic bleating of a sheep in the woods nearby. The sheep must have broken out of her field and now seems to be lost, so I open the gate and chase her into the field. She immediately begins munching on the fresh grass, so at least now she won't starve!
I don't waste any more time so I lift a slab to reveal the inflow of the spring and place a crystal deep inside. I then kneel down and stare into the stone basin.
I see myself as the horned god, with small antlers like the ones I had found in Stoke Wood. I am muscular and strong, with a mossy leotard hanging off one shoulder giving me the appearance of Hercules. I am standing by a giant tree with a tall elf-maiden, her skin is smooth and green like that of a frog. We step inside the bark and climb up high into the branches of the tree and gaze out over a strange and alien land.
I am back in my body again gazing into the pool, but I feel like there's more to discover so I stare some more...
Again I am the horned god, lord of the wildwood. I am standing alone in a clearing in the forest, but slowly animals start to arrive. First a boar, then and owl, then a horse, and then a lone wolf lurking in the shadows. Soon more animals appear: badgers, deer, foxes, weasels, voles and shrews, all the denizens of the forest. They are soon followed by stranger animals; bears, aurochs and big cats, animals that are now extinct in our land. And finally swarms of insects of every conceivable variety. They gather in a circle around me. I am the Lord of Animals!
Afterwards I feel strange and spaced out, like I can still feel the horns growing from my skull.
A few days later I returned to the Lady Keld springs at Cropton (see Cropton - Water Nymphs of the Lady Keld Spring ) now transformed from winter's chill to the full bloom of spring. But first I explored the area near the old motte where I had previously sensed a Fae energy. Using my dowsing rods to guide me I discovered a hidden glade inside a dense thicket of hawthorn, very close to the motte itself. There was space inside there for a dozen or so people to gather in a circle.
I tuned in and had a vision of travelling elves gathered there. A large crystal stood in the centre of the clearing and the elves stood around it, each carrying a crystal-tipped wand which they used to direct energy at the crystal in the centre. I felt myself standing by the crystal, tiny and insignificant, but then I rose up and became Aurvandil, a powerful elf-lord with crystal-tipped wand and blue teardrop necklace. Somehow I am connected to these beings, I am one of them! I then have a vision of a portal elsewhere in the field, a fairy ring, a circular patch of grass that these beings use on odd occasions to travel between our world and theirs.
I searched the small hidden glade and found among the leaves, twigs and rabbit skulls I found an ancient freshwater oyster shell, left here by the Fae long ago. I took it with me, unsure yet as to its purpose.
I continued through the woods and made my way back over the barbwire fence that leads to the springs. The waters flowed fast and clear in winter but now in spring the whole gully seemed like one big marsh. I found a very green area of high energy with a little rivulet flowing through it and placed my crystal there.
Immediately the white light started to emanate from the many tiny springs, filling the whole gully with its light. This is different, there are many power centres here, and with one act I seem to have activated all of them! What a magical experience!
A couple of days later I headed for another spring, this one known as Diana's Well or Castaway Well, near East Witton. Now hidden in a private forest the water spews forth from a carved stone head.
While next to that has been built a little well-house and grotto.
At the back of the well-house I find a basin with clear fresh water flowing through it.
I placed an energised crystal deep into the inflow and then drank three cups of the water, taking three sips each time, 3 x 3.
I sat down by the stone table and immediately an otherworldly feeling came over me. Words came to my lips:
"Spirit of the well
I summon thee forth
You are needed here again
We ask for the spirit of your holy waters"
I then began a long channelling, as if the spirit of the water nymph were speaking through me. It's a long, deep and eloquent speech, but unfortunately I had no way of recording it and could remember afterwards only the main gist of it as follows:
- You know who you can trust. Trust in yourself most of all.
- The world is full of darkness, but while there is light there is hope. Light can spread like wildfire. That is why the darkness is so afraid.
- Gather the lightworkers around you. Spread the word.
- The holy wells are being awakened. People should drink from them and take on the new consciousness they contain.
- Dress in white. Gather other lightworkers around you. Promote the holy wells. Cause people to drink their waters. This will bring down a new consciousness to earth, a new light in the darkness, a light that will spread.
- You are safe here by Diana's Well and the problems of the outside world will seem far away while you recuperate here.
I felt like I was my real self in there, a pure shining being with no worries or concerns, calm and laid-back. The place was a retreat! A retreat from the greed and destruction that is consuming our world.
But I was not done yet! I visited a couple more springs that day before making my way to the Fairy Well near Harmby.
