Controversy arises over ancient stone site

The controversy over Ale's Stones (Ales stenar), a sandstone monument in the form of a ship, in Skåne in southern Sweden has taken a new turn.

The county administrative board has taken a decision to charge amateur archeaologist Bob G. Lind a fine of 20,000 kronor per day if he puts up signs at the popular tourist destination, reports Skånska Dagbladet newspaper.

Lind’s previous signs at Ale’s Stones, which has been called the “Stonehenge of the Nordic region”, have been removed by the county board. They describe Lind’s theories about the origins of the monument, which differ from those of professional archaeologists.

Officials said that Lind’s signs “destroyed the experience” of the monument. Ystad municipality has replaced Lind’s signs with their own portable signs and brochures during their free tours, which are offered four times a day during the summer.

Lind is furious. “This has become a public vendetta. They made a hasty decision when they took down the signs,” he told Skånska Dagbladet.

The stone ship is thought to be from the Stone Age and remained in use until the Iron Age. Its purpose – whether a site of cult worship or a solar calendar – is a subject of much debate.

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