Monthly Archives: October 2015

PASt Explorers: Finds recording in the local community, London conference

PASt Explorers: Finds recording in the local community, London conference

The Portable Antiquities Scheme’s 2015 conference celebrates the launch of PASt Explorers, the Scheme’s five year Heritage Lottery Funded project to recruit and train volunteers from local communities, increasing the capacity of the PAS to record archaeological objects found by members of the public.

This conference aims to illustrate how volunteers have contributed to archaeological knowledge, and asks how we can better demonstrate the impact and celebrate the value of involving volunteers in archaeology on individuals and society as well as understanding our
shared past.
Refreshments (tea/coffee) will be provided free of charge. Lunch can be purchased from one of a selection of restaurants and cafés in and around the British Museum. The conference takes place in the BP lecture theatre at the British Museum on Monday 23rd November 2015.
Admission to the conference is free but advance booking is essential. Places can be reserved on the Eventbrite webpage or call Clemency Cooper on 02073 238293. Registration closes at 12:00 noon on Friday 20th
November 2015.

See the attached flyer and programme for further information

A History of Peatlands

Thanks to a grant of £9,900 from the Heritage Lottery Fund, the AONB Partnership will be undertaking a project, called Peatland People, to document the methods of managing the land and how it has changed over the years.

No official record has been made about the people who have played a part in shaping the landscape of the North Pennines and Alistair Lockett, Field Officer with the AONB Partnership, said he hopes this project will keep important information about moorland practices from being lost forever.

He said: “We’d like to speak to a range of people who have all played their part in shaping this diverse landscape. I’m hoping a range of people will come forward to share their memories with us, including farmers, conservationists, gamekeepers and landowners.”

People who have worked on the moorlands in various different ways, or have families who have a strong link to the landscape of the North Pennines, are being encouraged to visit one of the three special drop-in sessions that have been arranged by the AONB Partnership.

Alistair said: “Once all the information has been collected, we plan to bring it together and showcase it in an exhibition that will be held at Bowlees Visitor Centre in Teesdale.

“Through Peatland People we want to celebrate this incredibly important landscape and understand more about how generations of people have brought it about. The special qualities of well-managed peatlands have important environmental benefits, for people and for wildlife. It’s a landscape people often take for granted but in reality it takes a huge amount of time and effort to conserve and enhance it.”

For more information contact Alistair Lockett on 01388 528801 or email


Do you live in East Fellside? If so…. read on….

Do you live in or around Castle Carrock, Newbiggin, Cumrew, Ainstable, Cumwhitton, Talkin, Hayton, Farlam, Hallbankgate, Midgeholme, Tindale, Kirkoswald, Renwick, Croglin, Gamblesby, Glassonby, Melmerby or Brampton? Or are you part of a special interest or volunteer group in those parishes? The early stages of a Heritage Lottery Funded bid is being developed in your area and is looking for interested local people with exciting ideas for projects.

What’s special about your local landscape? Projects could cover enhancement and celebration of nature conservation, historic buildings, cultural history and traditions, access, environmental education, nature and cultural based tourism, small scale sustainability issues and heritage skills training.

If you have any ideas to discuss, you know of a local group that might be interested in being involved, or would like to be put on our project mailing list to be kept up to date with future developments, please contact Katharine Birdsall on 01388 528801 or email


How the Victorians Restored Old Churches

Ever wondered how the Victorians did restore old churches?  Then perhaps this talk is for you!

The Friends of St Cuthbert’s Church, Darlington, on the 150th anniversary of the restoration of St Cuthbert’s by George Gilbert Scott, will be welcoming the author and broadcaster John Grundy who will give an illustrated talk on:

How the Victorians Restored Old Churches

7.30 pm Tuesday 20th October in St. Cuthbert’s Church, Market Place, Darlington

Free to members

Visitors £5 (to include a glass of wine)

All Welcome


Places of Power and the Making of Early Medieval Kingdoms: New Archaeological Perspectives from Lyminge, Kent

Places of Power and the Making of Early Medieval Kingdoms: New Archaeological Perspectives from Lyminge, Kent

20th October 2015, 17:30, Learning Centre, Palace Green Library, the speaker is Dr Gabor Thomas of the University of Reading

This lecture is followed by a drinks reception at the Cafe, Palace Green Library.

Please note that places are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis. To book a place visit:

 Abstract: This paper reflects upon the results of a major scheme of excavation targeting Anglo-Saxon settlement remains preserved beneath the modern village of Lyminge, Kent, led by the University of Reading and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. Encapsulating the detailed examination of a seventh-century ‘great hall’ complex and the outer zones of a documented monastic foundation, these investigations have furnished one of the richest developmental accounts of a royal centre in Anglo-Saxon England. This paper will examine Lyminge’s trajectory as an Anglo-Saxon settlement over the fifth-ninth centuries A.D. and consider its implications for wider interpretations of early medieval kingship and power.

