Tag Archives: TAS

CBA North: March News

CBA North News

Dear Members and Friends of CBA North,

This issue’s theme seems to be numbers as you will see for various reasons.

The first two months of the year, even with an extra day last month to play, enjoy and work with, have now gone. There are a number of additions to our previous events listings from three of our group members the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland – the ‘Arch & Arch’, Coquetdale Community Archaeology and the Teesside Archaeological Society. (Other group’s events from outside the CBA North network have also been included). All are now in the revised Events page of our website if they are regular happenings.

March’s events start soon – and hopefully third time lucky for the appearance of Tony Wilmott at the BAS meeting this evening – with Whitby Abbey: 30 years of new research. This event was listed at the start of the year, as it has been previously but those of you in the north of the region will know why the hope as well!

However a pair of articles also review meetings previously announced in the CBA North emails to you last year. This come from Elsa Price, of Tullie House Museum in Carlisle, and Kate Sharpe whose conference we gave a grant to support last year and Maureen Norrie, the Editor of the Teesside Archaeological Society (TAS), who describes the Elgee Memorial Lecture at Middlesbrough. Kira-May Charley who many of you will know already for TAS now become Deputy Chair of the group and represents the group at CBA North Committee as part of the local-regional network also being involved in making this happen.

As part of regional-national network, CBA North is one of a number of CBA regional groups. Indeed we were originally numbered (rather than named) regions across the country. Some of you may remember us as CBA Group 3. Claire Corkill and James Rose, both of CBA National, have written to update of what coming out the 2018 survey and workshops held during March 2019 as well as the preliminary findings from the survey we carried in our last issue – wherein plenty number-crunching has been carried out.

The annual Durham Archaeology Day is close at hand, and details of that day are below. As last year CBA North will have a stall there with Committee members present, so please come along, say “Hello!” and give us your views and feedback on how we are doing for you. (We might even have some bargain books for you for sale there).

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee
01.03.2020

2020 Local Society and Group Events – further additions
Some 11 further events have been added since our last email to you in our list of local society and group events, which in turn added to the start of the year listing. These come from a number of sources, including groups inside and outside of the CBA North network.

There are now something like 90 events for 2020 listed. Please continue to let us know any additions and/or alterations for the Events as well as any changes in the details for the Local societies and groups page.

Whilst not all the titles and speakers have been confirmed in these new additions, some have dates that have been confirmed, so put them into your diary now. Here is another consolidated block of those ‘new’ dates, organised by date, which you can also print and ‘patch’ over your earlier printouts.

2 March – Prehistoric Sites nearby Duddo Stones and Roughting Linn, Allan Colman [Bowsden Heritage Group]
14 March – CAREing for rock art in the UK and Ireland, Myra Gisen [ARCH & ARCH]
8 April – AGM and Recent developments in Iron Age archaeology in the North-East, Richard Carlton [TILLVAS]
18 July – Festival of Archaeology lecture: St Godric and Finchale Priory, Margaret Coombes [ARCH & ARCH]
17 September – title to be confirmed on the north east lead industry, Greg Finch [CCA]
26 September – title to be confirmed, Paul Brown [ARCH & ARCH]
29 September – Deceptively Spacious: Durham Castle and the walls survey, Richard Annis [TAS]
10 October – Heritage is more precious than oil: teaching pupils about the past in Jordan, Arwa Badan [ARCH & ARCH]
14 November – Fire, War and Flood: Destruction and Reconstruction of World Heritage Sites, Christopher Doppelhoffer [ARCH & ARCH]
27 October – title and speaker to be confirmed [TAS]
24 November – title and speaker to be confirmed [TAS]

A Note on Further Numbers
Since the start of the year our CBA North numbers of members have continued to grow; some five new members have joined us. Welcome to them one and all of them! At the start of the year the views of our website looked like;

It is therefore pleasing to see that our January and February emails have been well received and that website numbers continue at the same sort of level;

It is with your support that CBA North thrives and is able to support such conferences, and work within the CBA family, as that described below. This is much appreciated by Committee and gives us a purpose for the future.

Can March’s figure be better again? That is also up to you as members, particularly our group members, to help spread the word as we spread your news to everyone else. Already the next email to you is under construction (but whether we send that later this month or the start of April has yet to be decided), so please feel free to send on any news in the meantime.

Northern Prehistory: Connected Communities: a Tullie House conference reviewed
Elsa Price and Kate Sharpe, instigators and co-organisers of the Northern Prehistory conference have given us a review of their wide-ranging conference. CBA North Committee was very pleased to be able to support this conference looking at many different aspects of prehistory of sites, current research on sites and finds, how to research and present it. They write;
 
‘Tullie House’s first in-house conference was held at the museum over the weekend of the 12 and 13 October 2019. This was generously supported with a grant from CBA North and supported with bursaries for students by the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society.


‘As Curator of Human History [Elsa], I teamed up with archaeology researcher, Dr Kate Sharpe from Durham University to try and replicate our own exchange of ideas and perspectives of Cumbrian prehistory on a larger stage. As intended, the conference attracted delegates from across a diverse range of sectors. The 75 attendees represented commercial archaeology units, museums and learning, various heritage sites, academics, students, community archaeology groups and private researchers and amateurs. This bringing together of a wide variety of backgrounds was a key objective of the conference, recognising that multiple organisations, groups and individuals are working in similar areas, yet seldom have the opportunity to share and develop through networking with one another.


A network of museum curators, education officers, CBA North members and others – all conference attendees – listening to interpretation consultant Dot Boughton explain all about the Bewcastle cauldron

‘The keynote presentation was delivered by Professor Richard Bradley of Reading University and the programme included 11 sessions across the weekend including discussions on: what we mean by ‘Northern Prehistory’, material culture, access and engagement, the Langdale axe quarries, and the major site of Stainton West. A conference discussion was led by Paul Frodsham and concluded that there was an active community of people who wanted to do more with both Cumbrian and wider northern prehistory, and are keen to form stronger relationships with other disciplines and organisations. It was also noted that Cumbria should not viewed as “northern” but rather central to the British Isles, and future research work should aim to connect with Yorkshire, southern Scotland and Ireland. Delegates requested that contact details be shared and Tullie House has been compiling a database to help facilitate networking and potentially generate future projects. This contact bank has now been compiled and distributed. Anyone wishes to obtain a copy can do so by emailing me at elsa.price@tulliehouse.org.

