banner image

Headlines from the Home page and other stories

19th December 2012

We would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Details of our office closure over the holidays - Our offices will be closed on the 25th and 26th December and the 1st January; otherwise we will be open throughout the Christmas period, although with limited staff availability.

Staff held at her majesties pleasure! - a monitoring and recording work undertaken recently at Durham Prison in advance of the construction of a new healthcare centre. Luckily all have subsequently been released!

Roker Pier
We have just completed a building survey of Roker Pier and lighthouse. Check out our Facebook page for photographs.

NAA support Water Aid - every year we like to make a donation to WA rather than sending out client Christmas cards. Go to the Just Giving page if you would like to donate.

Update on Yorkshire Dales Moorland survey.
Last month, our survey teams undertook a second phase of moorland surveys commissioned by the Yorkshire Peat Partnership as part of the grip blocking conservation work being completed across the Yorkshire Dales. The aims of the survey were to provide a record of any archaeological remains and historic features within the proposed consolidation areas; evaluate the significance of these sites; assess any potential impact from the restoration works, and advise on a suitable strategy to prevent any accidental damage to the archaeology during the consolidation works.

In advance of the fieldwork, we combined all available data from English Heritage (NMR) and the Parks Authority (HER), together with information found on modern aerial photographs and First, Second and Third Edition Ordnance Survey maps , to build up a comprehensive picture of the archaeology we might find. This information was compiled into a Geographical Information System (GIS) prior to survey commencing, and loaded on a palm computer which the teams could update in the field. All identified archaeological sites were visited during the survey and their vulnerability to potential damage during the groundworks was assessed. Any previously unknown archaeological remains were also recorded and their vulnerability similarly evaluated.

A total of 83 heritage assets were identified and surveyed, including 26 newly discovered sites, expanding the existing knowledge and understanding of the archaeology of Nidderdale. The overwhelming majority of the archaeology was post-medieval in date, and related to agricultural features (sheepfolds, shepherd huts and peat cutting), land ownership (boundary stones and cairns) and grouse shooting (including shooting lodges, butts, and pens for the grouse). However, features relating to the prehistoric landscape (settlement and possible round cairn) were also noted within the northern end of the survey area, on land at a higher elevation and relatively undisturbed by later activity. A WWII air crash site was visited and recorded; this is protected by law.

Go to our Facebook page to view a gallery of photographs taken during the survey.
back to top

14th November 2012

Out and about in Yorkshire - NAA about to start a new phase of landscape survey across the Yorkshire Dales.
Moving into winter 2012 we are about break out the thermals in preparation for a new phase of wide area survey across the Yorkshire Dales. There are three key projects kicking off in the next few weeks and our survey teams are busy prepping maps, uploading information on the data loggers and dubbing their walking boots.

Two surveys will be undertaken later this month as part of the ongoing programme of grip blocking being undertaken by the Yorkshire Peat Partnerships (YPP). Deep channels - known as grips- were dug extensively across the uplands in the post war period to improve drainage and advance land reclamation. However, ultimately these schemes failed and now the grips are contributing to the erosion of internationally significant peat habitat. To address these issues, YPP are blocking the grips in order to allow the peat to gradually recover and re-establish. NAA will be surveying sections of the moors in advance of this remedial work to ensure that there is no threat to the archaeology of the area. Initially work will begin at Nidderdale, subsequently moving to parts of Raydale. This programme of work follows on from the West Arkengarthdale Survey complete by NAA in 2011-12.

