National Eisteddfod-Day 3

Day 3, and the atmosphere at the Eisteddfod starts to pick up.  A busy day on Heritage row, with the number of people stopping by for a chat and to browse our display panels steadily growing. Visits by our past and then present Chairman all add to the mix (congratulations to Frank Olding on the launch of his new book of poetry and Ray, I’ll see you on Thursday).  

 Our stand today included a living history display by a medieval armorer and the production of chainmail went down a storm, and of cause all in Welsh.  In the afternoon there was a well attended talk at the Amgueddfa Cymru stand on the redevelopment project at St Fagans, this proved to be an excellent opportunity to hob-nob with the great and the good in Welsh heritage and to raise the profile of the Trust…also there was free coffee and cakes!

 Ken’s now legendary archaeological walk (which takes place at 4pm everyday) unfortunately had to proceed without a representative from GGAT, luckily Mark Lodwick from the National Museum was on hand to discuss all things Bronze Age.


National Eisteddfod-Day 1

The first Saturday of the National Eisteddfod is always a quiet one, and today was no exception. This year all the main heritage bodies can be found next to each other in the same row.  This works really well, as hopefully we can all work together to promote not only each others work, but more importantly Welsh heritage.  GGAT (under the banner of the four Welsh Archaeological Trusts) is sandwiched between the Peoples Collection and the National Museum, having Ken Brassil next door is great , his enthusiasm and passion for archaeology is unbounded and contagious!
I arrived at the Maes this morning in glorious sunshine, this however did not last and the rain soon made its presence known, which was good as it tested how waterproof our section of the tent was.
View of the rain from GGAT's stand at the National eisteddfod
The afternoon saw a constant stream of visitors to our stand, the Trusts new Airfield display panels and 2012 Discovery & Learning booklet went down a storm, and lots of interesting discussions about the archaeology of the area took place. Tomorrow day 2.

Damp but not disheartened!

A laptop with the Archwilio website was free for people to use and view the archaeology of their area

Our ‘Archaeology for All’ event at Swansea Museum suffered, as other events did, from the wet summer weather. Though those brave enough to venture out in Saturdays soggy conditions were treated to a cornucopia of historical and archaeological activities and stalls.

The museums teaching room was a wash (excuse the pun) with historical societies and interest groups informing the public about local history with their usual breadth of knowledge and gusto.  While outside various groups of medieval re-enactors showed the public how we lived during past  times.

Highlights of the day included the woad face painting, which went down a storm, but how long the paint remained on your face after stepping

outside of the tent and into the waiting deluge was up for discussion!  The Roman cookery demonstration, by our own Dr Edith Evans (Happy Birthday Edith), is always a  crowd puller.  However, Edith was finding it difficult to keep the home fires burning as a small pool of water gradually built up within the hearth and threatened to drown the proceedings.

All in all a good day was had despite the weather and a big congratulations goes out to our Community Archaeology Training Placement Sam Pamment who did such a great job organising the event.

GGAT's Heritage and Outreach Manager demonstrating Roman cookery

A GGAT archaeologist using traditional techniques to build a willow fishtrap

Gelligaer Rock Art Project blog now online

Following the exciting discovery last summer on Gelligaer Common of a piece of prehistoric art – a cup-marked stone, the Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust and Groundwork Caerphilly decided that it would be a good idea if we looked to see if there are any more.
Archaeologists from the Trust along with help from local residents will carry out a survey on the Common, with the specific aim of looking for cup-marked stones.  GGAT are also trying to find out more about a cup-marked stone, called the Marrying Stone, found in 1935 in Bargoed.
Visit the blog at gelligaerrockart.blogspot.co.uk to find out all about this exciting project and the discoveries it makes.
Maen Cattwg cupmarked stone, Gelligaer Common. South Wales

Community Archaeology Training Placements

Do you want to develop your career in archaeology?
Are you interested in working directly with a wide range of communities?

The Council for British Archaeology (CBA) is offering 10 twelve month paid bursary places with different host organisations across the UK, aimed at training individuals who already have a good working knowledge of archaeological theory and practice in the skills needed to run and support effective community archaeology projects.

The bursaries are funded through the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Skills for the Future programme, with support from English Heritage, Cadw and Historic Scotland.

Placements will start in April 2012 and successful candidates will receive a salaried bursary of approx £16,450 (see individual job descriptions for further details).

There are five Welsh host organisations and locations:

For complete details of these posts please visit www.britarch.ac.uk/community/bursaries/2012, or visit the host organisation websites.

Application closing date: Friday 20th January


Mae Cyngor Archaeoleg Prydain (CBA) yn hysbysebu deg bwrsari hyfforddi am 12 mis mewn archaeoleg gymunedol, gyda chymorth y Loteri Genedlaethol drwy Gronfa Dreftadaeth y Loteri, a thrwy gymorth ychwanegol yng Nghymru gan Cadw ac Ymddiriedolaethau Archaeolegol Cymru.