A Connected Community of the past; some of Mesolithic Stainton West explained

‘For Tullie House, the permanent Prehistory Gallery had had no major development since its installation in 1991. The recent development of the new displays meant that reconnecting and exploring the findings and ideas from the Cumbrian prehistory community was essential. This ensured that the gallery refresh embraced recent thinking and now better reflects the whole county. The new gallery was part of the focus of this conference, to demonstrate how the results of research and fieldwork can be disseminated to wide audience base. Supporting this central idea were talks from a variety of museum and heritage professionals addressing the challenges of curating prehistory-based school sessions. Papers were presented from Tyne & Wear Archives and Museums (Kathryn Wharton), Leeds Museums and Galleries (Emily Nelson) and Durham University Library and Heritage Collections (Paddy Holland). Alongside this Gabrielle Heffernan, curatorial manager at Tullie House spoke about how best to access and museum’s research collections. Bolstering these talks were practical education-based workshops from Sarah Forster from Tullie House, an optional trip to the prehistoric landscape of Moor Divock led by Emma Watson and a knapping demonstration by James Dilly from Ancient Craft.

Another part of the new displays; with video showing knapping as demonstrated at the conference, original artefacts within the case and handling materials attached to the bench

‘For those working in commercial and academic archaeology the conference provided a valuable opportunity to catch up on work being done across the county, to learn about new approaches and interpretations, and to make both research and business connections in a relaxed environment. The positive messages from national heritage organisations were also well received and will perhaps encourage more fieldwork to investigate the rich array of prehistoric landscapes across the county. The declared intention of Tullie House to foster increased access to collections was also extremely encouraging and will hopefully see both students and more experienced researchers turn their attention to the wealth of Cumbrian artefacts held by the museum.  
 
‘Additional activities included post-conference drinks and a conference dinner. Overall, the conference was extremely well-received with all delegates indicating that they would like to attend similar interdisciplinary events in the future. Feedback also indicated that attendees would have liked more museum gallery time built into the schedule, and that they found the parallel sessions frustrating as they were unable to attend all talks. The closing discussion revealed that almost all audience members would have liked to attend the museum education-based talks, and yet the majority chose the alternative parallel session, perhaps sticking within their own comfort zones. The parallel format was an inevitable compromise used in order to balance the objective of including as many as possible of the wide range of speakers who all submitted high quality papers. Perhaps however, rather than making the sessions thematic in the traditional fashion as we did, we could in future make them truly interdisciplinary. Mixing up sessions might feel a little odd, but our experience suggests that, in terms of improved exchanges between disciplines, the rewards might be significant!’.

Our thanks to Elsa and Kate for this write-up and organising what was a most enjoyable conference – of so many different parts. Of especial note are the follow-up’s to that conference in the networks set up and renewed, they are there to use. (If you have an idea or proposal on what CBA North Committee should give a grant to aid this year, please feel free to get in touch).

The 2019 Elgee Memorial Lecture: Durham and Dunbar
Maureen Norrie, Editor of the Teesside Archaeological Society’s Bulletin, has written to us of another connected community of the past – those soldiers of the Scottish army imprisoned at Durham – and also of a community of the present in how the annual Elgee Memorial Lecture works between a number of local groups. By the kind permission of the Teesside Archaeological Society we reproduce her write-up, which also appears in the current TAS Bulletin, for everyone in the CBA North membership. She writes;

‘This year’s Elgee Memorial Lecture (7 December 2019, Dorman Museum, Middlesbrough) was a ‘flagship’ event for TAS. It was our turn to host it on a once-in-four-years occasion, taking turns to do so with three other local Societies: Cleveland Naturalists Club, Cleveland and Teesside Local History Society, and Cleveland Industrial Archaeology Society. It is co-hosted annually by the Dorman Museum in honour of Frank Elgee (1881-1972) ‘archaeologist, geologist and naturalist, who is probably the best-known Curator of the Dorman Museum and [who] made a lifelong study of the North Yorkshire Moors, including its archaeology’ (Phil Philo, TAS Bulletin 2017, p.22).
 
That’ll be one of them Scottish soldiers, then’. In his talk on ‘Durham and Dunbar, Scottish soldiers at Palace Green’, Richard Annis (Archaeological Services, Durham University) described the unexpected discovery in 2013 of two (partial) mass graves in an overgrown, enclosed, yard on the western side of Palace Green, Durham, during preliminary works for the construction of a Café at Palace Green Library. The bones did indeed prove to be (as a digger-operator predicted) Scottish soldiers: prisoners-of-war from the Battle of Dunbar, 3 September 1650, who survived an eight-day forced march from the battle-site to Durham, only to die in Durham of (mostly) dysentery.


Elgee Memorial Lecture, Dorman Museum 2019. Centre Richard Annis (speaker), Freya Horsfield and Kira-May Charley (Chair and Deputy Chair respectively of TAS, either side of Richard)

‘The talk included not only the dead soldiers, and what forensic investigations could reveal about their lives; but also what could be learned about their surviving comrades, some of whom were transported to America and, after a period of indentured labour, remained there. Full details are included in ‘Lost Lives, New Voices: unlocking the stories of the Scottish soldiers from the Battle of Dunbar 1650’, co-authored by C Gerrard, P Graves, A Millard, R Annis, and A Caffell.

‘The bones were reburied in Elvet Hill Road Cemetery, Durham City, in May 2018, and a permanent headstone installed. There are also plaques to their memory in the site where the bones were discovered; and in Durham Cathedral (their former prison) alongside the altar to Queen Margaret of Scotland, in the Chapel of the Nine Altars’.

