Six Great Archaeology Events

While the Festival of Archaeology has come to an end, your opportunity to discover more is only just beginning. Here are a few event highlights to give you a taste of what you can find during our festival…

Flint finds from Whirlow

Ancient Ways at Whirlow Hall Farm

Sheffield, South Yorkshire

What may seem like an ordinary farm in Sheffield has actually been the subject of archaeological interest since 2011, when a survey discovered evidence of a Romano-British enclosure. Since then, archaeologists have continued to uncover the history of this site, most recently with an excavation performed by experts and students of the University of Sheffield. Take this opportunity to not only visit the enclosure but be led on a walking tour by archaeologists, on hand to guide you through the exciting discoveries and answer your questions. Along the way you’ll be able to visit the experimental archaeology centre to learn about the potential of experimental reconstruction, before ending at the new display of exhibits from recent excavations. 

Go behind the scenes with Wessex Archaeology

Wessex Archaeology: Behind the Scenes

Salisbury, Wiltshire

Think archaeology is just about the digging? Think again. Wessex Archaeology will be leading exclusive tours to take you behind the scenes of an excavation, and what happens afterward. As a registered charity, Wessex Archaeology has been delivering archaeological and heritage services for 40 years, both on land and in water, with a wide range of clients and projects not only in the UK but overseas as well. Particularly special sites they’ve worked on include Stonehenge, the Olympic Park, and Bath Abbey, to name only a few, and recently they began a project in the Gulf of Mexico. Join them at their event in Salisbury to gain insight from experts into the archaeological process, learn what it’s like to work in the field, and see archaeology in virtual reality.

Dig up a skeleton at Caistor Roman Town

Who Made Caistor Great?

Norwich, Norfolk

Dig up the past with archaeology experts to explore the Roman history of Caistor St Edmund, once known to the Romans as Venta Icenorum. The Caistor Roman Project was established in 2009 in partnership with the University of Nottingham, with aim to investigate the history of the site and encourage community engagement in local archaeological research. For the festival, visitors young and old can learn about life in Roman Norfolk at the Caistor Roman Town, perhaps including new discoveries following the excavation taking place this Summer. Join the resident archaeologist in digging up a skeleton, chat to members of the Project and the Norfolk Archaeological Trust, and use their app to see the Roman Town in 3D as you follow trails around the site.

Check out the Greek artefacts in Reading

Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology

Reading, Berkshire

The Ure Museum of Greek Archaeology, based at the University of Reading, houses the fourth largest collection of Greek ceramics in the UK, with over 2000 items on display. Here you can gain insight into the world of the Greeks and their daily life through the extraordinary collection, thematically ranging from myth and religion to warfare and death. Their event is also the ideal chance for the whole family to engage with archaeology, as the museum explores the history of how archaeology was presented to children in a talk on published works, before giving you the chance to create your own book on the subject on the next day.

Open Day at Ruardean Hill Archaeological Dig

Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire

For the rare opportunity to experience an excavation in action, join Worcestershire Archaeology for their open dig in Ruardean. The Forest of Dean has had a surge of archaeological interest in the past five years, with excavations in the area making discoveries mostly from Roman and medieval periods, as well as some items dating back to the Victorian era. In 2018 alone, archaeologists found evidence of a Roman Settlement in a nearby town and uncovered the medieval origins of Ruardean Castle. Join them at this dig to see first-hand what they discover next.

Explore the Oriental Museum's collection of art and archaeology from Northern Africa and Asia

Oriental Museum

Durham, County Durham

Looking at archaeology on a global scale, the Oriental Museum in Durham is the perfect place to learn more. Being the only museum in the North dedicated to North African and Asian archaeology, you’ll find a diverse collection with a bit of everything, from Ancient Egyptian artefacts to Japanese Armour to Indian paintings. Make the most of the free entry during the festival - or perhaps attend the curator-led tour on the 21st September - to explore different cultures, their rich histories, and the archaeological discoveries that have been made throughout time.

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