The well sat on the slope of a grassy field where locals often walked their dogs, and it was overlooked by some blossoming hawthorn trees.
I rooted through boulders until I found the source of the spring and then placed my crystal deep inside. Clearly this place had lost some of its ancient magic and needed revitalising. I invited the fairies back in here and manifested some magical happenings to spark the interest of the locals again and reawaken the mystical properties of the place.
A couple of days later I travelled with my friend Elizabeth to find more springs. As on previous days I found a couple of springs that turned out to be unsuitable for energising, but eventually we made our way to the village of Hackness and crossed a field of bullocks to find St. Hilda's Spring, hidden in the edge of the forest.
We came to a large pool that looked clear and unpolluted, though rather clogged with fallen branches.
A concrete sump had been built in the centre of the pool, out of which flowed a descent volume of water which roared as it emerged from the far side of the pathway. Well if water is leaving the pool then it must be entering somewhere! I could see water trickling into the pond on the far side, so there was nothing for it but to wade in and take a closer look! In the far left corner I found the main inflow. The moss around the spring had turned to stone, so clearly this water had petrifying properties.
I placed my crystal, energised the water, and then drank it directly from its source, three cups of three sips. I was then told that I should return here at a later date.
That evening I felt completely drained and exhausted. A feeling I had felt many times after energising these sacred springs. Was this work draining my energy? Or was it just the icy cold chill of the water?
A few days later I was heading for another spring! This time it was Waterhouse Well at Rosedale Abbey. This well, which was once used by the monks of the abbey, was now located in a caravan park, but still sat in its old purpose-built well-house.
I cleared out lots of rubbish and detritus that had collected in there and then sat down by the clear, fresh spring inside.
I placed a crystal deep inside the spring and then tuned in to the energies there. But this time I got a surprise! A felt a small imp shot out of the well and enter my body! I shuddered and opened my eyes. I had made a mistake this time! I had gotten lazy and didn't check first to see if this was one of the springs I should be energising. I tried to move the imp on, but he was stuck there inside me. Still, I had probably done a good thing by removing the imp from the well, but that was not my task...
I took back my crystal as it felt like it was not meant to be there, and then set off to explore the rest of Rosedale. I drove right up to the end and then took an ancient trackway back down the far side of the valley through many lush green fields and old gateways.
I finally arrived at the quaint little village of Thorgill on the far side of the valley, bright with spring flowers and lush gardens. I followed the little beck upstream up through the gill until I reached its source, high on the moors above at Thorgill Head. After much searching I found a place where the water emerged directly from the earth, gushing forth in a steady stream. Relieved I placed my crystal there and energised it, and then watched as the energy flowed down from the high moor, through the gill and into the populated valley below.
As I strode back down through the gill I enjoyed the evening sunlight, the occasional startled deer and the sound of a cuckoo before it was mobbed by a couple of crows.
The next few days I seemed to lose my way somewhat, unsure of what to do next. Relationships with friends were becoming strained and I seemed to be making bad decisions. Somehow I had gotten off track. I decided to head down to Glastonbury for some spiritual healing but on the way I felt so stressed I had to stop and go out for a walk in nature. I was by a place called Alvecote Pools near Tamworth and so I wandered by the lakes in daze until I came to some ancient and twisted willow trees. I hugged the trees and connected with Pan and the nature spirits. All my problems seemed to bubble up inside my head, they were just waiting to be released! I took out a purple crystal which I used for just this purpose and there I started my releasements.
Releasing the need for gods, masters and mentors made me realise that we have no real tasks here on Earth other than the ones which we set for ourselves. We are all just pure essence of being, and by releasing all our fears, needs and desires we hope to return to that pure state of being, free from our own ego. I needed to just accept things as they were without the need to try to influence others. I AM. YOU ARE. IT IS. That's all we need to know really.
Walking back I noticed the true beauty of the place. Willow trees hung over the shimmering water, birds sang in every tree, squirrels skipped, hares ran, ducks and grebes swam contentedly on the lake, clouds of insects danced in the evening light and woodpecker chicks cheeped loudly from a crack in a tree as their mother flew back and forth to feed them.
Rob Wildwood (Aurvandil) has now released a book containing hundreds of his own stunning full colour photos of many of the magical places he has visited in his travels. The images capture the magic and mystery of each place and are enhanced by extracts of local folklore that reveal the magical lore of each place and tempt deeper investigation. Every site listed has full directions and map grid references that can be checked online, so join Rob Wildwood as you discover Britain's magical places at www.themagicalplaces.com