Jim Attacks - from the Iron Age group, Creswell Crags Visitor Centre, NAW 2007. Copyright Oliver Brown, Creswell Heritage Trust.
People all over the country will be exploring Britain’s rich heritage this July. National Archaeology week, running from July 12 – 20 offers the chance to get hands on and discover your local archaeology hot spots. Look out in your area for excavation days, family fun days, tours, lectures, craft workshops and much more.
“Archaeology is something that absolutely everyone can get involved with, from young children to grandparents, but often it can be quite difficult to get started,” explains Mike Heyworth, Director of the CBA. “National Archaeology Week really opens the subject up, with activities in every corner of the country looking at local projects and historic sites.”
In Norfolk many unique events are planned for the national week, with much of the fun also extended further to coincide with local school holidays. Norwich is a fitting place to celebrate the heritage themed week, boasting the largest surviving medieval street pattern in Europe and a world-famous Norman castle.
West Stow archaeology event. © St. Edmundsbury Borough Council Heritage Service
Norwich Castle and Museum offers a special archaeology week event for over 55s. Become an archaeologist for the day on July 17 at an informal, hands-on session allowing people to investigate Anglo-Saxon artefacts first-hand.
Open to everyone, are behind the scenes tours of the Castle’s archaeology stores on July 14 and 15. Pre booking is required for both events.
In neighbouring county Suffolk you can travel back in time at West Stow Anglo Saxon Village. The Archaeology Day on Sunday 13 July (10am to 5pm) will include activities and demonstrations of Anglo-Saxon crafts such as pottery. Those attending the day will also have a unique opportunity to discover more about a wealth of archaeological finds.
Anglo Saxon Display at Norwich Castle. © Norwich HEART
Also in East Anglia, Colchester Castle Museum, Essex hosts an event charted as one of the Council for Archaeology’s top 12 for this year. An exhibition of 43 miniature terracotta figures will be arriving all the way from Jiangsu Province, China. Be the first to view the new arrivals when the new exhibition opens on 19 July at 10am.
Look out for further events this summer holiday, as local heritage venues pull out all the stops to grab children’s attention. Families can enjoy Ancient House Museum of Thetford Life’s Awful Archaeology Day on 30 July. This event runs from 10-12:30, booking required. Budding archaeologists can follow the clues and discover the secrets of a Roman burial!
For further information about National Archaeology Week please see: www.nationalarchaeologyweek.org.uk or call 01904 671417.
Katie Brinkley is the 24 Hour Museum/Norwich HEART Student Writer in Norwich. Norwich Heritage Economic and Regeneration Trust (HEART) is the groundbreaking initiative to regenerate, manage and promote one of the most remarkable heritage resources in the UK and in Europe.