Countdown to city’s Roman dig

Time Team's Raksha Dave
Time Team's Raksha Dave

The group set to carry out the first archaelogical dig in Lancaster for over 40 years say their experience comes from watching Time Team on TV.

Lancaster and District Heritage Group will be leading the dig in Quay Meadow, between Lancaster Castle and Quay Meadow, for six days starting next Thursday, September 17.

A geophysical survey of the area last year revealed the possibility of a Roman port and 4th century Roman hill fort on the site.

Time Team archaeologist Raksha Dave, along with at least three other experienced archaeologists, will be guiding progress on the site.

Children from four or five of the district’s schools will also be visiting the site over the six days.

David Ingham, from Lancaster and District Heritage Group, said 24 members attended a meeting to begin their initial training two weeks ago, and most said their only experience came from watching Time Team.

Andrew Brown, the group’s secretary said: “The group is now primed and ready and there is an almost palpable excitement and sense of anticipation about what is going to happen over these coming six days. We know that for the first couple of days much of the time is going to be spent learning how to do things the right way which doesnt necessarily mean the quickest way. It is vital that everything we do during this dig is done correctly, it gives us as a group credibility and it also means that anything we find won’t be destroyed or ruined through ignorance of good practice. We hope that as many of Lancaster’s residents as possibly can take the chance to come down and see what is going on and see how local residents such as themeselves are tring to make a difference.”

The group said one of its future projects will be to investigate the old isolation hospital on the site occupied by Keyline in New Quay Road and is appealing for more information.