Archaeologists have returned to Elizabeth Castle, located in the parish of Saint Helier in Jersey, to carry out preliminary investigations of its historic structures ahead of vital restoration work.
Jersey Heritage, the caretaker of the castle, has been granted funding in the Government Plan of 2021 to lay the groundwork for the first phase of the conservation project, which involves restoring the Officers’ Quarters and the Hospital Block.
Subject to funding, the renovation of the Officers’ Quarters is also set to return the building to its original use as accommodation.
‘The other building being looked at is the Library and, once archaeological survey is complete, we will be carrying out repairs to make it safe for the public to visit and creating an exhibit about the building’s former uses,’ said Jonathan Carter, Jersey Heritage’s Chief Executive.
Last week, archaeologists Dav Smith, from the University of York, and Susan Brook were at Elizabeth Castle carrying out photographic and measurement surveys.
The work is a continuation of investigations started in 2017 by the University of York to deepen our understanding of the castle’s history, which included excavations on the Green where the remains of a 17th-century barracks were revealed.
‘Elizabeth Castle has an incredibly rich history uncovering multiple time periods and it will be fascinating to see what information these latest surveys reveal to us,’ said Dav Smith. ‘We can’t bring students with us this year to carry out excavation work in the field as we have done in the past, but we’re glad to be able to return to Jersey for the first time in two years.’