National recognition for Northumberland ancient history
From The Journal online:
Seventeen of the mysterious cup and ring carvings in Northumberland have been scheduled as Ancient Monuments by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport following advice from English Heritage... continues...
Durham County Council's Archaeology Department 3rd Annual Conference
Saturday 10 March 2007, 9:50am-4.30pm
Durham County Council's Archaeology Department will be holding its 3rd Annual Conference. The day will offer talks on recent archaeological discoveries, community excavations, recording and research... continues...
Three amber beads, two bronze rings, a bugle-shaped fitting and a fragment of a spearhead, found six inches below ground in a field near Sedgefield, County Durham, are thought to have been part of an ancient burial ceremony... continues...
Rock Art project officer Tertia Barnett said: "It is
fascinating work and we are uncovering more all the time. Help from volunteers has been invaluable so far and we are looking to recruit more... continues...
Examples of rock art are to be recorded with '3D laser scanning' as part of the Northumberland and Durham rock art project. This is being funded and co-ordinated by the two county councils and English Heritage.
The project's main aim is to develop new and undamaging approaches to recording and conserving rock art... continues...
Experts have uncovered evidence of Iron Age houses and pottery dating from around 100 BC at a major Tyneside development.
Residents at the Newcastle Great Park (NGP) development are learning about their Iron Age counterparts after the latest archaeological work on the site uncovered evidence of an ancient settlement... continues...
Don't know if this will turn out to be another misunderstanding (like this) but some strange carvings have been found near Wooler in Northumberland. Mr Beckinsall's on the case though:
BBC News site at http://news.bbc... continues...
History of the Berwickshire Naturalists' Club, volume 9 (1879-81) - has a list of "The named Stones of Northumberland; being a list of huge stones, single and in groups, in situ and detached, to which local names have been given in the County." by G. A. Lebour.
This website is the celebration of rock carvings made by Neolithic and Early Bronze Age people in Northumberland in the north east of England, between 6000 and 3500 years ago. Over 1000 carved panels are known and most of them are still located in the countryside.
The website is also a celebration of the work of Stan Beckensall who has spent 40 years finding and recording this ancient rock art. For many years Beckensall shared his knowledge and recordings of Northumberland rock art through public talks, conference presentations, and richly illustrated publications. Now we have the World Wide Web!
It is our hope that the information and images presented in this website will encourage greater enjoyment of this cultural resource; inspire the creation of new knowledge and insights into Northumberland and British rock art; and set the basis for the effective management and conservation of this ancient resource for future generations.
Listen to Aubrey Manning's 'Unearthing Mysteries' programme on the tri-radial cairns of Northumbria.
About 20 have been found (some are at Lordenshaw. The three arms of the cairns are aligned in the same way; one pointing north and the others at 140 and 240 degrees (SE and SW). That means they could be pointers to the mid-summer and midwinter sunrise and sunset. It's thought that they're Bronze Age.
Searchable lists of prehistoric sites for both Durham and Northumberland. Not a lot of info, but good maps available, and ref numbers for each site, to let people send them requests for more detailed info. Includes a few potential sites that aren't on the SMR or the RSM. Nb: Durham and Northumberland only.
Yeavering, Ad Gefrin, Lordenshaws and the North Cheviots with original photographs and panoramas. Ths site is under development by BoC (Modern Antiquarian member) in collaboration with Paul Frodsham, archaeologist with the Northumberland National Park.
Birney Hill (Cup and Ring Marks / Rock Art) — Fieldnotes
A large cup-and-ring marked boulder was found in 2014 during building operations at Birney Hill just south of Darras Hall, an area of proposed housing development surrounding Birney Hall. It was acquired by the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne in early 2015. The building company whose workers uncovered the stone, Wardell Armstrong, transported it to a site near the south door of the Great North Museum (Hancock) in Newcastle upon Tyne.
The sandstone rock, weighing nearly 3 tonnes, is decorated with distinctive cup and ring symbols. Archaeologists thought that it was unlikely that the rock was originally from that location as it is clearly a part of a much larger rock that had been recut. It is possible that it was brought to Birney Hill from another location as quarried building stone.
Northumberland SMR abstract for Bygate Hill (10236)
(Marginal) A double circle of stones, reported by Mr Surtees to have stood until recently (1827) on Heddon Hill, a mile south west of West Belsay. The inner circle was 60 yards in diameter, and the outer, concentric with it, and from 15 to 20 yards from it. At the centre was a standing stone 10ft high. When Mr Surtees last visited the ground the circles had apparently been levelled, 'the large stone cut into gateposts, and the smaller ones into materials for and adjoining sunk fence'. The view is very extensive especially towards the east. (1)
(Marginal) 'Some ancient earthworks and hut circles' on Heddon Hill, now called Bygate Hill. 'These we believe to be the remains referred to by Mr Hodgson, which, if he had seen them himself, he would not have called them concentric circles. As we were accompanied by George Wilkinson, who built the sunk wall to which Mr Hodgson alludes, it is probable that we were on the right spot, indeed, our guide pointed out some holes from which the stones had been taken'. The remains consisted of an enclosure, hexagonal in shape and containing about 2.5 roods. 'The circular parts, which are formed, like the principal enclosure, of earth and stones, are placed together at the north west.... One, more elevated than the rest, has more the appearance of a beacon than a hut circle, and has not escaped the Ordnance Surveyors'. (There is no beacon marked on OS 6! 1865. The trig station at NZ 06817702 is possibly meant). The older inhabitants had no knowledge of the circles described by Hodgson. (2)
Bygate Hill was possibly an early camp. (3)
NZ 06837705. An earth bank, situated on the highest part of Bygate Hill in an all-round commanding position close to the trig station, probably represents the works referred to above. The hill is covered by a dense fir plantation. The bank is visible across a fire-break and can be traced for a few metres into the plantation, but the trees are too dense for a survey to be made. (4)
No trace of the earthworks can now be recognised owing to the density of the plantation. (5)
(1) Hodgson, J.C., 1827. History of Northumberland, part 2, vol.1 (363-4
(2) MacLauchlan, H. 1864. Survey of Eastern Branch of the Watling Street (Newcastle upon Tyne), 8-9
(3) Dodds, M.H. 1926. A History of Northumberland, vol.12 (Newcastle upon Tyne), 13-14