The origins of Old St Oswald Church, Fulford

Many a church guide claims that their present building sits on the site of a more ancient structure. But how accurate are these claims? Recently the Fishergate, Fulford, and Heslington Local History Society (FFH) – a community group with a long-standing and very active interest in their historic landscape –…

Illuminating Isurium: exploring Aldborough’s Roman remains

Isurium Brigantum was a thriving and prosperous Roman town in what is now North Yorkshire, but it has attracted relatively little modern archaeological attention. Now, though, a decade of geophysical surveys have shed vivid light on its make-up, and a wide-ranging new book presents a compelling narrative for how the…

The Havering hoard

Two years ago, London’s largest Bronze Age hoard was discovered on the eastern fringe of the city. It is now on display at the Museum of London Docklands. What do its contents tell us about life in the Thames river valley 3,000 years ago? Current Archaeology's Carly…

Investigating the age of the Cerne Abbas hill figure

The Cerne Abbas Giant, a 55m-tall chalk hill figure depicting a nude man, has been in the care of the National Trust for 100 years. To mark this anniversary, small-scale excavations retrieved dating samples from the Dorset landmark – and, although the present lockdown has put analysis on hold, intriguing…

Bronze Age burials at Lechlade skatepark

Archaeological investigations in Lechlade-on-Thames, Gloucestershire, have revealed two very unusual Bronze Age burials in an extensive ceremonial landscape spanning many phases of prehistory. The excavations were carried out by Foundations Archaeology in 2017, in advance of the construction of a new skatepark, but post-excavation work is now complete, and the…

News in brief

British Museum revamps Collection Online The British Museum has recently launched a new version of its Collection Online website, featuring over half its collections, making it one of the largest such databases of any global museum. The updated resource encompasses nearly 4.5 million objects and 1.9 million images, including 85,000…

X-ray analysis of chainmail from the Mary Rose

Analysis by X-ray of three copper-alloy artefacts recovered from the wreck of the Mary Rose has offered new insight into their construction and the success of conservation efforts undertaken on them. Henry VIII’s flagship, the Mary Rose, was constructed in 1509 and sank in the Solent on 19 July 1545,…

Letters from CA May 2020/June 2020

Early insights into Callanish Site XI I was an active amateur archaeologist on the Isle of Lewis between 1975 and 1984, working with Margaret Curtis, who was then my wife. She remained on the island when I relocated to my native Hampshire. Our studies mainly focused on the Standing Stones…

Association of British Counties (ABC)

The Royal Mail (see Sherds, p.64) no longer regards county names as part of your postal address, a fact that the Association of British Counties – set up ‘to promote awareness of the continuing importance of the 92 historic (or traditional) counties of the United Kingdom’ – regards as a…

Alderney’s concentration camp uncovered

An archaeological project on Alderney has uncovered information about the labour and concentration camp of Sylt that once stood on the island, shedding light on the lives of prisoners during the Nazi occupation of the Channel Islands in the Second World War. Historical records indicate that Sylt was initially established…

12th-century lead pollution visible in Alpine ice

Lead pollution produced by 12th-century mines in Britain can be seen in Alpine ice cores, new research reports – directly mirroring historical records and demonstrating the impact of political events of the time. Lead-silver ores have been mined for centuries, for use in the production of diverse objects such as…

Medieval carvings found in cave near Guildford

A possible 14th-century shrine adorned with medieval carvings has been discovered in a cave following a landslip near Guildford. The initial discovery was made by rail workers from Osborne carrying out repair works on behalf of Network Rail, after which the cave was investigated by a team from Archaeology South-East…

World News: Mexico, Australia, Ethiopia

On the Maya road The first LiDAR study of the longest road in the Maya area has shed new light on settlement in Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula. The 100km- long Sacbe 1 was built in the 7th century AD and connected the city of Cobá, which controlled the eastern peninsula, and…

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