Gabor Thomas is Associate Professor in Early Medieval Archaeology at the Department of Archaeology, University of Reading. He has varied interests in the material culture and settlement archaeology of the early medieval period and is well known both as a field director and an expert in later Anglo-Saxon and Viking-age metalwork, the subject of his PhD at UCL. Previous to Lyminge, he completed a major excavation at the later Anglo-Saxon settlement at Bishopstone, Sussex, published by the Council for British Archaeology in 2010.


Contact for more information about this event.



Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham & Northumberland: This Saturday!


The next lecture is on Saturday 17 October, when Richard Annis will be talking about “The Tyne Brewery Site, Newcastle: beer, industry and moral turpitude”

 The closure of the Tyne Brewery in 2005 marked the end of over 120 years of beer-making at the same spot on the west side of Newcastle. Well outside the medieval town wall and far from the Roman centre, the site might seem to be of little archaeological interest. Not so: investigation and recording work carried out by Archaeological Services before, during and after the clearance of the site has revealed a great deal of interest in the different uses this land has had. This talk will look at the extraordinary growth of the brewing business that gave the world Newcastle Brown Ale, as well as revealing what was found of the earlier industrial and social history of this part of the city.


For further information on the lecture see this lecture poster


More details about the group and its activities can be found at:

North Gare Heritage Workshop: this weekend

North Gare Heritage Workshop: this weekend

Tees Archaeology will be helping to run a day of workshops exploring the heritage of the North Gare area between Seaton Carew and the River Tees on Sunday 18th October (10.00am-3.30pm).

The workshop will be held at the Teesmouth Field Centre at the EDF Power Station Visitor Centre.

The day will be split into two parts. In the morning people will be introduced to a range of historical sources of information about the area and take part in a series of exercises to reveal what this tells us about the local heritage. The sources used will include maps and aerial photographs along with historical and archaeological information about the area.

In the afternoon there will be a guided visit to the North Gare to look at features ranging in date from the medieval period to the Second World War.

The workshop is free but prior booking is essential. Please call 01429 853325 to reserve a place.

Please note this is a repeat of a workshop held in May 2015, for further information see :


Gifts for the Gods: Animal Mummies Revealed Lecture

Friends of the Oriental Museum Lecture Series 2015/16 in association with the North East Ancient Egypt Society are holding a joint lecture:

Gifts for the Gods: Animal Mummies Revealed, a lecture by Dr Campbell Price of Manchester Museum will take place on Wednesday 4 November 2015, 7.30pm, in Lecture Room 9, Elvet Hill House (Adjacent to the Oriental Museum), Durham.

See the attached poster for more details

Hadrian’s Wall Archaeology Forum 2015

Hadrian’s Wall Archaeology Forum 2015

The Hadrian’s Wall Archaeology Forum is an annual day-conference featuring talks for the general public about new discoveries in the Hadrian’s Wall frontier zone including the Cumbrian coast. This year’s programme features talks on excavation projects at Maryport, Vindolanda, Wallsend, South Shields and Binchester.

This year the event will take place on the 28th November at Queen’s Hall, Hexham, For booking detail see:


Durham World Heritage Site Architecture and Conservation Series: October Lecture

Please see the message below regarding the next World Heritage Architecture and Conservation Series Lecture:

Dear all,                                                                                             
Please find below the details of our Architecture and Conservation Series lecture for October.
I very much hope you will be able to attend.
World Heritage Site Architecture and Conservation Series 2015
October Lecture
Wednesday 21st October 2015, 6.30pm
Venue: Room PG20 Pemberton Building, Palace Green, Durham
“The Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site”

Among the first group of designations in Britain were Durham and the Ironbridge Gorge, the latter being the first industrial site in a country that set in train the Industrial Revolution which heralded the modern world. David de Haan, one of the retired Directors at the Ironbridge Gorge Museum, will look at the World Heritage Site, what was there and how the area was restored. The lecture will present the history, the decline and dereliction that preceded the restoration, and the interpretation and conservation that made possible the WHS nomination. It will also look at the management issues and the visitor profile so that parallels can be drawn.
David is a museum professional with 45 years’ experience, including 8 years at the Science Museum in London and 34 at the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, where he still works as a volunteer. He managed the Ironbridge Institute’s Heritage Management programme from 1998 and the Museums Management programme from 2001 until his retirement in 2012. He was also responsible for the restoration, interpretation and management of many of the museum sites in Ironbridge. A past Fellow of the Museums Association, past Council Member of the Newcomen Society, and Honorary Secretary of the Association for Industrial Archaeology, David is an acknowledged expert on the Iron Bridge, the 1851 Exhibition and the Art of the Industrial Revolution.
The talk will be followed by a drinks reception in the World Heritage Site Visitor Centre.
Please book your place by writing to Raffaella Aliprandi at
Would you also let me know whether or not you will be attending the reception afterwards, for catering purposes. 
Please don’t forget to circulate this email to whoever you think might be interested. 
I am looking forward to seeing you at the lecture.
Kind regards, 
Raffaella Aliprandi
Architecture and Conservation Series Organiser