newsletter-412-july-2005

Newsletter

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HADAS DIARY

Wednesday 27 July to Sunday 31 July 2005, visit to Northumberland. Now full, contact Jackie Brookes to see if there is a last minute cancellation.

Saturday-Sunday 6-7 August 2005, Excavation at Church Farmhouse Museum. See page 7.

Saturday 13 August, outing to Swanscombe & Faversham, with Tessa Smith and Sheila Woodward. Application form enclosed.

Saturday 10 September, outing with June Porges and Stewart Wild, to include Copped Hall, Essex, where there is an excavation. Details later.

Our lecture Season recommences in October.

11 October, Jill Cook (British Museum) Palaeolithic Art: soft curves and full figures - images of women in the art of the Old Stone Age.

8 November, tba.

Lectures start at 8.00 pm in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, East End Rd, Finchley, N3. Buses 82, 143, 260 & 326 pass close by. and it is a five to ten minute walk from Finchley Central Station (Northern Line).

In Last Month's Newsletter.

Production difficulties caused by the illness of last month's editor, just as she was preparing the Newsletter, resulted in our repeating the HADAS Diary for June 2004. In addition, we re-ran details of a lecture by Malcolm Stokes last June. We apologise to Malcolm, and to all members who may have been inconvenienced. A further apology is due. The report on the Sutton Hoo lecture by Angela Evans was by new member Val Johnston, and not as stated, Ron Johnston.

An SOS from Dorothy.

The Society is desperately in need of a Reserve Editor for the Newsletter. We have lost four editors in the last two years and now have no reserve. Any of our present editors will be happy to advise on what is involved. No editorial experience is needed, just a computer or typewriter. Is there a new or old member out there willing to help? Please ring Dorothy, M 020 8203 0950.


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Pinner Hill Golf Club Excavation by Bill Bass

Pinner Hill Golf Club, Middlesex. NGR TQ 1097/9154 On the 11th & 12th May members of HADAS Fieldwork team and Ken Kirkman of the Pinner Local History Society conducted a small excavation at Pinner Hill Golf Club. Ken has been interested in the site for many years. It is thought that the site of a 17th century mansion house lies in the vicinity of the present 19th century clubhouse. There are some historical records but none indicates clearly where the previous mansion stood. In the past, Ken has observed and sketched parch-marks in the grass about 50 metres east of the present clubhouse, adjacent to the 18th green. Last year he asked if HADAS could conduct a resistivity survey over the same spot. The results were published in the Newsletter in August 2004. Although a large tree and a circular depression (thought to be the result of a cellar) obscured some of the plot, the parch-marks and resistivity results appear to be consistent in showing the outline of a building or structure on the edge of an east sloping terrace. Initially a 2xlm trench was opened, and just centimetres below the turf a brick wall foundation began to appear. The trench was eventually extended to 2x2m revealing the wall to be 0.60m wide running east-west along the trench with a return section heading north. This north return seems to have been butt-jointed as it was not integrated with the east-west wall and was slightly misaligned. The wall appears to be built using a variation of English Bond. the commonly used type in the 17th century. Sample bricks are thinner than modern examples, are red in colour and have no frog, which could point to a Tudor or post-Tudor date The more modern, regular brick appeared in the 1840s. At one point, the wall was excavated to a depth of 0.55m and still continuing, so substantial foundations still remain in the ground. Within the surrounding rubble were a number of glazed or vitrified brick headers, which may show the wall was decorated, diamond shapes were a favourite. The side of the wall facing north seemed to have a better quality pointing than the south. The surrounding clay sandy-soil contained a mixture of demolition material — brick fragments, peg tile etc. The small amount of finds included a sherd of Frechen stoneware from Germany, usually dated to between 1550 & 1700 from a drinking jug (J. Pearce, MoLAS), and a sherd of post-medieval redware 1650-1800. Some small fragments of vessel glass were also recovered. This was a small evaluation dig and there is yet to be a full post-excavation analysis, but the surveys, and now the dig indicate that a substantial building once stood here and the tentative dating evidence show it could well be the site of the 17th-century mansion house. Thanks to the HADAS members who took part, to Ken Kirkman and to the offices of Pinner Hill Golf Club.


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The Road to Rome in the Steps of a Medieval Pilgrim: a report on our May lecture by Mark Hassall by Graham Javes.

