ISSUE No 235:                        October 1990                                     Editor: Micky Cohen


Tuesday, 2nd October First lecture of the Winter Season

"Excavation in West Africa" Origins of West African Bronze Work by Dr Paul Craddock

Paul Craddock, who works at the British Museum, is well known to the Society. He has given us some excellent lectures over the years, taken us on day trips to Rochester, Canterbury and Swanscombe, and provided us with scrumptious teas at his home in Rochester. He conducted us on our tour of the Fakes' exhibition at the B.M. in April this year, and this time he is coming to talk to us about his work in Nigeria last year.

Saturday, 6th October Minimart at St. Mary's Church House, Hendon NW 4 11.30 a.m. to 2.30 p.m.

Help is urgently needed on various stalls. Please ring 203 - 0950 if you can offer your services - if only for the first hour when the rush starts (we hope'.) or for the last hour of cut-price time and clearing up. And ALL members, please come for lunch - Tessa's special! A REMINDER for jam and cake makers - your contributions are particularly welcome, as well as goods for other stalls. Remember - this is our only fund-raising event of the year, and crucial for keeping the Society going. If anyone can display a small advert for the Minimart in their local shop window or their car, please send for one - ring 203 - 0950. The Exhibitions at Church Farmhouse Museum, opposite the Hall will be well worth a visit at the same time (see last months’ notice for the Minimart). 

Thursday, l8th October Historical Association - Illustrated Lecture at 8 p.m. at Westfield College Kidderpore Avenue, NW 3. "Feeding the City - London's Market Gardens, 16th to 18th century." HADAS members welcome. 

Tuesday, 6th November Lecture: "Waters Sweet and Fresh for London" Dr Michael Essex Lopresti

Tuesday, 4th December, Christmas Dinner - more details later. We are having some difficulty with this event at the moment.

Tuesday, 22nd January 2.00pm                          "Behind the Scenes" - Private Tour of the Museum of London's Reserve Collection at Ironmongers' Row.

Numbers are limited, so if you would like to participate in this visit, please send in quickly with a cheque for £1.50 to Dorothy Newbury, 55 Sunningfields Rd., Hendon NW 4. Tel: 203 - 0950.This event is in place of the January lecture, as the first Tuesday falls on New Year's Day. LAMAS members will see  that the HADAS "Behind the Scenes" visit was advertised in the LAMAS September Newsletter for October 9th. This as an error - sorry.

NOTE; LECTURES are held at the Central Library, The Burroughs, Hendon NW 4 8.00 p.m. for 8.30 p.m. NEW MEMBERS, please make yourselves known 

PROGRAMME SECRETARY: Dorothy Newbury (203 - 9050) for information on outings, lectures and walks.


Sick reports first - we are pleased to tell members that - Mary Barnett is out of hospital, home and feeling stronger.

Ann Lawson is also home from hospital and recovering. (Both these members were booked for the Ironbridge weekend and had to cancel.)

Isobel McPherson is home from hospital too, and is pleased to have had letters and cards from members. Last weekend she was able to visit the pipe-line route where it crosses the A 5 at Brockley Hill.

Member Mr X left a message on June Porges' Ansaphone. His name was inadvertently rubbed off. He wanted information regarding the review of the book on Mill Hill. It is as follows - "The Story of Mill Hill" by John W. Collier, published by the Mill Hill Historical Society at £3 + 50 p & p, from Mr Ralph Calder, 2 Feather­stone Road, NW? 2BN.

Brian Wibberley Artistic Director and scene-maker for HADAS "period" banquets, has changed career course. After many years with Johnson Matthey, he has taken redundancy and taken up lecturing at Hatfield Polytechnic. Our best wishes to him.

Alec Jeakins We are delighted to report the birth of a second son to Alec and Ursula in August.

Nigel and Ann McTeer,  Nigel was our coach driver for the Ironbridge weekend and writes: Please thank the members of HADAS for their welcoming into their midst of Anne and myself. The trip was excellent, marred slightly by my coach. Please give in your next Newsletter my thanks to all who contributed to my gift; it was not really necessary as I enjoyed the whole trip (Bridges as Well). But most of all, thank you for the grand way you accepted us "new boys" into HADAS. I look forward to driving you again and joining in your trips.