The Elgee Memorial Lecture as Maureen indicated also a connected community of groups interested in the varied interests of Frank Elgee. A list of all the previous Elgee Lectures, together with the host organisation, can be found on the TAS website here. Can you fill in the blanks for the missing lectures? Were you there? We are sure that TAS and their partners would welcome that information.

CBA National news;
1) The Birmingham National-Regional CBA Groups meeting

Claire Corkill, Development Manager, has written of what is underway between CBA National and the other Regional CBA Groups. These notes show how your responses from the December 2018 survey and March 2019 are being taken on to help shape both North and National direction for a better future.


Claire writes;
‘CBA North is part of a network of regional groups across England and Wales all working with the shared goal of ‘Archaeology for All’ and helping to create opportunities for more people to get involved with archaeology. Representatives from the CBA and the CBA regional groups met in Birmingham in January to discuss opportunities to work together more closely in the future.

‘Part of the inspiration for this meeting were the outcomes of the CBA’s audience development survey funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund (NLHF) and undertaken by Tricolor 2018-2019. Many thanks to those of you who completed the survey or participated in one of the associated workshops. The survey highlighted the value of the regional groups, and January’s meeting was the first in a number of conversations that aim to develop the relationships between the regional groups and look at ways to improve communications and share ideas and information. Our next meeting of the CBA regional groups is already planned for a Saturday in June.

‘The CBA are currently preparing a further bid to the NLHF and regional group representatives had the opportunity to share their thoughts on elements, such as a possible new CBA website, digital assets and skills development. The development of this work in conjunction with the regional groups will help enable the CBA to provide more beneficial support, creating new opportunities to work together in the future, helping the groups to become more resilient and create more opportunities for members to get involved with archaeology’.

A CBA North’s comment on Claire’s notes is below; 
 
‘We cannot say if many CBA North members took part in the online survey, only you can know if you or group did, however a goodly number did – but we thank you nonetheless. We were especially pleased to act as host for one of the only three on-the-ground workshops in Newcastle last year, and thank those members and friends who attended that event.

‘It is pleasing to see that work from the survey and workshops is being taken on board by CBA National. Many of you have felt that there has not enough prominence and support of the local-regional-national family in evidence over recent years. However, to our mind this work is actively reinvigorating all parts of the family. Your views so far have been carried into the report of the survey, as well as in our representation at Birmingham, and at other meetings, for you. Already the next CBA regional groups meeting is in our diary for June. Your views, comments and feedback are most welcome at any time, useful to us and where possible enacted upon …but we do need them in the first instance.

‘We are looking at a possible April event primarily for our local group members within the CBA North network (perhaps for those groups who are not yet members as well?). This may be on who, how and what and we are currently doing – and importantly what you/they would like to do in the future. We approach the end of our own current five year plan and this, combined with the revitalisation of CBA National, gives a chance to look ahead, perhaps a bit more definitely within that CBA family of local-regional-national groups’.

2) CBA National’s Communication and Participation in Archaeology Survey: some initial results and a thank you!
In our last email to you we also carried the links to a current CBA National survey as pictured below. Thank you to all of those that on contributed to that survey. This very much follows on from the Birmingham meeting described above by Claire.

James Rose, who you will remember is CBA National’s Communications and Marketing Manager, writes of the survey results;

‘The CBA recently ran a survey on communication and participation in archaeology. The aim was to gather evidence that demonstrated whether there was public demand for some of the changes and improvements the CBA would like to make to their website in support of an application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

‘Firstly a huge thank you to those that contributed. The response was fantastic! Almost 800 people completed the survey from a cross-section of people with all levels of interest in archaeology. They results show that people are keen for more news and content, information about careers and learning and, crucially, more ways to participate. CBA regional groups are vital to providing those opportunities. These results show what valuable work they do and how much potential there is to grow with local group and individual members. You can view the initial findings on the CBA blog here. A short video lasting a minute has also been prepared giving many of the responses to the survey, many showing the value of archaeology in other ways. This can be found as this YouTube video.

‘If you have any more comments or suggestions, please do get in touch through the links here for CBA National or CBA North‘.

County Durham Archaeology Day: Saturday 21 March 2020
Tracey Donnelly, of the Archaeology Team, Durham County Council, has sent us details of this year’s County Durham Archaeology Day. This year it is slightly later than normal, but nonetheless if you’re interested in archaeology come along and find out more. This year’s fascinating talks will be:

– New Investigations at the East Park Roman Settlement, Sedgefield. Josh Hogue, DigVentures
– Excavation at Binchester Roman Fort 2019. Steve Collison, Northern Archaeological Associates
– The First Ever Excavations at Middleham Castle, Bishop Middleham. Josh Hogue, DigVentures
– Excavations at Walworth Deserted Medieval Village. Richard Carlton, The Archaeological Practice
– Investigations on the North Terrace of Auckland Castle 2019. Jamie Armstrong, Archaeological Services Durham University
– The Discovery of Bek’s Chapel at Auckland Castle. John Castling, The Auckland Project
– The Portable Antiquities Scheme 2019. Benjamin Westwood, Finds Liaison Officer Durham and Tees

The essential details are;

Location: Council Chamber, County Hall, (there is ample free parking at County Hall, and County Hall is well served with public transport. Durham City Park and Ride Scheme buses also stop at County Hall).
Time: 9:50am – 4:00pm. Doors Open at 9:15 AM
Cost: £18.00 which includes buffet lunch, teas & coffees; £14.00 for full-time students, please let us know if you have any dietary requirements, or require a vegetarian lunch.

Tickets sell out very quickly so book early to avoid disappointment.

To book and pay for a place online follow https://doitonline.durham.gov.uk/ and click on ‘More Services’ and select ‘Archaeology Day – Order Tickets’ or contact 03000 260000 if you wish to book and pay over the phone. Please note that requests for tickets to be sent out in the post will incur a £1 postage and packing fee.

There will be displays by local societies and archaeological contractors as well as bookstalls in the adjacent Durham Room. As noted CBA North will be there with a stall, we as CBA North might even have some bargain books for sale there. We cannot promise that they will be those below, but there might be.

