Newsletter-328-July-1998

 HADAS DIARY 

SATURDAY 25th JULY OUTING: FISHBOURNE & WEALD & DOWNLAND MUSEUM. Tessa Smith & Sheila Woodward BOOKING FORM ENCLOSED. 

SATURDAY 15th AUGUST SHAFTESBURY & FONTMELL MAGNA     with Bill Bass & John Enderby 

SATURDAY 26th SEPT. OUTING KENSAL GREEN CEMETERY - Stewart Wild 

SATURDAY 10th OCT.    MINIMART : our annual fundraiser. 

TUESDAY 13th OCT.    LECTURE : THE WROXETER HINTERLAND SURVEY by Gordon White. 8 p.m. for 8.30 

CONFERENCE in ORKNEY in SEPTEMBER

An impressive CONFERENCE is being organised in ORKNEY from 10th to 14th SEPTEMBER, 1998. One of our Vice-Presidents, DAPHNE LORIMER, has been involved. Entitled "NEOLITHIC ORKNEY - IN ITS EUROPEAN CONTEXT" the conference is sponsored by the Antiquaries of Scotland, Historic Orkney, Orkney Archaeological Trust and many others.

There will be lectures based in Kirkwall and some in Stromness and Westray. A number of field trips will be offered.

Participants will need to find their own accommodation and transport. Tourist Office can help. Of course, Colin Renfrew will be there, giving the inaugural address.

At a cost of £85 for the lectures and separately priced trips, the conference appears to be good value and ex­citing way to catch up with new theories and new discoveries. Speakers will place Neolithic Orkney in a wider European context. CONFERENCE BOOKLET is with Dorothy Newbury. Please contact her if you are interested. 

MEMBERS' NEWS

 It is with great sadness that we report the sudden death of Eileen Pentecost. Eileen and her husband, Cyril, have been on all our weekends away and most of our outings, fully participating in every­thing, in spite of being well into their 80's. Eileen was also a regular helper on the gift stall at our annual Minimart. Cyril has sent a message to the Society via his son, which is quoted as follows: I want to thank the members of HADAS who have worked so hard for the Society. Eileen and I have had so many enjoyable outings and would like to thank the members for their friend­ship over the years. No more Newsletters, please." 

HADAS AT CHURCH FARM         by ANDY SIMPSON

Readers are reminded that until end of September, one of the down­stairs showcases at the Church Farm Museum features a selection of the material recovered during the 1993 and 1996 excavations in the back garden of the Museum.

The display includes all of the Roman roofing and boundary tiles and the Roman pottery found in the Mediaeval ditch fill and in the hill wash further down the site. Also displayed are the remains of the green glazed Mediaeval jug and some impressive pieces of our old friend the Hertfordshire grey ware (circa 1200 A.D.).

More recent times are not forgotten - Victorian and modern bottles, together with a selection of site photographs and drawings, complete the display. 

NEWS FROM THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

Members will know that we welcomed Dr Ann Saunders as our new Pres­ident at the A.G.M. Ann has a background in history and archaeology, and has lectured at University College, London, and at other univer­sities. She is a fellow of the Society of Antiquaries and an author, we look forward to hearing her lecture at our Meeting in January ,1999.

We confirmed the following as Vice Presidents :

Mr John Enderby, Miss D.P.Hill, Mr Brian Jarman, Victor Jones, Mrs Daphne Lorimer, Dr Eric Renn, Mr Andrew Saunders and Mr Ted Sammes.

We also welcomed Denis Ross, who replaces Liz Holliday as Hon. Sec­retary. Liz was thanked for her valuable contribution over many years. Our Hon. Treasurer, Micky O' Flynn, and Chairman, Andrew Sel­kirk, are re-elected. The Committee members are : Bill Bass, Micky Cohen, Dorothy Newbury, Vikki O'Connor, Peter Pickering, Audree Price-Davies, Edward Sammes, Andy Simpson, Arthur Till, Roy Walker, Micky Watkins and Tim Wilkins. (Vikki O'Connor is also Membership Secretary.)

HADAS made a profit to end of March 1948 : Income exceeded expendit­ure by £1,386 - a happy result compared with the previous year when we had a deficit of £290. Stewart Wild has agreed to act as Auditor.

