The surprising and the surreal have become the stock-in-trade of a site visit by the Tamar Dowsers. The welcome, if somewhat untypical, blazing sunshine of a mid- September evening in England was just the first indication that unexpected phenomena were about to be encountered.
The intriguingly well-preserved wall footings of Penhallam House - formerly home of the Di Cardinham family - lie incongruously concealed in a wooded glade near Week St. Mary. This final stage of the building’s history commenced (according to the English Heritage notice board) in the 13th century. It dowsed as still being occupied in some form into the 1700s. However, a previous building on the site dowsed as early as 1100 - contemporary with a Domesday Book record of a neighbouring farm. A first use of the site appeared to go back over 2000 years.
We found the well and the hearths, discovered at least 3 leys crossing the site, a number of earth energy lines and two vibrant energy spirals - one in the middle of the main hall and the other seemingly occupying the whole of the little chapel. The altar of the chapel was marked by a water line as tightly as if it had been drawn with a blue pencil on a site plan.
In one corner of the hall was a trademark TD mystery. Peggy, Ruth and myself found our rods engaging helicopter mode, and it was clearly time to call in the serious visualisers. Both Jacki and John sensed a lady working intently, perhaps sewing or embroidering, in a sunny corner. Whether she sat there intuitively in the powerful energy, attracted it to her by her work, or left it behind with her entity was a line of enquiry for another day.
An additional brush with the bizarre came with the unmistakeable sound of crystal clear church bells, in this otherwise uninhabited and densely wooded valley. These proved to be coming from Week St Mary, some 2 or 3 miles distant - but the impact of these ancient vibrations in such an energetic environment was particularly strong.
We adjourned to Lynn’s home to mull over our findings, only to discover further dowsing opportunities in a farmhouse built around two intersecting ley lines, and with its own well. After all this excitement, we were in need of recharging - and Lynn’s refreshments were much appreciated.
We only scratched the surface on this first visit to Penhallam and a further foray, both to the manor site and the other farm nearby, the one mentioned in the Domesday Book, would certainly be a valuable experience.
Cautionary note to any freelance dowsers visiting the Penhallam site - hold on tight to your rods - but expect the unexpected!