CBA North’s Chair’s Spring message, February and March Events, and news

CBA North Chair’s Spring message
Dear CBA North Members,

I am writing to you for the first time in my capacity as Chair of CBA North to thank you for your continued membership and support. I would also like to highlight some of the work of CBA North, which I hope will be of interest.

Firstly, our regularly updated events page contains details of the date, speaker, title and local society to which the talk is being presented: https://cbanorth.wordpress.com/events/

We try to include details of as many public talks on archaeology and history which take place in the region, though if your group is not represented please let us know and we shall update our list of events. As you can see from the list there is a great range of talks given every week across the region.

The contact information for these groups can be found in the Local Societies and Groups section of our website: https://cbanorth.wordpress.com/local-societies-and-groups/

As with the talks, if the contact details of your group are absent or out of date please let us know.

This year we are exploring new ways in which we can serve our members and we are asking you for suggestions. If there are things you think we could change, information you would like to see passed on, or activities which you think would boost local interest in heritage matters please write to us or email us with your suggestions.

This activity can only take place through the support of our members, and through the volunteered time of the CBA North committee: https://cbanorth.wordpress.com/committee/

If you feel you could contribute to the work of CBA North, and you would like to think of becoming a committee member please get in touch. The committee is for everyone, and you do not need to be a professional archaeologist or historian to be a member. Archaeology for All is the motto of the Council for British Archaeology and we hope our committee represents the diversity of our members.

Thank you again for your continued support.

All the best for 2019,

Don O’Meara
Chair of CBA North
22.02.2019

February and March 2019 Events
We’ve pulled out the February and March 2019 events from our events page and the fuller listing as a whole for you here. There is much happening despite it being within the last full week of February and the first week of March, as well as later in the year accessible through the link above.

February 2019
4 February – The Paxton Waterwheel: restoration of an 18th century water supply system, John Home-Robertson [BAS]
6 February – Operation Nightingale, Alexander Sotheran [TILLVAS]
6 February – AGM and presentations [TYNEDALE]
7 February – The first season’s work at Linbrig, John Nolan [CCA]
11 February – Holy Island lifeboats, Linda Bankier [Lowick Heritage Group]
11 February – Viking age Cumbria, Fiona Edmonds [LUNESDALE]
12 February – Sir William Arrol & Co Ltd, Dr Miles Oglethorpe [NEWCOMEN]
13 February – Archaeobotany and urban environments – cesspits and sanitation in Medieval England, Don O’Meara [NAG]
14 February – Investigating lead tokens from Holm Cultram Abbey, Kate Rennicks [APPLEBY]
23 February – Nationalism and Archaeology: Excavating Romania’s Roman Past, Emily Hamscan [ARCH & ARCH]
26 February – Recent Research on the Bombardment of the Hartlepools, World War I, Mark Simmons [TAS]
27 February – Excavations at Derwentcote: An Analysis of Nineteenth Century Workers’ Housing, Rob Young [SOCANTS]
28 February – Sir Vincent Riden – Last Chief Mechanical Engineer of the North Eastern Railway, Andrew Everett [Tyneside Industrial Archaeology Group]
February – title and speaker to be announced [NEAES]

March 2019
4 March – Animal Bones in Roman Britain (title to be confirmed), Dr Jim Morris [BAS]
6 March – Bronze Age Burials in N.E. England and S.E. Scotland, Dr Chris Fowler [TILLVAS]
11 March – Deserted Medieval Villages of North Northumberland, Allan Colman [Lowick Heritage Group]
11 March – Stone circles, rings and mounds in Cumbria, Tom Clare [LUNESDALE]
13 March – Excavations at Berk Farm round mound, Isle of Man – the story so far, Dr Chris Fowler [NAG]
14 March – The Work of the Cumbria Vernacular Buildings Group, June Hill [APPLEBY]
16 March – AGM and Exploring North Pennine Place Names, Diana Whaley [ALTOGETHER]
16 March – Deir el-Medina revisited: latest work and discoveries from a site thought to be well known, Cedric Gobeil [NEAES]
20 March – Seven hours, a rubber dingy and a shipwreck: the search for Nova Zembla, Matthew Ayre [NAG]
23 March – Cresswell Pele Tower: From Reivers to Ruins to Restoration, Barry Mead [ARCH & ARCH]
26 March – Buildings of the Historic Core of Skelton, Robin Daniels [TAS]
27 March – Public and private in a domestic context: The underground spaces of the House of the Cryptoporticus in Pompeii, Thea Ravasi [SOCANTS]
28 March – Aspects of the industrial infrastructure on Holy Island, Roger Jermy [CCA]
28 March – Kenton Wartime Bunker; Past, Present and Future, John Mabbit & Russ Charnock [Tyneside Industrial Archaeology Group]

Local Group Round-up:
the 2018 activities of the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland

Jennifer Morrison, former CBA North Secretary and now Committee member of the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland (variously known as the AASDN or even shorter the ‘Arch & Arch’), has written an update of their activities in 2018. Another filled year awaits its members in 2019. She writes;

The Society has had another activity-filled year.

We had five lectures on a selection of wide-ranging topics. Most of the talks were held in our usual venue at Elvet Riverside in Durham. In June Dr Stephanie Piper, Assistant Project Archaeologist with Archaeological Services Durham University and Lithic Specialist, talked to members about the Mesolithic in the Western Isles of Scotland. Our July lecture was given by Dr Sonia O’Connor, Honorary Visiting Fellow, University of York Post-Doctoral Researcher, Archaeological Sciences, part of the AGES Division in the University of Bradford, on the fascinating use of x-rays in archaeological science. Sonia’s lecture was followed by a wine reception at Durham Heritage Centre and Museum. In September Emma Watson of Durham University gave a paper on the ‘forgotten’ and sometimes neglected prehistoric monuments in northern England. Emma will be leading a bus trip for the society to see some of these monuments in 2019. Our autumn lecture was by Peter Ryder, Buildings Historian, on the under-studied nonconformist chapels of the North-East. In November Dr Kayt Armstrong, a Researcher with Durham University, talked about landscapes of the Great Depression in North East England.

