Festival of British Archaeology

National Parks across the UK are looking forward to welcoming more visitors than ever this summer as people decide to holiday at home.

With National Parks Week coming up at the end of the month, 26 July to the 1 August 2010, and the  2010 Festival of Archaeology  also in the same week, there will be plenty to enjoy then and throughout the summer months.

Windermere in the Lake District National Park

Investigate Galava Roman Fort near Windermere

A full list of events taking place around the country as part of the 2010 Festival of Archaeology can be found  on the Council for British Archaeology website.

Details of National Parks week can be found on the National Parks website

The Festival of British Archaeology 2010, runs from Saturday 17th July to Sunday 1st August and thousands of budding archaeologists are expected to attend more than 750 digs, walks, talks, family fun and activity days across the UK, discovering Britain’s extraordinary past.

It is celebrating its 20th year of ‘Archaeology for All’ and is the biggest ever UK-wide extravaganza of archaeological and heritage events, which are open to everyone and are held to encourage everyone to take more of an active interest in their past.
Events to enjoy during the week  include:

  • Finding Galava – Wed 28 July, 2010 14.00–16.00

A fun, family discovery walk going back in time at Galava Roman Fort, which is situated in a stunning location on the shores of Windermere, just on the outskirts of Ambleside. Families will have the chance to explore the site with the help of the local National Trust Community Learning Officer, to uncover why the fort was built, piece together what the fort would have looked like and find out what was going on here during the Roman army’s conquest of northern Britain from the 2nd to the 4th Century AD.

  • Fire Breathing Dragons and Pans of Gold – from Pinkery to Chapman Barrows – Friday 23 July

This walk uncovers 5000 years of history in one of Exmoor’s most evocative landscapes. Join a National Park Archaeologist to explore aspects of the reclamation of the Royal Forest and then up on to the Chains to look at the prehistoric burial and ritual monuments and to learn about recent discoveries there.
Walkers should wear sturdy walking boots, appropriate outdoor clothing and bring a picnic. Meet at pull-in near Goat Hill Bridge SS724403 at 11am (finish approx. 3pm). Dogs are welcome, call 01398 322289 for more information.

  • Roman Mosaic Making – Saturday 24 July, 11am – 3pm.

A chance for people to come along and learn about Roman mosaics and to make their own Roman style mosaic. Places are limited and pre booking is required by calling 01398 322289, cost £2 per person to cover materials.

  • Timberscombe Hillfort Open Days – Friday 30th and Saturday 31 July, 10am to 3pm – everyone welcome!

Exmoor National Park Archaeologists and local volunteers will be investigating the Iron Age Hillfort near Timberscombe offering a chance to find out more about the reality of life in Exmoor’s Iron Age some 2500 years ago. On hand to bring history to life will be Iron Age re-enactors, an Iron Age blacksmith plus demonstrations of geophysical surveying, wood-turning and tours of the hillfort.   Parking available in Timberscombe or at SS955412 (field adjacent to site) access is restricted in poor weather.

A busy week in the National Parks

Other events in National Parks include ‘Hands on Heritage’ in Dartmoor National Park – with activities, quizzes, dig boxes and demonstrations; an art workshop in Snowdonia National Park; a medieval fayre in Pembrokeshire Coast National Park and a tour of some of the places that inspired Sir Walter Scott’s epic poem ‘The Lady of the Lake’ in Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park.

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