30 Jan. 2013
Departmental 'leper hospital' excavation to feature in new TV programme
The Archaeology Department's Magdalen Hill Archaeological Research Project, fondly known as the 'leper hospital', will feature in an episode of the new History Channel series Grave Trade, to be broadcast in February.
Find out more about Grave Trade
Find out more about the leper hospital excavation
18 Oct. 2012
Out now: latest issue of Departmental newsletter
Featuring updates on research from Barbados to Belgium and Cornwall to Winchester as well as on staff and student activity and research facilities. Download your copy via the link in the right-hand side column.
10 October 2012
Saudi Arabian PhD student among artists in exhibition about Islam
Saudi Arabian Archaeology PhD student Noha al-Sharif, who is also one of the few well-known female artists in Saudi Arabia, is breaking new ground with her sculptures as part of the exhibition Made in Makkah® in London's Artspace (4 - 27 Oct). Noha's PhD is on the archaeology of Islamic textiles; her research is partly informed by her artistic work.
Find out more about the exhibition Made in Makkah®
Find out more about Noha al-Sharif
5 July 2012
Centre for Applied Archaeology and Heritage Management conference
CAAHM, the Archaeology Department's research centre, hosted its first major event since the successful launch event in June 2011: the day conference '21st-Century Archaeologists: Teaching, Training and Professional Development' on 19 June.
Find out more about the 21st-Century Archaeologists conference
24 May 2012
Local funding for medieval leper hospital research project
Dr Simon Roffey, Senior Lecturer in Medieval Archaeology, has been awarded a research grant of nearly £4000 by the Hampshire Field Club and Archaeological Society for osteoarchaeological examination of human remains from St Mary Magdalen Winchester (the 'leper hospital'). This follows another recent successful funding bid to the British Academy, in which Dr Roffey was awarded £8000 for the same project. He will be working with Osteoarchaeology Researcher Dr Katie Tucker (photo, right, examining human remains in the Archaeology Laboratory with Professor Alice Roberts).
3 May 2012
Leper hospital excavation cover story in latest issue of Current Archaeology
Having already made headlines across the national media, our groundbreaking excavation of a medieval leper hospital on the outskirts of Winchester is now the cover story in the popular magazine Current Archaeology.
Find out more about the leper hospital in Current Archaeology
21 March 2012
The Winchester Pilgrimage
For thousands of years peopled have journeyed to places of worship and sites of religious significance, in the hope that they might find salvation, peace of mind or reward in the afterlife. The University of Winchester, in conjunction with the Leprosy Mission, is proud to present a traditional pilgrimage, in aid of charity, from the centre of the historic city of Winchester to the site of Britain's oldest known hospital.
On the 10th of May (dedicated to St Damien, Patron Saint of lepers and leprosy), pilgrims will journey from the west end of the Cathedral via stopping stations at St John's House, St John's in the Soke, St Giles Hill and Morn Hill, before arriving at the archaeological excavation site of the Hospital of St Mary Magdalen. A series of short talks will be given and a service of commemoration/celebration of the lives of those who lived and died at the site will be held on arrival.
All proceeds from the pilgrimage will go to the UK charity The Leprosy Mission, whose work aims to highlight the plight of sufferers of leprosy or Hansen's Disease, to help ease their suffering with medical treatment and to reduce the stigma attached to this once feared disease.
If you would like to take part in this event, please meet at the west end of the Cathedral at 17.30 on 10 May. Pilgrims will be asked to make a small donation (minimum of £1) to the charity and in return will receive their pilgrim's badge on completion of the walk. Pilgrims may also be sponsored to walk on someone else's behalf, with sponsors receiving their pilgrim's sponsor badge upon completion of the pilgrimage. For more information about this exciting event, please contact Dr Phil Marter.
Photo: the in situ pilgrim's badge found at the 'leper hopital' excavation, evidence of medieval pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostela.