The Society’s Annual General Meeting in May was held at Trinity House in Newcastle, with our guided tour led by Grace McCombie, buildings historian. Our December Members Meeting on 1st December was hosted by Ormesby Hall. We had this lovely National Trust property, which was decorated for a 1950s Christmas, all to ourselves for the afternoon. Five short enjoyable informal presentations by members were followed by tea and cake.

AASDN members have been treated to three excursions this year. On 23rd June members enjoyed an informative guided walk around Sunniside Conservation Area in Sunderland, led by John Tumman, co-author of Sunderland Heritage Forum’s town trail A Walk Around Historic Sunderland: The Fawcett and Sunniside Estates. In 1810 the Wearmouth Bridge Commissioners paid the Fawcett family £500 for a road, now Fawcett Street, to be taken across their fields to serve the new bridge, which had been built in 1796. The development of this part of Sunderland then accelerated rapidly. Four storey terraced houses with private gardens were built on Fawcett Street for the middle classes and it became the principal residential street in town.


One of Sunderland’s more unusual buildings:
The Elephant Tea Rooms, 65-66 Fawcett Street, Sunderland

On Saturday 18th August we had an enjoyable trip to the market town of Barnard Castle, led by Caroline Hardie. The town was founded in the twelfth century. We explored the maze of streets and alleyways behind the main street. Amongst the lesser known architectural gems of the town, we saw weavers’ cottages on Thorngate with their characteristic row of windows directly beneath the roof eaves, Thorngate cloth mill, the former Methodist chapel on West View, now converted into apartments and the richly carved chest tomb of George Hopper who died aged 23 in 1725.

Our last excursion of 2018 was to Aldborough. Rose Ferraby and Professor Martin Millett guided us around Roman Isurium, the capital of the Brigantes tribe. Isurium was probably founded in the late first or early second century. The Roman road through Isurium formed a leg of both Dere Street and Watling Street.

The society website has its own website: http://www.aasdn.org.uk/. Membership of AASDN costs only £20 a year and joint membership is £25. Enquiries about membership should be sent to the Membership Secretary, Janet McDougall, who can be emailed here.

Stop Press!
As you will see in the events listed above, the ‘Arch & Arch’ lecture for February is tomorrow afternoon in Durham. Everyone is welcome to hear Emily Hamscan speak on Nationalism and Archaeology: Excavating Romania’s Roman Past on Saturday afternoon at Durham. The time and venue of the lecture can be seen in looking at our Twitter pages for their poster, which can be found here.

Events & Exhibitions in May & June across CBA North-land

CBA North News
Apologies for the delay in sending you further news of events across CBA North-land for May and June. As you will see it is something of a bumper issue with many different events coming up soon. Another similarly-sized email is already in preparation with yet more events and announcements to come. Some of these events will bring up-to-date findings from recent research and projects following on from previous emails to you, some deal with new topics different again. For some of these events you will need to book up.

As many of you will know the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) will take effect soon. We will be emailing everyone on what GDPR means for us to hold and process your information, and more importantly for you to continue to receive CBA North news and information. Further details for these will appear in time on the CBA North website as well to accord with these regulations. However if you you have any immediate questions, please feel free to let us know of them.

Once again, if you would like to submit anything on your local group’s recent activities or plans for this summer, please let us know. Keep an eye to our Events page on the website for any additions to the regular talks and lectures of various groups across the CBA North region. Additions to this page are made throughout the year as we know of them.

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee
13.05.2018

Events this week
1) Border Archaeological Society lecture: Finding a Lost Lindisfarne Estate 
There are a number of events coming up this week. These are located in all parts of our region, they start tomorrow night at Berwick with the next of the Border Archaeological Society’s [BAS] lectures. Josie McChrystal, their Secretary, gives us some more details of what promises to be an interesting talk.

Josie informs us that;

“In the early years, the Lindisfarne monastery built up a huge land holding in Northumberland and southern Scotland but in the troubled times of the Viking era some of these lands were taken away from them. Later writers referred to these lands without knowing much about them. We will discover one of these estates in mid-Northumberland on Monday evening.  

The renowned archaeologist Colm O’Brien will be the speaker on this occasion. He has excavated in Northumberland and taught at the universities of Newcastle and Sunderland. He is especially interested in the Age of Bede and now, in retirement, he co-directs the Bernician Studies Group, a community learning group with projects in Northumberland and in County Donegal in Ireland.

As ever, the lecture begins at 7.30 at Berwick Parish Church Hall (Holy Trinity) off The Parade, TD15 1DF. Please tell your family and friends about what promises to be a very interesting evening. All are welcome”.

2) The First World War in the Tees Valley Conference
Dave Errickson, Chair of Teesside Archaeological Society [TAS] one of our group members, has let us know of another event. Members will remember our previous note of our Home Front Legacy workshop in 2015 which highlighted ways groups could look out for and record First World War sites. In contrast to Lindisfarne and the north of our region, this concentrates upon these more modern sites in the south of our region and includes work carried out by the TAS group and others on Teesside recording them. All the talks in this free conference relate to the First World War in some way. The conference is in Middlesbrough and on Saturday this week, but you will need to book places for this. They can be obtained from this Eventbrite page here.

3) North East Ancient Egypt Society lecture: Tell Timai and its Terracotta Figures
Also on Saturday, but in Newcastle, is also the next lecture of the North East Ancient Egypt Society on something different again.

The first Tyne and Wear Archaeology Day
Jennifer Morrison, Tyne and Wear Archaeological Officer, has sent us details of the first Tyne and Wear Archaeology Day which is coming up soon in next month on Saturday, 16 June.

