Our Community Archaeology Programme is seeking volunteers!

PUBLISHED: 11/09/2015

Two exciting community archaeology projects in the area will be undertaken this autumn by the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland. The projects are seeking volunteers!

Brignall Shrunken Medieval Village

The village of Brignall is one of many settlements that underwent a significant reduction in size and prosperity in the later medieval period. What are thought to be traces of former buildings and tofts have been identified on aerial photographs immediately south of the present village. There are a few fields bounded by ditches, but much of the area is disturbed with no set pattern, and no trace of house platforms. At the time of the Domesday survey, Brignall was composed of 12 carucates of land, all waste, but the village must have been of some importance in 1265 to have been granted an annual and weekly market. There were 4 mills in the village in 1712.
The project will consist of geophysical survey followed by targeted trenching to clarify the nature and extent of the remains of the medieval village. Volunteers can be involved in both elements of the project and will receive training in archaeological excavation, survey, recording and interpretation techniques. 

Hawkesley Hill Prehistoric Rock Art.

Field research by 2000 identified four ‘panels’ of Rock Art at the western edge of Hawkesley Hill, a few miles north-west of Barnard Castle . The motifs consist variously of cups, rings, grooves, isolated peck marks, and other more heavily eroded features some of which may actually be of natural origin. There are also a number of earth-fast boulders nearby. 

The project will entail the detailed recording of the visible Rock Art features and a search for additional examples in the vicinity both by surface inspection and by excavation. An area around each of the principal rock outcrops bearing Rock Art will be de-turfed and excavated in order to establish if there are other potentially contemporary archaeological phenomena nearby. Training in archaeological excavation, survey, recording and interpretation techniques. 

If you would like to get involved or would like further information, please email archandarch.dandn@durham.ac.uk


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