Volunteers wanted for Swaledale archaeology dig

Volunteers at an earlier dig at Hagg Farm in Swaledale.

Volunteers are wanted from across Richmondshire to increase understanding of a Romano-British site that may have links to the Roman centre at Catterick.

The Swaledale and Arkengarthdale Archaeology Group (SWAAG) has been awarded a grant from the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority’s Sustainable Development Fund to undertake a large dig this July at Hagg Farm, Fremington.

The dig will focus on opening up a large area across the site, as well as offering an opportunity to explore below the layer at which the site was abandoned to investigate the origins and development of the site.

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Philip Bastow who is managing the project said thanks to David Clarke and his family who own the Hagg, SWAAG had explored different areas and revealed evidence of possible roundhouses, enclosures and walls.

The finds suggest that the site was Romano-British and abandoned towards the end of the 4th century AD.

However, there is no evidence as to when the site was established or how it was developed and indeed we are not even sure what it was for.

Philip said: “I am confident that this is a major site and of great significance for Swaledale.

“We need to find out more and may be able to link the site to the era of trade and prosperity that arose following Roman development at Catterick.”

He added: “This is very much a community project and we would like as much support as possible from local volunteers with an interest in archaeology. We can provide all the training, we just want their enthusiasm.”

Areas which will be dug during the July event.

Anyone interested in taking part should contact SWAAG at info@SWAAG.org, There are no charges for participation and all equipment and training will be provided.

There will be an opportunity to learn more about the site, the opportunities for participation in the dig and to talk to members of SWAAG, on Saturday 24th June between 2pm and 4pm in the Reeth Memorial Hall.

If you do not wish to dig but would like to visit the site please join our guided walk.

It will leave from the Reeth bus shelter at 10.00 am on Sat 15th July and is a round trip of some 4miles. Please contact info@SWAAG.org for details.

For more information on any aspects of the SWAAG and the dig please visit our website at www.SWAAG.org

The Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority’s Sustainable Development Fund is open to individuals, business, community groups or voluntary sector bodies.

It provides an accessible source of money for a range of projects that result in positive benefits for the National Park’s environment, economy and communities, while enhancing and conserving local culture, wildlife and landscape.

For more details, please go to www.yorkshiredales.org.uk/sdf