Mrs McNicol a member who moved to the Isle of Man in 1989 writes:" the Isle of Man is archaeology rich, to put it mildly. So very glad HADAS gave me such a "taste" for it, and taught me how much I had to learn. What a feast it was to an Australian with only 200 years of European buildings, etc.

The Newsletter is a delight - brings such happy memories, such tempting trips, more gaps filled into my slim knowledge. When I have the operations on my feet I can put my feet up and properly study this year's file of Newsletters...." She sends her best wishes and thanks to all.

George Inghram wishes to convey to everybody, his very grateful thanks and appreciation for the many cards, gifts and good wishes received on the occasion of his 90th birthday. Also to thank the Newsletter (September) for the so aptly-written report of the party, which, indeed, was a great surprise and gave him much happiness - it was nice to meet so many friends and the time went all too quickly.

Malcolm Jack Goldenfeld Congratulations to Malcolm, HADAS member from Chorley-wood, who has just finished a long trek. In 1980 he started studying for the extra-mural Certificate in Field Archaeology - and got it. Then he decided to cap the Certificate with the Diploma in Archaeology. This summer, after ten years hard labour in all, he has passed that, too, with flying colours.

"Someone suggested evening classes once, when I was helping at the Museum of London," he told me. "Then, getting the Diploma seemed like the heady heights of Olympus."   However, that's not the sum of Mr Goldenfeld's ambitions. Now he has his eye on a post-Diploma course in the subject he knows best and enjoys most: Archaeological draughtsmanship.

Are there any other HADAS success stories among the summer examination results ?

If so, the Newsletter would love to hear of them. 


We have had a lively correspondence (more than 30 letters) on changing the name of HADAS. Three more letters are published in this issue. So far more than 80% of opinions expressed are not in favour of any change. Those, who do favour change have made many different suggestions; no consensus has emerged.

The Committee of HADAS has had an opportunity of considering all the letters received to date. They have decided to wait until all those who wish to express a view have had the chance to do so. On present form, the Committee are inclined against a formal change to our name, but in favour of adding "Based on the Borough of Barnet" beneath the heading "Hendon and District Archaeological Society" on  our letter paper and elsewhere.

This form of words shows that our interest covers the whole of Barnet, but does not confine our activities within the Borough.

Members views are represented by:

Mr Stewart Wild, 33 Cyprus Road, Finchley, London N3 3SD (28th August, 1990)

I have been following the correspondence regarding a possible change to the Society's name with great interest.

I am surprised that some folk should feel that a new name might be desirable, and support wholeheartedly the views so eloquently expressed by Daphne Lorimer, writing from Orkney in the last Newsletter. Perhaps distance lends perspective.

If the HADAS name were lost, no matter what name might replace it, I can just imagine that in years to come, there could easily be a public misconception that the Society had expired along with its name. Any marketing man will tell you that you don't change a brand name without spending a fortune on an advert­ising campaign to re-enforce the message.

Since we don't have thousands of pounds to spend on advertising, common sense suggests that we leave well alone."


Mr John Whitehorn, 16 Falkland Road, Barnet.                         (30th August, 1990)

I suggest that the Society's name be changed to "Hendon and Barnet Archaeological Society".

It would be easy for insiders or outsiders to get used to the very slight change in the acronym: HABAS for HADAS; and only a very small change to the logo " 

Mrs Olive Banham, a Founder Member, 72 Bertram Road, Hendon NW 4 (5th Sept. 1990)  " Please don't change the name of HADAS It is known world-wide. We want to be different. I'm sure Mr Constantinides would agree. "

MORE ABOUT AMPHORAE                                                                                                                                                                                                                   from Mrs Nell Penny

 Is there space for me to challenge Brigid Grafton Green's scholarly article about the universally useful amphora in the September Newsletter ? Where there is no documentary corroboration, archaeological arguments are informed guesswork, possibly to be modified or contradicted by the next "dig". Is there any eulogy of the humble amphora in those Greek and Roman manuscripts which survive ? I'm sure I could find a nineteenth century ode to the domestic teapot and a twentieth century paean about the plastic jerrican and bucket. Both of these have flat bottoms. And if the amphora was so easy to handle, why did it not survive the Western Roman Empire ? Were the Celtic and Teutonic tribesmen mindlessly destructive of anything so useful, or were they truly innovative when they "threw" pots which could stand on their own feet or bottoms ?