In addition to the YPP surveys, we are also about to embark on an archaeological wide area survey of Grassington Moor. This will be the culmination of several months work looking at how LIDAR survey can be used to enhance a better understanding of the moor, in particular the extensive mining remains. LIDAR is an effective, and relatively new, remote survey technology which has the potential to considerably enhance the archaeological record of the Dales. New sites have been plotted using LIDAR data together with more traditional aerial photography and over the next couple of weeks the survey teams will be out testing this 'on the ground' by visiting and checking all the sites identified. This information will then be entered onto the Yorkshire Dales Park Authority Historic Environment Record (HER) and used to inform the future conservation and management of the moor.

back to top

English Heritage 'Protect our Place' campaign website is now live,
check it out at
Protect our Place is a national campaign to discover what action is being undertaken to protect and promote local places. The intention is to encourage local community groups to upload projects onto an interactive map allowing others to see what is going on in their area, and get involved. This is a great way to get hands on experience of a range of heritage activities and projects. Check it out and see what is going on in your area.

back to top

At topping day at Roseberry Ironstone Mine in the North York Moors National Parks
As part of our work on the HLS funded monument management scheme (MMS) undertaken for the North York Moors National Park, we have been out surveying the remains of Roseberry Ironstone mine. Situated in the lee of Roseberry Topping, the mine was first established in the mid 19th century, although most of the surviving remains date to the last phase of operation in the early 20th century when it was run under the auspices of The Tees Furnace Company. The landslip which gives The Topping its distinctive shape has often been attributed to the ironstone mining below; a claim vehemently denied by the mine's owners at the time. A number of features were recorded during the survey including the remains of a rather fine railway incline in the wood to the south-west of the main mine. The survey will inform a management plan with the intention of stabilizing and preserving the remains of the mine, hopefully for years to come. If you have relatives who worked at the mine in its heyday, or have any pictures or additional information, then drop us a line at

back to top

Tucked under the A1 flyover, a little piece of Durham's industrial heritage Situated on a curving stretch of the Lumley Park Burn, just underneath the A1 flyover near Chester-le-Street, are the remains of Lumley Forge, an 18th century wrought iron forge once belonging to Hawks and Co. one of the biggest iron manufacturers in the North East, and responsible for both the High Level Bridge and Sunderland Bridge. Follow the link to read the full article.

back to top

Update on Roman building remains in York,
Archaeological monitoring of sewer repairs in Toft Green, York, on behalf of Yorkshire Water Services Ltd, has revealed the remains of two or three Roman buildings, one of which had a mosaic floor. Although relatively plain, consisting of parallel bands of blue and green tesserae (tiles), it is likely that this mosaic was within the same building that housed the 'sea-bull' mosaic. Now located in the Yorkshire Museum, the sea-bull mosaic was found during 19th-century excavations, accompanied by a dedication stone recording the building of the temple of Serapis, an eastern deity. The recent excavations also recovered large numbers of pot sherds, including fragments of amphorae, Roman coins, and a bone hair-pin. For more information on the Toft Green mosaics visit the Yorkshire Museum website: More updates on the project to follow..

mosaic floor

back to top

24th September 2012

Paul and Gail are presenting a paper at this weekend's Royal Archaeological Institute, Annual Conference - Legacies of Northumbria.
The Royal Archaeological Institute Annual Conference 2012 is being held this year at the Mining Institute in Newcastle from the 28th of September to the 1st October. Entitled, The Legacies of Northumbria: Recent Thinking on the 5th - 14th Centuries in Northern Britaina various papers will be presented which explore a number of key themes including:

  • The legacy of Rome and the prehistoric north during the formation of 5th and 6th century chiefdoms
  • The Golden Age of Northumbria
  • Northumbria in the Viking Age
  • The role of Northumbrian culture in the High Medieval period
NAA Project Manager, Paul Johnson, together with Gail Hama, our Post Excavation Manager, will be presenting a paper entitled: From Bedsteads to Boxes: the continuing association of Furniture with Death in the mid Anglo-Saxon periods, on Saturday the 29th
Further details on the event, and a booking form, are available on the RAI website

Heritage Gateway has now been now updated with results from the recent Gunby Hall Parkland Survey for the National Trust. For more information click here

back to top

13th September 2012

Go Explore History on Your Doorstep, Heritage Open Days running 6th-9th September. Check the website for details Heritage Open Days.