Mae pump sefydliad a lleoliad yn cynnig lle yng Nghymru:

  • Cadw (Caerdydd)
  • Ymddiriedolaeth Archaeolegol Dyfed (Llandeilo)
  • Ymddiriedolaeth Archaeolegol Morgannwg-Gwent (Abertawe)
  • Ymddiriedolaeth Archaeolegol Gwynedd (Bangor)
  • Comisiwn Brenhinol Henebion Cymru (Aberystwyth)

Bwrsari: Gweler disgrifiadau’r swyddi unigol

I gael manylion llawn y swyddi hyn, ewch i http://www.britarch.ac.uk/community/bursaries/2012, neu edrychwch ar wefannau’r sefydliadau sy’n cynnig y lleoedd.

Y dyddiad cau i wneud cais: dydd Gwener 20 Ionawr

Dyddiadau’r cyfweliadau: Gweler y pecynnau ymgeisio unigol.

Council for British Archaeology logo Heritage Lottery Fund logoCadw logo

Forgotten Landscapes

During the afternoon of Saturday 10th September I will be giving a short talk on the Historic Landscape of Blaenavon at the Learning Landscape Open Day at the World Heritage Centre in Blaenavon. I will be (trying) explaining the Welsh methodology for characterising the  historic landscape, giving a rapid tour through the 21 historic character areas that make up the historic  landscape of Blaenavon and describing how the methodology of the Assessment of the Significance of the Impact of Development on Historic Landscapes (ASIDHOL) can be used to show what is an appropriate development in a Registered Historic Landscape.

LEARNING LANDSCAPES OPEN DAY – New courses available in the World Heritage Site

FLP LogoEver wanted to learn more about the history, archaeology or wildlife of the Blaenavon area then this is your chance!

Come along to Blaenavon World Heritage Centre on Saturday 10th September to find out more about the brand new courses on offer in the World Heritage Site.

Tutors will be available from 1pm to 5pm to discuss the exciting new learning opportunities available. There will also be a series of guided walks, talks and workshops throughout the afternoon.

This open day marks the launch of the new courses, which will start later this month. The courses have been developed by the Centre for Community and Lifelong Learning at University of Wales Newport and the Glamorgan-Gwent Archaeological Trust.

The courses form part of the Forgotten Landscapes Project and are possible thanks to the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund. Forgotten Landscapes Education Officer, Ceri Cadwallader said ‘Blaenavon Industrial Landscape has been recognised for its outstanding universal value through designation as a World Heritage Site. We are delighted to be able to offer these courses, and hope they will allow more people to see just how rich this landscape is, both in history and wildlife.’

All Open Day activities free with no booking necessary. For more information please go to www.visitblaenavon.co.uk or contact University of Wales Newport on 01633 432432 or uicenquiries@newport.ac.uk

Blaenavon workers housing with the ironworks in the backgroundHill's Pit stone-built engine house chimney with the remains of the workers enclosures in the foreground


Changing Landscape

The story of the landscape and wildlife of the World Heritage Site, from degradation to conservation. Discover how the relationship between man and the environment has changed with time and find out how this landscape is being managed today. Course starts Tuesday 27th Sept 7–9 pm

People’s History

Are you interested in the people’s history of Blaenavon? Do you want to know how to make sense of the ‘stuff’ that has been left behind? Join this hands-on course and learn how to investigate local history through the objects that were once used in the everyday life of past residents.  Course starts Wednesday 28th Sept 7–9 pm.

Exploring your Heritage – A Community Archaeological Toolkit

This course is set out to encourage and promote the appreciation of the rich and diverse heritage of Blaenavon World Heritage Landscape and to provide a toolkit of skills so that members can take ownership of their local heritage and historic environment and have a hand in maintaining historic sites for present and future generations.  Learn how to investigate the archaeology of sites, create new historical records, look after and take responsibility for your local heritage, present your findings to your community.  Course Starts Thursday 29th Sept 7 – 9pm.

GGAT help to promote events for ‘Open Church Day 2011’

Open Church Day this year is Saturday 17th September, and you can find details of participating churches in the downloadable leaflets on our website. However, please look carefully at details of opening times for each church, as some churches have found it more convenient to open on a different day of the month. The leaflets include those churches that advertised their participation by the end of August, but you may find some late entries at the Churches Tourism Network Wales website and the Civic Trust for Wales site.

St Andrew's, PenriceThe interior of St Illtyd's, Ilston.

St Andrew's, Penrice St David's, Llanddewi

Day of Archaeology

Day of Archaeology logoHave you ever wondered what archaeologists really get up to?  Well, now’s your chance to find out! 

The Day of Archaeology 2011 aims to give the public a window into the daily lives of archaeologists.  The event will chronicle what archaeologist do on one single day, July 29th 2011.

So, if you’ve ever wondered what happens here at GGAT or in archaeology in general, visit the DoA website tomorrow, 29th July,  to find out what archaeology is really all about.

Visit the Day of Archaeology website here

Neath Abbey Medieval Day


If your out and about in the Neath today why not visit us at Neath Abbey. GGAT are attending the Cadw event in the Abbey grounds. We’ve got our children’s excavation, try your hand at wattle ‘n’ daubing or search the Trust’s records using Archwilo. There’s guided walks, talks and medieval reinactors galore!! Also, the crepes are fantastic!