15 March 2012
Archaeology Department to feature in new TV programme
On 14 March, Dr Simon Roffey and PhD candidate Katie Tucker were filmed for a new programme called Grave Trade, to be aired by the History Channel in the autumn; they discussed the leper burials at the Magdalen Hill Archaeological Research Project (MHARP).
Find out more about The Grave Trade
Find out more about MHARP
23 February 2012
Winchester archaeologist joins Time Team
Archaeologist and History PhD student Alex Langlands, of Victorian and Edwardian Farm fame, has joined the team of Time Team presenters; Series 19 of the popular long-running programme is currently being broadcast on Channel 4.
Find out more about the latest Time Team series
Photo: Alex Langlands dressed as an Edwardian farmer (Photo Lion TV)
1 February 2012
Winchester Archaeology students organise museum exhibition
An exciting exhibition by Archaeology undergraduates in collaboration with Hampshire Museums and Galleries Trust was launched on 31st January at Milestones living history museum in Basingstoke. The exhibition, Ancient Wessex, tells the story of Wessex from the Roman to medieval periods, featuring rarely seen artefacts from the University's private collections.
Find out more about the Ancient Wessex exhibition
19 January 2012
Department's high-profile 'leper hospital' excavation featured on BCC's The One Show
For a recent episode of The One Show, Ruth Goodman paid a visit to the Archaeology Department's headline-making 'leper hospital' excavation, to find out about the latest findings of this exciting project. In 2011, the Magdalen Hill Archaeological Research Project found evidence that at this hospital, the earliest in Britain, lepers were treated with care and respect.
Find out more about MHARP
2011 News & Events
7 Dec 2011
Out now: two new Archaeology newsletters
The latest issue of the Archaeology Newsletter is now available for download via the link in the right hand side column. In addition, the first newsletter by the new Archaeology research centre, the Centre for Applied Archaeology and Heritage Management (CAAHM), is also available for download via the CAAHM webpage.
24 November 2011
Long-awaited publication of 'jewel in the crown' of Scottish urban excavations
On 20 October, fascicules 1 and 4 of the Perth High Street excavations were launched at Perth Museum. These excavations, of which Emeritus Professor Tom James was Deputy Director, were the 'jewel in the crown' of Scottish urban excavations, according to Historic Scotland. Prof. James's history of Perth appears in fascicule 1; fascicules 2 and 3 are scheduled for publication later this year and in mid-2012 respectively.
The delay in the publication was due to the size of the arefact assemblage (by the end of the excavation there were 100,000 artefacts) and by the untimely death of Director Nick Bogdan in 2002. Since then, working with Historic Scotland, Prof. James and many others have been working on the vast amount of unpublished material relating to the excavations, focussing most recently on the histories of the burgh and of the tenements, Masonic Hall, chapel, shops and cottages that occupied this vast site.
To order volumes 1 and 4, download the order form here.
Photo: Professor James (centre) on the Perth High Street site being interviewed by Scottish Television (STV). He is flanked on the left by STV News Director Ted Williamson and on the right by Les Wilson, STV news reporter. Prof. James explains: "I'm holding a large-scale map of the site and explaining what we were hoping to find, among other things a Scottish Parliament House. We did unearth the foundations of a house which was almost certainly used for the parliament of 1606."
27 October 2011
Winchester archaeologists part of international team making headlines
October 2011 saw ARCA (the Department's consultancy) undertake its first official project outside the UK, when it was commissioned by the Dutch State Service for Cultural Heritage (Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed - RCE) to carry out a borehole survey as part of its 'Living by the flint mines' (Bewoning bij de vuursteenmijnen) project. The project is examining the extent of Neolithic exploitation of flint seams that outcrop with chalk bedrock around St Geertruid, a village 10km from Maastricht in the southern Dutch province of Limburg. The tunnels dug by Neolithic miners to reach the flint pass through several metres of loess, a windblown sediment that accumulated during the 200 - 13,000 BP interval. Middle Palaeolithic artefacts have been found eroding from this loess on the edges of the Meuse valley.