Brian Wrigley reports that Richmond Archaeological Society have arranged a PANEL DISCUSSION on ENGLISH HERITAGE'S PLANS FOR LONDON ARCHAEOLOGY, to be held on FRIDAY, 12th OCTOBER,1990, commencing at 8 p.m. in THE VESTRY HALL, RED LION ST., RICHMOND. Admission; £1.00 


HADAS members will know that Christ's College is due to move from its present site to new premises at the end of this year. A Trust has been formed to secure the site for a much needed arts and leisure centre for Barnet residents. Our own June Porges is on the board of the Trust though not as a HADAS representative. The Trust has found that the new "Unitary Development Plan" for Barnet, which goes to Public Enquiry this month, has defined specific sites for particular leisure developments and in the case of Christ's College proposes the use of the site for an hotel development.

Barnet is lacking in facilities for cultural activities and performing arts. The opportunity to use a site that is central, well served by public transport and of reasonable size for arts and leisure purposes may not arise again for many years. The Trust objects to the possible use of the site as a "Civic Centre" being excluded from the Plan, and has put in a formal objection. HADAS is equally concerned that the possibility of the site being used for arts and leisure purposes should be safeguarded and has also submitted an objection to the Plan, seeking the inclusion of this alternative use in the proposals.


We left for the last day's outing of the season in wonderful weather and a surprising lack of traffic. Our coffee stop at Newport Pagnell was the "Swan Revived" Hotel. Partly, Tudor, one of the bars was unusually decorated with shelves of baked clay painted models of local shops and homes of note, complete with timbered façades, window boxes, awnings and shop signs. A local artist takes commissions. We had time for a short visit to the town and the much restored church of St. Peter and Paul. This has a fine ceiling and set of bells which were being rung into position for an afternoon wedding.

The next stop was our main objective: the Romano-British villa at Piddington. Roy Friendship Taylor lectured HADAS on this site last October. The Nene Arch­aeological Society have dug here at weekends for ten years. Some of the excavation area has been covered over after recording what remains presents a striking example of a rich villa - the furnace, bath house and pillared wing of rooms, cellar and courtyard clearly visible. The walls remain to a good height. Vents, pillar bases, hypocaust system, tiles, window and door openings can be distinguished and are visually graphic. Fragments of painted plaster tiles and mosaic indicate that the villa was decorated and painted inside and out and must have had an almost garish appearance. There is no doubt that the villa was the centre of a thriving settlement and rich area. It is and active dig - about eleven years of work remain to be done.

After our packed lunch (tea from a refreshment stand the Nene Society provide on open day) we went on to Towcester, the site of Roman Lactodorum; a staging post with Watling Street running straight through it. The area is the site of Saxon and Danish clashes and later Roundheads and Cavaliers. A member of the local Historical Society took us round buildings of note - a Chantry School, and old windmill and a now reduced Roman mound among the sights.

We finished with tea provided by the Women's Institute in the modern Riverside Leisure Centre, a most welcome stop after a long, hot, but most interesting day.


THE THREE RIVERS PIPELINE PROJECT               by Victor Jones (crossing Roman Watling Street)

Work on this project in our Borough is now nearly finished. It has involved in effect the digging of a huge ditch, as wide as a large road and about a foot deep.

It has a central deeper section, wide enough to take the huge water supply pipe, one metre in diameter. In places, the ditch is as deep as the height of a small house.

The work is now almost complete; the pipe is laid and covered for most of its route across the North West section of the Borough. There is now only one gap left and since my last report, the section from the Arkley side of the A1000 is to be tunnelled under the road. The route has been cut through the Scratch-wood Open Space (a little-known but large Bird sanctuary with wooded walks and picnic area) to the edge of the Edgware Golf Course. I have seen it suggested that the woods might be a remnant of the ancient Middlesex Forest and would welcome any suggestions on how this could be traced.

The crossing of the Golf Course will take place soon and then a tunnel will be laid under the M1 to join the Edgwarebury Farm section, which is complete, and continues to join a nearly complete Brockley section. This brings me to the main news. Watling Street was crossed last week and, as most members will know, it was hoped would perhaps reveal something of the orig­inal Roman road. Both we and the Museum of London were only alerted a day or so before the event.