Again you will need to book and again this is a fully packed day. However in this case, whilst all are from the Tyne and Wear area, the talks cover a range of topics including;

– Prehistoric settlements found at East Wideopen and West Shiremoor in North Tyneside
– Roman industrial remains found at Dorcas Avenue in Benwell
– The Roman Wallquest Community Archaeology Project at Benwell, Wallsend (including the newly discovered Roman baths) and South Shields
– Industrial archaeology of the Newcastle Pottery found at Pottery Lane/Forth Banks, Newcastle
– Industrial Archaeology of Ambrose Crowley’s Ironworks at Swalwell in Gateshead
– Crypt Archaeology and human remains found under a former Bethel Chapel in Villiers Street, Sunderland
– World War Two and Cold War Archaeology at Blakelaw and Kenton Bunkers

To book places details are given in the poster or through clicking the link here. In a fully packed day. Jennifer notes that “Most of the archaeological projects which will be discussed have been funded by developers through the planning process, and the aim of the day is to pass on the results of these exciting excavations to local residents”.

Following on from previous emails…
1) The next Dig Deeper talk

Previous CBA North emails have announced talks on forensics and facial reconstruction, as well as osteoarchaeology, for the meetings of various groups. The next Dig Deeper talk at Durham, later this month, will discuss some of the new approaches to looking at and recording old bones – sometimes at a distance to the original samples. 

2) Bodies of Evidence: How science unearthed Durham’s dark secret
Also bone-related our last email carried information about a talk on the Scottish soldiers from the 1650 Battle of Dunbar who had died and been buried at Durham by Richard Annis, once again at Berwick to the Border Archaeological Society in April. Andrew Millard, also of Durham University and involved with the Scottish Soldiers project, has written to us a bit more about the forthcoming exhibition and events associated with that project.

He writes on behalf of the project team in an update to April’s talk with what planned for this summer;

“This exhibition shows how the latest scientific techniques have revealed the soldiers’ story – how they lived, why they died, and what became of those who survived.

Their skeletons were discovered during excavations in Durham in November 2013 and, for the first time, visitors to Palace Green Library will come face to face with a 3D reconstruction of the face of one of these men in the exhibition. The exhibition also tells the story of those survivors who were transported across the Atlantic to the edge of the known world. These men lived to have families and we are proud to have connected with many descendants, and we hope that descendants will be able to visit us and the exhibition in Durham this summer.

Running alongside the exhibition will be a programme of events, including family activities, public lectures, and the new production Woven Bones from Cap-a-Pie theatre company. The play will tell the story of the Scottish soldiers, and will tour venues along the route marched from Dunbar to Durham. Details of the production can be found on the Cap-a-Pie website.

Key highlights of this programme of events so far include:

– 18th June: Evening gallery opening with Professor Chris Gerrard, Project Lead for the Scottish Soldiers Archaeology Project
– 30th July: Evening lecture by Dr David Caldwell, President of the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland
– 13th August: Evening lecture by Professor Caroline Wilkinson, Director of Face Lab, Liverpool John Moores University, which produced the facial reconstruction
– 3rd September: Evening lecture by Arran Johnston, Founding Director of the Scottish Battlefields Trust

The Scottish Soldiers Archaeology Project Team would be delighted to welcome descendants to the exhibition and would be pleased to arrange private tours with members of the Team, so please do let us know if you are planning a visit by emailing Scottish.soldiers@durham.ac.uk. We recognise that Durham is a long way to travel for many of you, and so we are developing a small sister touring exhibition which will visit venues in the United States. More information about this touring exhibition will be made available in due course.

Further details and more events will be announced soon. Visit our website to find out more about the exhibition.

A book documenting the archaeology of the discovery, the process of analysis, and the history of the Scottish soldiers, including stories of the survivors, has also been produced by the Project Team and will be available in the coming months. Visit Oxbow Books to find out more about the book here.

We hope to see you this summer.

Kind regards,

The Scottish Soldiers Archaeology Project Team & Exhibition Curatorial Team”.

CBA North news this week

CBA North News
We’ve a few announcements in this email for you from a variety of sources. Firstly there is a CBA National survey which is anticipated as an up-to-date summary of all local archaeological groups across England and Wales, some further details of the Teesside Archaeological Society, reminders of other events from Appleby to Berwick, via Newcastle and Crookham, this and next month, as well as a note about the forthcoming General Data Protection Regulations.

If you would like to submit anything, or indeed for the next CBA North Committee, please feel free to do so. The contributions and thoughts of all Members and Followers are most welcome at any time.

Much of our admin work behind the scenes over the next few weeks will be preparing things for the General Data Protection Regulations. We will make it as painless and easy for you as possible, but we can’t ignore it as the law.

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee
27.03.2018

CBA National’s Community Archaeology Survey
CBA North members may remember the work of our former Secretary Suzi Thomas with CBA National back in 2009 and 2010. This provided a baseline of all archaeological groups which was published in 2010. Debbie Frearson, now at CBA National, has written to give us and therefore you details of a fresh survey;

“The Council for British Archaeology (CBA) has launched a survey about archaeology volunteering. We want to find who out takes an active part in community archaeology and what kind of things you get involved with. Most importantly we’d like to know about the kinds of additional support you need to thrive and how the Council for British Archaeology might be able to help you. The last time we asked you about this was 10 years ago and a lot has changed since then! We would appreciate it if you could distribute this email to your members, the survey can be completed by a representative of a group or an individual.

The CBA brings together the interests of a wide range of people and organisations involved with archaeology in the UK. This includes commercial archaeologists, those working in local authorities, museums or other parts of the archaeological heritage sector; universities; community archaeologists and volunteers. We will use the results from the survey, which has been funded by the Headley Trust,  to help shape the work of the CBA over the coming period and better tailor the support we, and others, can offer to community archaeology.

Click here to start the survey https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/CBA_Community_archaeology_2018. The survey closes on Thursday 29 March 2018.

Thank you for your help.

[If you would like a copy of all survey questions so you can discuss and debate your answers between your local group’s committee, please let us know and we’ll see if we can forward one onto you. Since the last survey a number of new local groups have formed, so this survey will be very useful as an up-to-date summary of what is happening and where. Please forward this email or the survey link on to others!].

