Rescued from the sea | Excavations at Low Hauxley | Island of the dead? (video)

Updated 15-Aug with tsunami article

Click to watchAn ongoing rescue project is taking place in Northumberland where coastal erosion has revealed a Bronze Age “cemetery” burial cairn and evidence back to the Mesolithic. There are flints for sure but also antler and hundreds of preserved footprints in the peat beneath the present beach dated to over 7,000 years ago—adults, children and animals.

More media coverage is promised over the coming weeks, but here’s a great 8 minute video hosted by the inimitable Clive Waddington of Archaeological Research Services Ltd. This is a huge community project with more than 150 local volunteers and over 300 school children involved, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Northumberland Wildlife Trust, Newcastle University, UK Coal and The Leader Project. Clive is well-known for the excavations of a Mesolithic house at Howick, Northumberland—one of the earliest Late Mesolithic structures in Britain, occupied from about 7800 cal BC, repaired and rebuilt over many generations. Will they find similar at Low Hauxley?

Recommended Reading

  • Barton, R.N.E. & Roberts, A. 2004. The Mesolithic period in England: current perspectives and new research, in Saville (2004, 339-58).
  • Passmore, D.G. & Waddington, C. 2012. Archaeology and Environment in Northumberland: Till Tweed Studies, vol. 2 of 2. Oxford: Oxbow.
  • Saville, A. (ed.) 2004. Mesolithic Scotland and its Neighbours. Edinburgh: Soc Antiquaries Scotland.
  • Waddington, C. (ed.) 2007. Mesolithic Studies in the North Sea Basin, a Case Study from Howick, North-East England. Oxford: Oxbow.
  • Waddington, C. & Pedersen, K. (eds) 2007. Mesolithic Studies in the North Sea Basin and Beyond. Proceedings of a Conference held at Newcastle in 2003. Oxford: Oxbow.