Arrangements for watching were hurriedly made, and both Museum and HADAS were present during the whole weekend. Isobel McPherson, who many members will know is unwell, managed a visit with June Porges' help. Tessa Smith and I were there, and representatives of the Museum, particularly John Mills who spent so much time and effort on a possibly early road construction.

Reporting all this will take some time; I hope it will be possible in the next Newsletter, but it is quite a long story.

WEEKEND IN SHROPSHIRE                                                                         by Stewart Wild

Our members know a good thing when they see one. Discovering that the 1890's pharmacy and chemist's shop at Blists Hill stocked hair restorer, they asked for two gallons of it. The friendly staff, in true Victorian style and garb, enjoyed the joke. Alas, they said, we only have eight-ounce bottles, priced at three farthings

Forty-one of us were spending a thoroughly enjoyable weekend in Shropshire, a pleasant, largely rural county where the sleepy upper Severn valley belies the fact that 250 years ago it was, to coin a phrase, the cradle of the Industrial Revolution. With Roman remains, some excellent museums, a restored Georgian mansion, a ruined abbey, a stately home, a church made of recycled building materials, and industrial archaeology all around, the latest HADAS outing had something for everyone.

We left Finchley early on Friday morning, 31st August, with the added pleasure of discovering that our coach driver, Nigel McTeer, was also a HADAS member, and that our guide for the weekend would be Fred Bishop, secretary of the London branch of the Friends of Ironbridge Gorge Museum.

Our first stop was at Wall Roman Site (Letocetum) near Lichfield, the remains of a Roman fort and staging post on Watling Street, where we visited the tiny museum and enjoyed a short talk by the curator before attacking our picnic lunches. Excavations here at the end of the last century revealed the remains of a large bath house and a furnace room; the rest of the sprawling site, dating from about 70 A.D. remains buried under the houses, gardens and fields of the present-day hamlet of Wall, now mercifully by-passed by the heavy traffic on the A5.

On to Coalport for a short tour of the kilnsand workshops of the former china works which, under the control of the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust, opened to the public in 1976 after half a century of disuse. There's a dazzling display of porcelain ware on show, a fascinating museum which explains the manufact­uring process (do you know what a saggar is ?) and an adjacent shop. The Trust has ambitious plans for further renovation on the site, including digging out a blocked canal.

A short walk brought us to the Tar Tunnel, at extraordinary relic dating from 1786, and the only place in the Gorge where one can venture any distance underground. The tunnel was dug horizontally from a riverside meadow into the hillside, to connect with the shafts of the Blists Hill coal mine about 1,000 yards away. The intention was to build an underground canal which would facilitate the removal of the coal by barge instead of hauling it up the shaft and then carting it back downhill to the river. Such an ambitious scheme had an unusual outcome when the miners struck a spring of natural bitumen about 300 yards from the entrance. To start with, the tar flowed at a rate of some 600 gallons a day, but by 1820 the flow was reported to be only one barrel per month. The discovery brought wealth to the area as the bitumen was used in a great variety of products from skin ointment to varnish and pitch for the preservation of wood.Although the canal was never built, the tunnel was used for extracting coal until 1930. It fell into disuse and was forgotten about until 1965. Since 1973, visit­ors have been allowed to venture a short distance - tar still comes through the brickwork, and it's heads down all the way.We stayed two nights at Harper Adams Agricultural College, near Newport, where the single-room accommodation in sixties-style-blocks was surprisingly comfortable. There were no complaints about the catering either, particularly as )orothy paid for the wine ! After dinner on Friday we were treated to a most interesting talk and slide show by Ken Jones, secretary of the F.I.G.M., who proved to have an encyclopaedic knowledge of the Ironbridge area and its history. We were thus well prepared for the day ahead.

We would all have liked to have stayed longer at the Museum of Iron in Coalbrook-dale. On three floors of an historic building, it features all you could ever want to know about iron and the part it played in our industrial history. The fame of the Ironbridge Gorge in the late 18th century, its thriving ironworks, collieries and lime works, its steam engines, its innovations in the use of iron and in the ceramic and chemical industries, all depended ultimately on mineral wealth, on the extraction of coal, iron ore, clay and limestone from the earth. Here in the Gorge they had all this, plus the use of the River Severn to transport the finished goods.