With a continuous programme of fieldwork we are looking for site assistants to join our team on short term contracts. If you are interested in applying please contact Tania, email and contact details at bottom of the page.

20th August 2012

Roman mosaic found at Toft Green in York. A small section of Roman mosaic has been uncovered during monitoring work on sewer repairs in York. Click here for press article. More news to follow

A new display panel has been erected at the Donkey Fields, Whitby. Located just of Church Street, it is based on information gathered during NAAs excavations in 2010-11. If you are in the town over the summer, pop along and have a look. See link for map

There is still the opportunity to take part in this summer's AASDN excavations at Hornby Castle. Check the link for dates and details

NAA are pleased to welcome Matt Town, who has recently joined us as a Senior Project Officer. Matt, who previously worked for Wardle Armstrong (formerly NPA (, will be supporting our growing fieldwork and survey programme. Nice to have you onboard Matt!

back to top

9th January

Work due to start soon on recording the industrial landscape and building remains at Stonesdale Lead Mine in the Yorkshire Dales. Further updates to follow.

20th December

We would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous 2012.

NAA, together with the Greenhatch Group, are employing some exciting new survey techniques to record a series of Historic Scotland sites. Follow the link for more details.

Members of the Archaeology and Architectural Society of Durham and Northumberland recently enjoyed one of our programmes of outreach workshops. Follow link for more details.

The Castleshaw Roman Forts Conservation Management Plan has now been released. This is the culmination of nearly a year's work and incorporates the ideas and suggestions of local people. Follow the link to download your copy.

New galleries added to the In Focus section, including a look around our offices at Barnard Castle. Take a look,you will be surprised how the mundane can be here

25th November

Where have the cairns gone? Have you spotted something strange going on one the moors near Goathland? Follow the link for further information

We are holding a Community Workshop on drawing archaeological finds for record and publication on Monday the 5th December. Everyone is welcome but numbers are limited, contact us if you would like to book a place.

Recording work continues for Historic Scotland. This week finds our intrepid surveyors up on the banks of Loch Ness recording Urqhart Castle. Web article to follow soon.

back to top

17th November

Thanks to all of those who attended the Castleshaw open evening. There is still time to get your comments on the draft back to Penny at . Consultation now extended till Monday 21st

We are holding a Community Workshop on drawing archaeological finds for record and publication. The first session is booked for 1pm on the 5th December at our offices in Barnard Castle. Everyone is welcome but numbers are limited, please contact if you would like to book a place.

Who's talked about us in November

Saddleworth Online

2nd November 2011

Castleshaw Roman Forts Conservation Management Plan now available for review here

Castleshaw Roman Forts open evening on the 8th November at the Swan Inn, Dobcross. Starts 7.30pm ~ All welcome. To find out more follow this link

Tees Archaeology under threat from budget cuts ~ public consultation period until the 18th November. Show you support and save this important service follow this link

Return of the cold weather signals an increase in fieldwork. Lots of new sites starting in the next few weeks to keep the team busy ~ wrap up warm guys!

back to top

Who's talked about us in October

Saddleworth News
Oldham Evening Chronicle

26th September 2011

Website launch

NAA recently undertook excavations in St John's College gardens on the south bailey, providing a rare opportunity to investigate the heart of Medieval Durham. These excavations are now complete and revealed some interesting new information. Find out more here.

21th September 2011

NAA are working with the Greenhatch group on a series of building surveys for Historic Scotland around the Scottish coast including Urquhart and Knock castles.

Draft Conservation Management Plan for Castleshaw Roman Fort is nearing completion. Copies of the report soon to be posted here for consultation.

NAA are about to start work on a series of scheduled monument conservation projects across the North York Moors National Park

Members of Bedale, Catterick and Northallerton Local History Societies enjoyed a guided tour on Friday of the NAA excavations of the Scorton Cursus.

ISO re-certification
NAA have successfully completed re-certification this month on all three ISO standards for Quality (ISO 9001), Environment (ISO 14001) and Health and Safety (OHSAS 18001).

back to top