Location: Bamburgh, Northumberland, United Kingdom
Bradford Kaims Wetlands Field School runs between June 8th and August 1st, 2015. Work starts Monday June 8th 2015. Prices are £250.00 per week if paying by cash or cheque (advance payment necessary) or + 4% if you wish to pay via PayPal (available as a booking option on our website) www.bamburghresearchproject.co.uk
For year round details of us please go to our blog: http://bamburghresearchproject.wordpress.com/ full details of our last season are on there if you go back through the articles.
Students book using the online booking form on the ‘Field School’ section of our website or email the project director or coordinator:
The Bradford Kaims project has been running since 2010 and is a project run as part of Bamburgh Research Project, with collaborations from the local community and University of Stirling's palaeo-environmentalist Dr. Richard Tipping. The project was supported in 2012 by English Heritage and the National Lottery scheme.
The BRP also runs a concurrent summer field school at the nearby Bamburgh Castle, Northumberland, UK. Participants get to excavate on both sites, experiencing the very different styles of excavation and investiagtion that each site demands. If you wish to spend your time at just one of our sites, this is possible.
The wetland itself is known as Newham bog, an ancient wetland that formed following the retreat of glaciation 12,000 years ago. Our investigations so far have revealed a promontory reaching out into the bog that has evidence of human activity around the edge of the marshy lake. We have uncovered two massive features that have been interpreted as Burnt mounds. These Bronze age features are fascinating and there are several theories about what function they served, from prehistoric saunas, to smoking meat and fish, and even brewing.
In addition to the mounds there are further cut features including pits, and slab hearths or troughs. Finds from the sites include many Neolithic flints and even an Aurochs bone preserved in the peat. We are hoping we may be able to locate weirs or even jetties in the waterlogged deposits around the lake edge, as excavation progresses. The kaims site offers a completely different digging experience for students, and we are lucky to be working with Dr. Richard Tipping from the University of Stirling, who has joined us to conduct extensive environmental sampling of the wetland landscape, using deep peat cores to chart the landscape changes the the end of glaciation. This is also a very fun activity with immediate results as you can see the changes from clay to marl to peat bands very clearly. With geophysics results showing many more potential early features of human activity, this is a good year to get involved in this expanding part of the project.
The project is open to ANYONE - as full training will be provided.
You can also find us through the following links:
our website: www.bamburghresearchproject.co.uk
YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/bamburghmedia
Twitter @ http://twitter.com/brparchaeology
Period(s) of Occupation: Mesolithic to Bronze Age
Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 1 week
Room and Board Arrangements
Camping accommodation is included in the fees and is located at Bluebell Farm Camping and Caravan Park. They have full facilities in the village of Belford just 5 miles from Bamburgh Castle. The campsite has a toilet block with showers, washbasins & WCs, self catering cottages, free wireless internet access, and secure storage. A service wash arrangement is available at an additional charge on-site, or you can use the public laundrette at the end of the campsite driveway.
Please bring your own tent. Tent size is restricted to a 2-man tent per person. If you are going to share, you may bring a larger tent up to a 4-man size, but large family/compartment tents are not permitted. If you have a special need for a larger tent please contact us directly.
Storage space will be available, so if you have lots of baggage we should be able to store it for you. If you are coming from overseas we may be able to purchase a tent on your behalf or take delivery of one you order online.
We do not provide food but there are full cooking facilities available including a modest kitchen in the staff accommodation which students may use, and a BBQ beside a covered veranda which is available daily for your use as well as additional BBQ facilities throughout the camping area. We will host a weekly BBQ. We provide the fire, you bring whatever you want to throw on – this usually happens at the beginning of the week to help new students settle in. A daily prepared packed lunch is available from the campsite for a modest cost if you don’t want to make your own, which you should order in advance at the campsite reception.
There are numerous amenities within the village. Food outlets include take aways/restaurant/bar meals; there are three pubs, a golf club, community club, coffee shop, farm shop, and resource centre. The local shops include a post office, launderette, newsagents and small licensed supermarket, open 07.00 to 22.00 daily. There is a Doctor's surgery, dental surgery and chemist within the village. We will also have daily access to the local village club for events and socialising, and this has a games room, function hall and bar. They plan to host weekly events such as discos and karaoke for our benefit, and we will be able to have our weekly quiz and lectures there.
We are camping at Bluebell Farm Camping and Caravan Park. This is where you need to get to when you arrive at the project. This campsite is situated in the historic village of Belford, easily accessible by car or bus from the main A1 trunk road between Newcastle and Edinburgh. Buses run regularly from the mainline train station at Berwick upon Tweed about 15 miles to the north. The campsite address is: Bluebell Farm, West Street, Belford, Northumberland, NE70 7QE Tel: 01668 213362 www.bluebellfarmbelford.com
There are many different kinds of alternate accommodation in the local area, including other campsites, caravan sites, bed and breakfasts, hotels and self catering holiday cottages. There are even static caravans and holiday cottages available though Bluebell farm in Belford where we are staying. You need to contact them directly to book. A list of such places is located at the bottom of our Accommodation page.
An important part of any dig is the social side, getting to know new people from all over the world who have a common interest in archaeology. Our aim is that the experience of Bamburgh Research Project is both educational and highly enjoyable for all participants. All of our social events are open to all participants regardless of whether or not you choose to camp with us, but unfortunately we cannot normally offer transport between the campsite and private accommodations. Luckily, Belford is well positioned on bus routes and there are local taxi firms.
Academic CreditNumber of credits offered : We offer to write a detailed Student Assessment for our those seeking credit through their University. Credit is not automatic. You must discuss with your University and then inform our staff on your arrival day if you will require an assessment.
Sarah Groves, Philip Wood, Graeme Young, The Bowl Hole Early Medieval Cemetery at Bamburgh, Excavations 1998 to 1999, Archaeologia Aeliana, Fifth Series, Volume XXXVIII, 2009, Newcastle upon Tyne
Bennet, M. and K. L. R. Pedersen, A Neolithic Polished Flint Axehead from Near Louth, Lincolnshire History and Archaeology, 35:56:00, 2000,
Waddington, Clive & Kristian Pedersen (editors), Mesolithic Studies in the North Sea Basin and Beyond: Proceedings of a Conference Held at Newcastle in 2003., 2007, Oxford: Oxbow Books
Waddington, Clive, Geoff Bailey, Alex Bayliss, Ian Boomer, Nicky Milner, Kristian Pedersen, Robert Shiel and Tony Stevenson, A Mesolithic Settlement at Howick, Northumberland: A Preliminary Report, Archaeologia Aeliana (5th Series), 32: 3-12, 2003, Newcastle upon Tyne
Milner, N., O. Craig, G. Bailey, K. Pedersen & S.H. Andersen, Something Fishy in the Neolithic ? An Assessment of the Use of Stable Isotopes in the Reconstruction of Subsistence, Antiquity, 78: 299, 2004,