Tonight’s TAS talk
Teesside Archaeological Society’s monthly talk, tonight, at Stockton is Chris Casswell of DigVentures. He will be talking on a series of excavations across, adjacent and related to sites in CBA North-land. His title is Lindisfarne to Lancaster: Community-based Excavations in the North of England (and a bit of Scotland).

This talk will look at a number of excavations – from a Bronze Age barrow to Medieval village – that have happened, most notably at Lindisfarne, as well as one to come this year in Scotland related to Durham and Lindisfarne. As normal for TAS events this will be at Stockton Library at 7.30.

Other events to come in March and April 2018
As we are in the last week of March and an Easter break close at hand for many here is a quick snapshot of what is happening across CBA North-land from our Events page for the end of March and start of April. Just today we have also have updated this page with all the TAS events planned as well.

28 March – A frontier and community in transition: the Tungrian Vindolanda, Andrew Birley [SOCANTS]

9 April – Durham and the Battle of Dunbar: Identifying Scottish soldiers at Palace Green, Durham, Richard Annis [BAS]
11 April – The Peregrini Project: Excavations on Lindisfarne, Richard Carlton [NAG]
12 April – The Late Iron Age royal site at Stanwick, North Yorkshire: new perspectives, Professor Colin Haselgrove [APPLEBY]

Looking further ahead we also have heard of one group’s 2018 to 2019 programme already!

Further details are through our website pages for the groups, the times and venues of these meetings. We hope you can get along to them!

General Data Protection Regulations
We will shortly be writing to all members about these changes which are very important for how we contact you. This means some changes to our Social Media and Digital Information Policy which was adopted in 2016, which are largely tweaks that Committee are working through.

In the meantime we have some notes from CBA National highlighting what local groups need to do and as a possible template for your group. If there is a demand from our local group members, then we might look to hold a meeting for you on this before the end of May deadline. Let us know if you would be interested in this.

Or if your group ahead of the pack, then let us know so we can highlight your work to others of the CBA North network.

Final February events across CBA North

CBA North News
A quick email to update Members and Followers of events this week. The final week of February sees three events that we know of, as well as the chance to book up for a regular March event.

It is all go despite the snow! Take care out there!

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee,
27.02.2018

Tonight’s TAS lecture: the Portable Antiquities Scheme
Following on from our earlier notice of the Durham talk on treasure hoards, with a particularly Bronze age focus, Ben Westwood is talking to the Teesside Archaeological Society tonight. His topic is The Portable Antiquities Scheme in County Durham, Darlington and Teesside: Recent Finds of Note. Those Members who attended last year’s AGM will recall details of the scheme outlined in the talk following the business, here you’ll hear of some more and more recent finds.

Other lectures
This week also sees two other lectures – both at the Mining Institute, Newcastle upon Tyne. Tomorrow morning sees;

…whilst the evening sees the regular lecture of The Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle at 6pm with Diana Whaley talking on Northumberland and its Names c.1860 – new light from the Ordnance Survey Name Books.

Durham Archaeology Day
Bookings are now open for the ever popular County Durham Archaeology Day which this year is on Saturday 10th March from 9.45 to 4.15pm at the Council Chamber, County Hall, Durham. This year sees talks on;

  • Further research on the remains of the Scottish soldiers found at Palace Green.
  • Investigations at Auckland Castle. 
  • A community excavation at Piercebridge Roman fort.
  • Historic Building Recording at 34, Saddler Street, Durham.  
  • A new Roman military diploma from Lanchester

At £16.00 per person (students £12.00) tickets include buffet lunch and refreshments mid-morning and mid-afternoon. To book and pay for a place online follow the link http://www.durham.gov.uk/doitonline and click Archaeology Day from the services listed.  Alternatively telephone 03000 260 000 to book a place and pay over the phone.

Events in the forthcoming week (and our Events list updated)

CBA North News
CBA North Committee work continues full of busy – this has included bringing our Events page up to date with recent changes. Please feel free to bring to our attention any further events that you know of to send round everyone else. Apologies for the lateness in the email – there is so much happening across the CBA North region and much else we are doing for you behind the scenes.

CBA North Committee,
20.01.2018

Arch & Arch Society lecture – this afternoon
The lecture series of many of the local groups within the CBA North network started near the start of the month. Here’s a poster for something happening this afternoon if you are in the area of Durham.

Arch & Arch Society Annual Research Grant
The ‘Arch & Arch’, more officially the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland, have written to us of their Annual Research Grant. Jo Shoebridge, their Secretary, writes that the society;

“The Society was founded in 1861 and has, since that time, pursued an active programme of lectures, field trips and publications. Based in Durham, but with interests throughout the region, it aims to provide an opportunity for all those interested in archaeology and architectural history to find out more, visit places of interest and experience hands on activities. 

Annual Research Grant
The application process is open for our annual research grant, which welcomes applications for a maximum of £250 for projects based within the North-East of England.

See http://www.aasdn.org.uk/news.htm to read more about the award and how to apply. Please note that the closure date for applications has been extended to the 31st January 2018″.

Further events to come this week
Next week is another busy week to come with lectures. In Durham on Wednesday is this;
…whilst on Thursday is the first 2018 event of our group member the Teesside Archaeological Society* where Professor Tim Thompson will be speaking on Bodies of Evidence (for more on this lecture see here) at Teesside, and on the Saturday in Newcastle is the first 2018 event of the North East Ancient Egypt Society*…

…and that of Tynedale Archaeology* in Hexham that afternoon as well.

As per 2017 there is plenty to get involved in.

*Details of each local group can be found in our Local Societies and Groups website page. (Please let us know of any 2018 alterations to this page).

Our Events page updated
In case you have not already seen our Events on our website, we’ve listed something like 50 archaeological group meetings all across the CBA North region.

In case you have already looked at this page, please take a glance for the new additions from the Northumberland Archaeological Group, Teesside Archaeological Society, Tynedale Archaeology and others besides. This information is up to date as far as we know and includes the changes that we have been told of.

Please feel free to circulate this email, through the links above or through the website page, to anyone that you think might be interested in these events.

November news

CBA North News
Another quick email with an extended list of the November events we know of. If you know of any others or would like us to publicise others, please let us know the details.

