It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Don’t worry, you haven’t accidentally picked up the Christmas issue – rather, it’s the height of summer, which means it’s site-visit season. In the last few weeks I have driven through some truly beautiful countryside (and along some seriously dreary stretches of motorway) and, by the time you read this, will have visited projects in Northumberland, the Welsh borderlands, Kent, Berkshire, and Norfolk – and hopefully more that I am yet to pin down (have notebook, will travel!). One of my adventures took me to Hadrian’s Wall, which has been a hotbed of excavation this summer – I visited three digs, two of which form the focus of our first two features. They are a starkly contrasting pair: first we hear the latest news from the extra-mural settlement outside Birdoswald, one of the most intensively investigated forts on the Roman frontier, followed by a new project at Magna, which represents the first modern research excavation of this fort and nearby Milecastle 46.
Remaining in the Roman period, we next explore a new exhibition running in Colchester, which reveals recent findings – and busts some myths – about gladiatorial games in Britain. From there we jump forward in time to learn about two very different medieval sites: a 15th-century farmstead in Jersey, and a ‘lost’ church in Saline, West Fife. Finally, we finish in York, where an award-winning initiative has been using archaeological fieldwork to boost the mental health and wellbeing of local residents.
Before you go, a date for your diaries: next year’s CA Live! will be held on Saturday 24 February 2024, in partnership with the Institute of Archaeology. Save the date!