The Archaeotea Podcasts – Series 1

Welcome to the Archaeotea Podcasts! In this new venture, I’ll be drawing on the more than 30 years of experience I have in archaeology to bring you stories of discovery and exploration from North West England and beyond. My home is Manchester, where I have spent much of my career. I’ve worked for archaeology units,…

The Archaeology of Manchester in 20 Digs – Book No. 48

This year, 2020, marks forty years since the first professional archaeological unit was founded in Manchester. It seemed appropriate, then, to write a book reviewing the emerging understanding of the city’s archaeology and history through some of the most significant excavations undertaken. Fortunately, the wonderful commissioning editors at Amberley Publishing thought it was a good…

Seasonal Archaeology: Castlefield

The Castlefield canal basin on a blisteringly hot and sunny late June day is a sound-scape of noise. There’s the water gushing between the canal gates at the Dukes 92 lock, the rumble of cars across the stone sets (not cobbles, please, these are all squared), and the hubbub of voices, sometimes raised in delight,…

Prehistoric Rock Art in the Manchester Region

Rock art – a term which usually refers to prehistoric human carvings on natural stone – is one of those ancient practices that captures the imagination. In Britain the most common form are swirls, spirals, dots, and circular depressions known as cup marks, and such markings are usually associated with later Neolithic and Early Bronze…

An Archaeology of Cricket

Whilst sport has been played for thousands of years, mass sporting participation is one of the consequences of industrialisation, and like the classic industries of the Industrial revolution it has left a remarkable physical legacy, from football stadia and dog racing tracks to public parks the first of which was published on Manchester ten years…

Dig Greater Manchester Two Years In

Assessing the impact of community archaeology projects is something that archaeologists have been grappling with for years, and a central feature of Dig Greater Manchester which completes its second year next month. The jargon in the profession often focuses around top-down and bottom-up projects (guided and empowered might be friendlier terms), whilst press coverage captures…

Excavating Peterloo

Picture the scene on a summer’s day: tens of thousands of protesters campaigning for the vote; a government fearing revolution; the army brought into to break up a large rally; hundreds of protestors injured and dozens killed. This situation is not Cairo in 2013 but Manchester in 1819. August 16th marked the anniversary of the…