Don’t forget that the rescheduled Dover Regatta takes place on Sunday (30th). Find the replica boat close to the Sea Sports Centre where you can book a trip around the harbour from 10.00 am until around 3.30 pm – wind and tides allowing!
The first season of the training school at East Wear Bay came to a close last week and so much was found that the team can hardly wait to get back up on the cliffs for the second season next year!
As well as a late Iron Age and Roman quern manufacturing area, students excavated a late Iron Age round-house and an enigmatic stone slab structure which appeared to be associated within it. Several large ditches were also recorded, some of which appeared to pre-date the quern manufacturing area. Amongst the finds were coins and brooches, of Iron Age and Roman date, and a mysterious iron object which remains to be identified.
Initial plans were to open a new area for the second season, but with so much tantalising archaeology left for students to reveal in this first area, it will probably be extended and remain the focus of activities next year.
You can now follow the progress of the excavation at Woolcomber Street from a viewing platform. Do drop by and take a peek.
The field school at East Wear Bay is now entering its third week and is going great guns. By the end of the first week a mass of Iron Age and Roman features had already come to light including an actual quern production area – a great find. A compact layer of chippings and dust from manufacture was uncovered, along with discarded querns in various stages of production, as you can in the photographs.
Take a look at the photos to see what else the students have been up to. Or take a trip to Folkestone for the day and see for yourself! The site is on East Wear Bay Road (CT19 9PR).
Full details of the Medieval Canterbury Weekend are now available on the Canterbury Christ Church University website
Tickets: £10.00 per event, FCAT members £8.00 per event
“Formidable”, “Fantastique”, “Incroyable”, were typical responses among the hundreds, if not thousands, of visitors who enjoyed seeing and hearing about the reconstruction of the Dover Bronze Age boat at this popular marine festival held at Boulogne. The festival’s full programme of activities associated with marine culture stretched around the Quai Gambetta and Napoleon dock keeping the many local Boulonnais and tourists entertained. Fête de la Mer is a biannual event attracting typically hundreds of thousands of visitors over its five days with live music, demonstrations and displays, sea trips and opportunities to try all manner of sea foods.
On this occasion, at the seventh Fête de la Mer to be staged, our role was to talk to the many visitors about the discovery of the Dover Bronze Age boat, the building and voyages of the experimental reconstruction and the associated project, Boat 1550 BC. The boat attracted huge interest with people genuinely in awe of the diverse skills of our Bronze Age ancestors – and of those who built the replica! We did a fine job of engaging the French, Swiss, Dutch and Belgian visitors and the two non-native French speakers in our small team had loads of opportunity to practice spoken French during the 10 hour days. Peter and Marion are now fluent in talking about willow withies and beeswax – pas de problème!
This was the first time the replica boat had been back to Boulogne since it was the centrepiece of the exhibition ‘Beyond the Horizon’ in the Chateau-Musée back in 2012. It was a great pleasure to meet up once again with our colleagues Angélique, Séverine, Dominique and Laurent with whom we had worked so hard on staging the exhibition. They were thrilled to have the boat back for a few days, now a battered and worn working boat quite different to the pristine exhibit that was on show in the museum! It was most heart-warming to see that the spirit of camaraderie and international co-operation is still alive and well even after the end of the BOAT 1550 BC project!
The Fête was organised by the Town of Boulogne-sur-Mer, the Conseil Régional de Nord-Pas-de-Calais and the Conseil Général de Pas-de-Calais.
We have been sent the programme [PDF] for Gesoriacum/Bononia, between land and sea, a conference taking place in Boulogne, 24th and 25th September. Andrew Richardson’s paper, ’The view from the bay: exchange, production and settlement at East Wear Bay, Folkestone, during the late Iron Age and Roman periods’ will undoubtedly include findings from new work at the villa. The East Wear Bay Archaeological Field School starts today!
|Boat 1550 BC|
|Ename Heritage Centre|
|The Historical Association|
|The Festival of British Archaeology|
|Canterbury Heritage Museum|
|Centre for Research in Kent History and Archaeology|
|A Town Unearthed: Folkestone before 1500|
|Kent Archaeological Society|
|White Cliffs Countryside Partnership|
|Wye Rural Museum Trust|