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee
01.11.2017

November News


8 November – AGM and the Sir Ralph Grey Monument in Chillingham Church, Derek Cutts [NAG]
9 November – Sequencing Ancient British Genomes, Matthew Teasdale [APPLEBY]

25 November – AGM and Annual Study Day: Fieldwork in Egypt: Old, New and Revisited, Angus Graham, Jo Rowland, Penny Wilson and Aurelia Masson-Berghoff [NEAES]
28 November – James Cook: Raising Anchors and Digging for Cottages, Phil Philo [TAS]
29 November – Incendiary letters and Iniquitous practices; Smuggling and Customs Evasion on the North East Coast 1750-1830, Tony Barrow [SOCANTS]

Vindolanda, violence and war; forthcoming events in CBA North-land

CBA North News
Today our email combines our alphabet of archaeology with the letters V and W with a regular update of events across CBA North-land. This month started with the Belief in the North East conference at Durham University today.

Hot on the heels of the conference are three further events for the Bronze Age, Ancient Egyptians and Mary, Queen of Scots, in this week alone. Vindolanda, violence and war all feature in events this and next month; there is plenty for you to take your pick with (as well as more to come this week)!

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee
01.10.2017

Local society events this month
Here is a list of events that we know of, so far, this month. Events, however, continue to be added to our website page – please let us know anything that we are missing!

2 October – “Spears shall be shaken, shields shall be broken”: reconstructing Bronze Age fighting styles, Andrea Dolfini [BAS]
7 October – Cobras, Demons and ‘Fighters’: Demonology in Ancient Egypt, Kasia Szpakowska [NEAES]

8 October – Mary, Queen of Scots, Jordan Evans [TILLVAS]

11 October – The Jomon Period Obsidian Mines in the Hoshikuso Pass, Nagawa, Japan, Pete Topping [NAG]
12 October – Medieval Grave Slabs of Cumbria, Peter Ryder [APPLEBY]
13 October – The Archaeology of Early Steam Locomotives, Dr Michael Bailey [Newcomen North East]
14 October – Title to be confirmed, David Mason [ARCH & ARCH]
15 October – David Dippie Dixon Memorial Lectures: The Roman assault on Burnswark Hill and New Views on Roman Scotland, John Reid [CCA]
25 October – Putting the People in the Pageant: Visions of People’s History and the Industrial Revolution in Historical Pageants in Britain, 1905-2016, Alexander Hutton [SOCANTS]
31 October – The River Tees Rediscovered, Robin Daniels [TAS]

Conference review: SGRP at Carlisle
Our region has played host to a number of national conferences this year which we hope to report to all members. Paul Bidwell, formerly Head of Archaeology, Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums, who retired in 2013, has provided this review of one of those events.

Paul writes “The Study Group for Roman Pottery (SGRP) was established in 1971 and now has a membership of 170 which consists mainly of people working for archaeological contracting organisations and museums, together with a healthy representation of independent researchers. This year its annual conference met at the Tullie House Museum in Carlisle on the weekend of 14–17 July.

Although there was a wide range of papers, the focus was on recent fieldwork and research in northern England. Pottery and burial practices in the Roman cemetery recently investigated at Botchergate, Carlisle were described by Megan Stoakley. Presentations on the material from the excavations in the extra-mural settlements at Brougham were given by Ruth Leary and Gwladys Monteil. One particularly interesting aspect of the pottery at Maryport is the presence of coarse wares imported from Mucking on the Thames estuary in Essex. It is a demonstration of the extent to which Roman military and urban sites in northern England had become dependent on the import of pottery from the Midlands and southern England in the mid-Roman period. Some of the implications of this change from local production in the earlier Roman period were explored by Jerry Evans in his account of pottery from recent excavations at Vindolanda. In the third century imports from continental Europe were in decline but were still of some importance. Most of the wine supplied to the Roman army in the North seems to have been supplied from southern Gaul and the Rhineland in barrels rather than amphorae, but, as Paul Bidwell explained, during the mid- to late third century imports from the famous wine-producing area of Campania in central Italy arrived in large quantities. They were contained in amphorae of distinctive forms and fabrics (see the photographs below).

Two mid-third century wine amphorae from Campania found at South Shields and Wallsend
(© Tyne and Wear Archives and Museums)

The Pottery Group meetings always include a short field trip, and this year an excursion was made to Vindolanda and the stretch of the Wall between Gilsland and Birdoswald. A highlight was the firing of a replica Roman pottery kiln at Vindolanda which was organised by Graham Taylor, a professional potter.

Other very interesting contributions dealt with pottery beyond our region, but mention made of some that described work at Scotch Corner and Catterick on the border with North Yorkshire. Excavations connected with the completion of the A1(M) have been on a huge scale and are likely to transform our understanding of Roman settlement in north-east England when the post-excavation analyses have been completed”.

Looking further ahead
Here is a selection of some of the other events happening in October and November across the CBA North region. If you want to get involved with these, with the exception of the open day next weekend, then you will need to book up. Contact details can be found in each of the posters.

For those that haven’t satisfied their fieldwork needs during the summer yet, Wardell Armstrong have sent us details of a further project examining whether a series of large stones in the Wear are the remains of a Roman structure.

Looking further ahead the Arbeia Society conference in November continues the Roman interests

Last minute announcement of TAS talk tonight

CBA North News
A quick posting to our Members and Followers to notice that the Teesside Archaeological Society’s lecture tonight – only announced last night – will be Durham’s Museum of Archaeology and its Collections by Gemma Lewis, at Stockton Central Library as per normal for the group. Details for the group can be found in our Local Societies and Groups webpage.


Part of the exhibition and activity space at the Durham Museum of Archaeology

Details of other events to come, as normal are on our own website’s pages, whilst another five days remain of the Festival of Archaeology this year. We would be interested to hear what our Members and Followers are up to over this period – both from organisers of events, as well as in what others have visited. As ever feel free to get in contact with your archaeological news. for others to hear of.

Best wishes,

CBA North Committee
25.07.2017