The museum also dealt with social history: the Bristol Quaker families Darby and Goldney, who provided the necessary private funding; William Reynolds, scientist, engineer and founder of Coalport; and Thomas Telford, born in Scotland in 1757, who achieved fame by building roads and iron bridges, and after whom the thriving new town of Telford is named. We learnt too of the original John Bull, and iron­worker named William Ball (1795 -1852) whose massive strength and size (80" round the waist) made him a local legend. In 1850 he was exhibited in London and else­where as "John Bull the greatest man in the world".--Weighing 36 stones, he must have been an awesome sight - it took 20 men to carry his coffin at his funeral.

A short walk took us to Rosehill House, built in the 1730's and home to several generations of the Darby family. It has been beautifully restored by the Trust, and provides an insight into the daily life of a wealthy family in the 19th cent­ury. Nearby, a row of cottages is being restored to illustrate the living conditions of the working classes.

At last to the Iron Bridge itself, the world's first, dating front 1789, when it was constructed as a demonstration of the ironmasters' skills. we admired the Tollhouse, walked over and under the bridge, took photographs galore, and some of our party were fortunate to meet a riverside resident who still builds coracles in the traditional way. Then we passed the ruined Bedlam furnace on our way to the Jackfield Tile Museum, a remarkable collection of ceramics adjacent to derelict workshops which will one day also be restored. Quality bricks-and tiles were essential to the ironmaking process.

The rest of the afternoon was spent at Blists Hill Open Air Museum, a wonderful collection of buildings, some on their original sites. The complex re-creates a typical Shropshire industrial community of the 1890's, complete with shops, bank, pub, printer, candlemaker, cobbler, locksmith and so on. The site includes a canal, the original pithead of a working coal mine, a mission church, the remains of blast furnaces, and a rebuilt wrought iron foundry. Houses include a doctor's surgery, a tollhouse and a squatter's cottage. Local residents and shopkeepers (Friends of the Museum in Victorian costume) complete the illusion wonderfully, and once again Ken Jones was a wonderful guide, setting the scene with an astonishing amount of knowledge as we walked around.

That evening our guide to Wroxeter Roman City joined us for dinner. A former HADAS member, Dr Roger White is a young and enthusiastic archaeologist with a great knowledge of Wroxeter gained by working there over several seasons. His erudite talk and slide show was the perfect introduction to this important site.

Sunday morning found us on the way to Wroxeter, with a stop first at Buildwas Abbey. These ruins of .a Cistercian monastery and abbey are remarkably well preserved, and the guardian proved an excellent guide for our visit.

Wroxeter (Viroconium Cornoviorum) was the fourth largest city in Roman Britain, covering an area of 180 acres (the size of Pompeii). Begun in A.D. 60, it served as a garrison fort for the troops massing for the assault on Wales (the Severn nearby was fordable at this point). The remains of the forum and extensive bath houses have been excavated; quite a lot is known about public buildings, but very little about private dwellings. The site contains Britain's largest piece of standing Roman wall, a section about 18 feet high that is affectionately known as "The Old Work". Yet again we had an excellent guide - Roger seemed to know everything. A small museum on the site has some of the more interesting finds.

It was a short walk to St. Andrew's Church nearby, now redundant but still cared for Michael Watson, the county archaeologist, did a fine job showing us round and pointing out some of the unusual features, including a font made from the upturned base of a Roman column.

It was a pity time was so short, but we had to be on time for our lunch at Attingham Park, a magnificent mansion built for Lord Berwick in 1785, and now in the care of the National Trust. We had time to look over the house and stroll in the grounds. It was a nostalgic visit for five of our party who had stayed there on the occasion of the first HADAS weekend in 1974.

Roger White then accompanied us to Shrewsbury where we enjoyed a walking tour of the streets and back alleys of the medieval town, finishing with an orgy of calories as we tucked into tea and scones at the 17th century Lion Hotel.

We returned to London via the A5, the journey taking rather longer than planned on account of heavy traffic in places. But nobody seemed to mind - we had had a splendid weekend with fine weather throughout, and once again Dorothy's org­anisation had been faultless. Thanks go to her and our guides Fred, Ken and Roger, and driver Nigel, for all their hard work.

Where to next year?