The fieldwork was in collaboration with Yannick Henk (a freelance archaeologist), Phil Glauberman (University of Connecticut) and Anne van Baelen (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven), who had excavated a ca 4m deep trench. On 16 October, their work led to the spectacular discovery of only the second ever in situ Middle Palaeolithic site in the Netherlands, when a core and several flakes were found in a palaeosol 3.5m below the ground surface. The only other in situ Middle Palaeolithic site in the Netherlands is the famous site of Maastricht-BelvÃ©dÃ¨re.
Photo above: Phil Glauberman holding the Middle Palaeolithic flint core (Photo RCE).
Photo below: ARCA Director Dr Keith Wilkinson, left, and Yannick Henk contemplating the stratigraphy in the trench.
ARCA was commissioned to drill boreholes adjacent to and in the vicinity of the trench to determine which layers were the likely source of the Palaeolithic artefacts, and how and when these layers formed. Between 14 and 17 October, ARCA drilled four boreholes and found that the loess extended down to at least 7m below the ground surface and included at least two palaeosols (buried land surfaces). These latter are the most likely to be the layers from which the Palaeolithic artefacts are eroding. ARCA collected 9m of core during the borehole survey and the next step is to analyse these in the Archaeology Department's soil laboratory to determine what further traces the Neanderthals of Sint Geertruid may have left.
19 Sept. 2011
Milestone international agreement for Archaeology Department
A recently signed 'Memorandum of Understanding for Academic Cooperation' with the Georgian National Museum will allow the Archaeology Department further access to the museum's important collections, and facilitate the exchange of expertise.
Find out more about the agreement with the Georgian National Museum.
1 Sept. 2011
Departmental training excavation annual Open Day
Each year, the Archaeology Department organises an Open Day at its training excavation, to share the latest findings with the general public. This year's Open Day will be on 10th Sept, from 10 am to 3 pm. Minibus shuttles will leave from the University's Medecroft Campus on Sparkford Road every hour on the hour from 10.00. Visitors are urged to make use of the free shuttle bus service as on-site parking and access are restricted.
For more information on the site, visit the project web page.
8 July 2011
British Academy funding for geoarchaeological survey
Dr Keith Wilkinson, Reader in Environmental Archaeology, has been awarded more than £5000 by the British Academy to carry out a borehole survey in the basin of the drained Lake Kopais in Boeotia, central Greece. The survey will focus on the area around the ancient city of Koroneia, one of eight ancient cities bordering the former lake. The aim of the survey is to investigate the interaction between human activity (mainly agriculture) and the local environment from the Bronze Age to the post-Roman period. The survey, which will take place in the spring of 2012, is part of the Ancient Cities in Boeotia Project, under the direction of Professor John Bintliff from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands.
22 June 2011
Department launches research centre
On 16 June, the Archaeology Department launched the Centre for Applied Archaeology and Heritage Management (CAAHM), the public-facing forum for Departmental work. . The event was one of the highlights of the University's Universities Week offering. The keynote address was presented by Professor Dai Morgan Evans, former English Heritage inspector, former General Secretary of the Society of Antiquaries of London and now forging a new career with Channel Four, where he was most recently seen in the critically acclaimed experimental archaeology programme Rome wasn't built in a day. Dai argued forcefully that as long as an item on the discovery of a new dinosaur species can still be announced in the media as 'archaeology', we cannot afford to rest on our laurels, despite the success of programmes such as Time Team. Archaeologists still need to fight to make themselves heard in the political arena too, he added, and be aware of the fact that politicians take notice of the level of popularity of archaeology in the media. At this well-attended event, the Archaeology Department also showcased its ongoing archaeological research and heritage management work worldwide through a series of research posters.
For more information on CAAHM, contact Dr Niall Finneran, the Centre convener.
16 June 2011
Out now: important report on archaeological fieldwork provision and assessment
Earlier this year, Dr Paul Everill ands PhD student Rachell Nicholls carried out a detailed investigation of the provision and assessment of archaeological fieldwork at 44 HE institutions. This is the most complete survey of fieldwork teaching undertaken in the UK to date, and its conclusions have implications for university departments and professional archaeological organisations alike.