Roy Walker 'filled us in' on the research projects on behalf of Vikki O'Connor. These will be regularly updated in the Newsletter.

Following on the A.G.M. business, Stewart Wild gave us a talk, ill­ustrated with slides, on his recent visit to Estonia. After the main business of the A.G.M. had been finished,Stewart Wild told us about another of his visits to far-off places, this time to Tallinn in Estonia. 

Stewart Wild in Estonia    by June Porges

The Estonians have been ruled in turn by Danes, Swedes, Germans and lately by Russians, from whom they obtained their independ­ence five years ago. In spite of this, they have preserved their own Finno-Ugric language, which has fourteen case endings! They are fiercely proud of their history and heritage. Stewart showed us slides of the capital, Tallinn, which is a fairy­land jumble of cobbled streets with a restored town wall, which runs for two and a half miles and has thirty-five towers. The focal point of the old town (12 to 15% of which was bombed) is the Town Hall Square, built around 1230, and nearby is the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral (built 1900 - 1905) with outer towers and an ornate interior. Along the cobbled streets one constantly comes across houses and yards which are more rural than urban.The old town is mainly traffic-free, and there Stewart photographed a musical procession which lasted two and a half hours. Music, song and dance has helped to preserve the culture and nationality of the country. Most children play one or two instruments and there is much choral singing.Obviously a place to be visited, not on the normal tourist route, though it emerged in the discussion at the end that at least two HADAS members had been there. We do get around 

RE-THINK on HUMAN SETTLEMENT DATING in the SOUTH ATLANTIC

Charcoal fragments from above Port Stanley, Falkland Islands, indicate human habitation long before the French and British settlers arrived in the Falklands during the late 1760's. (Can we expect political capital to be made from this? Ed.) Latest views suggest that New Zealand was first settled around A.D. 1150, much later than the orthodox view, which has placed it between A.D. 750 and 950.The new estimates are based on the widespread 'Tephra' deposits, originally from the volcanic eruptions.

From 'The Times' 25th June,1998. 

FOOTPRINTS in the SANDS of TIME        also from 'The Times 24th June.

The world's oldest known human footprints - in danger from tour­ists and coastal erosion - were airlifted to safety yesterday by South African geologists. A helicopter lifted a specially constructed box which protected the footprints and the soft rock on which they had been made and the fossils are now in a Cape Town museum, safe from the vandals and tourists - and the waves flowing in and out of the Langebaan lagoon,- 60 miles north of Cape Town. Experts believe the three prints were made 117,000 years ago by a woman of about 5 feet 3 inches high, walking in wet sand. This 'genetic Eve' is thought to have lived at the right time and in the right place to fit the 'profile' suggested of our female ancestor ...

 

THE MEDIAEVAL MOAT at the STERNBERG CENTRE, EAST END ROAD, FINCHLEY       by Steven Corren

About 26 people were present in the Drawing Room of the Sternberg Centre on 20th May, 1998, to hear the progress of uncovering the Med­iaeval Moat in the grounds of this old Manor House.

Before we inspected the site, a warm welcome was given by the Rabbi of the Centre, followed by a brief history from English Heritage and a practical talk by the volunteers who actually did all the work. This partnership between the Manor House Trust, English Heritage and the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers, resulted in the completion of the main phase of work to reveal an incredible area of mediaeval moat.

An impenetrable jungle of bracken, vegetation and trees had been covering the site for hundreds of years. Careful clearing ensured that only a minimum of trees were removed to reveal a moat ditch of about 200 metres long and almost 4 metres deep, together with the causeway of the original house. The site had been mentioned in the Doomsday Book and a house recorded here in the 13th Century. The rest of the moat had been back-filled around 1928 or built over in previous years.

Similar moated Manor Houses would have been surrounded by a moat with a large barn and stable block outside the moated area. This would have given some privacy and protection to the Manor House and and the would have been, used for keeping fish, ready water for putting out fires and local sewerage.

Newly laid paths with 'hogging' made made the site more accessible. More information boards are planned are planned, so this would encourage the use of the area for educational research, and it is the hope of the Manor House Trust that the site will be used and enjoyed.

 


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