With the onset of cooler weather, work at this site continues apace; the developer, Bishops, have again kindly made available a "JCB" and driver. The opportunity was taken to back-fill three "worked out" trenches and to open up three new ones.

The smallest of these three new trenches, in the far north-west corner of the site, close to the street frontage, exposed, below the concrete shop floor, a small pit, cutting the natural clay. This was excavated and proved to be of medieval date, containing grey ware and animal bone. A long narrow East-West trench, further back, has exposed more of the medieval cobbled surface, also with associated "grey wares". The new trench at the rear of the site, linking two earlier trenches, has proved to be perhaps the most productive yet: the first feature noted is a short length of wall foundation, constructed of flint rubble and red tile. John Mills of the Museum of London tells us that he has seen sim­ilar examples, serving as dwarf walls for timber buildings, in the Uxbridge area dated to 1400-1700. A structural feature at last! This wall is butted on one side by a large pit: this was found to contain a superb pottery assemblage of c. 1700 A.D., including tinglaze, stonewares, slipwares, and mottled wares. Many of the sherds should be reconstructible into identifiable vessels.

The "portakabins" on site will shortly be moved, making more space available for excavation. However, we can do little without rather more bodies on site.

Come and help us make the most of this sizeable slice of medieval High Barnet

Details, as always, from Brian (tel: 081-959-5982; Arthur (tel: 081-368-6288) or your ever-pushy scribe, Andy (tel: 081-205-6456). WE NEED YOU!!

OTTOMAN JOURNEY                                                                             by Rosalie Ivens

In June, I flew to Istanbul, then took a coach across the Anatolian plateau to Ankara, thence to Cappodocia. This area has the most amazing rock formations, for example the "Tuff" which was formed by volcanic ash millions of years ago, and sheltered by hard rock boulders above from wind and rain, which ate away the rest. Thus gradually appeared tall columns capped with rocks to look like fossilized mushrooms, called "fairy chimneys" by our guide. In the valley of Gorene, strange cone-shaped sandstone rocks had been hollowed out by Christians of 1,400 years ago, hiding from persecuting Arabs. Until quite recently people lived in an ancient monastery and a convent, built in the rock, with chapel walls painted with frescos, carved altars, and refectories with long tables and benches carved along the walls.

At the ancient ruins of Hieropolis, we swam in the Sacred Pool in hot thermal spring water, surrounded by roses, hibiscus, oleanders, cedar and cypress trees ­and under the water, fluted columns and Corinthian capitals from the Roman portico nearby. Outside the city is the necropolis - some 1,230 tombs unearthed in recent excavations.

On to Ephesus, one of the best preserved Greco-Roman cities in the world, and the site of the temple of Artemis, once one of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world. Now it is rather a mournful site, just a single reconstructed column standing beside the excavation pit with foundations stones and architectural members. The rest of Ephesus is most impressive: colonnaded streets and avenues, the great theatre seating 25,000, the Market Place, the Library of Celsus, and the large pub-ic bath house of the Scholastics, in front of which stands the Temple of Hadrian, with its reconstructed porch sheltering the. bust of Tyche, protectoress of the city. For light relief (?) our party was photographed sitting in the ancient public latrines! We also visited the 6th century Basilica of St. John (which marks the spot where the apostle spent his last years and died) and the Virgin Mary's House, discovered 100 years ago through the visions of a German woman. It is now a place of pilgrimage, venerated by Moslems as well as Christians.

A few nights' rest at a small seaside village Altinoluk, and then a trip to ancient Pergamum, where Asclepion, dedicated to Asclepius the god of healing, was a highly reputed medical centre. It provided hot baths, massage, spring water for drinking, primitive psychiatry and interpretation of dreams. We saw the ruins of the library (Antony stole the books and gave them to Cleopatra) the very steep theatre, and the site of Zeus' altar, removed by the Germans in the Second World War and now to be seen in East Berlin.

At last came Troy, where nine different cities have been built over the centuries. Now there are signs to tell you.which layer you are looking at L Then the ruins of Assos, whose massive walls still remain on the western side,with an arduous climb above for a rewarding panoramic view over the Aegean, and the ruins of a temple to Athena. Finally, we returned to Istanbul via Bursa - Ottoman capital of the 14th century, now famous for two great mosques and a beautiful Green Tomb – a pleasant city. Many more sites to visit in Turkey - I hope to go back !