Mark Hassall is no stranger to HADAS lectures: he has frequently spoken to us on Roman archaeology. This evening however he declared himself 'obsessed with pilgrimages', having just completed his third pilgrimage. The lecture, illustrated with slides mainly taken on pilgrimage, began with a slide of the Hereford Mappa Mundi, showing the pilgrim routes, with Jerusalem as the centre of a medieval world of Christian consciousness. Mark spoke of the work today of the Confraternity of St James founded to promote pilgrimages. His first pilgrimage was to Santiago de Compostella, his second to Jerusalem, and, the most recent to Rome. Accompanied by two friends on the Roman walk, Mark followed an imagined route, which might have been taken by a distant ancestor, Thomas Hassall, the parish priest of Sandbach in Cheshire. In 1402 Thomas was granted permission by John de Burghill, bishop of Lichfield, in whose diocese Sandbach then lay, to visit the shrines of SS. Peter and Paul, for which he was granted 18 months leave of absence. Mark set out from Lichfield to follow this imagined route, via Eccleshall castle, demolished in the Civil War, and Sandbach, following the ancient line of a packhorse bridge near Chester. Thomas would not have crossed France due to the political situation in 1403. He might have taken the German route or gone through Gascony, perhaps taking a boat to Bordeaux and following river valleys to Avignon, then part of the Holy Roman Empire. It was this route which Mark Hassall walked, along pleasant canals and rivers, calling en-route at the Abbey of St Faith, and the cathedral of Toulouse, which houses the relics of all twelve apostles, eventually reaching the Eternal City on Good Friday. They had walked 900 miles in 70 days, not knowing where to stay - not something, he remarked, to be taken lightly. On Easter Sunday he received the Pope's blessing in St Peter's Square: the following Saturday, Pope John Paul II was dead. Mark tells us he is starting to write a fictional account of the journey of his ancestor Thomas Hassall.

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Secretary's Corner by Denis Ross

The Society's Annual General Meeting was held at Avenue House on 14 June 2005 with the President, Harvey Sheldon in the chair. 36 Members were present. The Annual Report and Accounts were duly approved. The Officers elected for the current year are: Chairman: Don Cooper

Vice Chairman Peter Pickering

Hon Treasurer: Jim Nelhams

Hon Secretary: Denis Ross

The following were duly elected as members of Committee: Christian Allen, Bill Bass, Jackie Brookes, Stephen Brunning, Andrew Coulson, Eric Morgan, Dorothy Newbury, June Porges, Mary Rawitzer, Andrew Selkirk and Tim Wilkins.

After the formal business had been concluded, the following presentations were made: Andrew Coulson on the work of the Battle of Barnet Working Group. Don Cooper on the progress by the Birkbeck College/HADAS course on final reports on the excavations by HADAS of the Church Farm and Church Terrace sites in Hendon in the '60s and '70s. The former is due to be published shortly, the latter could take another couple of years. Finally, Bill Bass on the Society's activities over the past year (including the recent excavation at Pinner Golf Club) with excellent accompanying photographs.

A thousand years of the Barnet boundary. by Graham Javes

2005 Is the thousandth anniversary of the granting to the abbot of St Albans, by charter of King Aethelred II, of an area of land described in the charter as 'woods attached to the old fort' of Kingsbury (St Albans). This land was to become the manor of Barnet, but the original charter has been lost for centuries. Recently a 17th-century copy was discovered in Brussels by Cambridge historian Professor Simon Keynes. Since this discovery, Dr Pamela Taylor (a member of HADAS) has done further research, and written a number of articles on the charter. To celebrate the anniversary she has produced a new article, updating our scholarship on the early origins of Barnet. In the 1990s the charter was thought to be circa 1005, now latest research has dated the document precisely to 1005, in fact, Pamela argues a case that it might be pinned down even closer, to November-December 1005. Pamela Taylor, 'A thousand years of the Barnet boundary', Hens Past and Present, No 5, Spring 2005, is published by Hertfordshire Association for Local History. Copies of this twice-yearly local history journal are sent free to members of Hertfordshire Association for Local History. It is available locally from Barnet Museum, Wood Street, Barnet (`M 020 8440 8066 for opening hours), price £2.00. A commemorative walk of the Barnet boundary was held in May, with many local organisations walking 'their section' of the boundary.

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Much ado at the castle.

Many will remember the lectures by our member Derek Batten. Derek you may recall 'inadvertently' bought a castle mound at Alderton in Northamptonshire, which became the subject of a Time Team excavation. Derek talked about the dig and we followed it up with a visit. The mound is now used by the Heartbreak Productions, described as 'Britain's premier open-air touring Shakespeare professional company'. This year it is performing 'Much Ado About Nothing', and Derek would welcome members who would like to attend a performance. Much Ado About Nothing Saturday & Sunday 13 & 14 August at 7.30pm. The Mount, Alderton, Towcester Licensed Bar & Refreshments Tickets £13.00 (£9.00 cons.) Phone Derek on 01327 811304

Wall of Silence: the peculiar murder of Jim Dawson at Bashall Eaves, by Jennie Cobban

Another member who moved away is Jennie Cobban, who returned to her native Lancashire a few years ago. Jennie wrote Geoffrey de Mandeville and London's Camelot, Ghosts, Mysteries and the Occult in Barnet as well as numerous articles for this Newsletter and letters to the press. Her latest book is the result of some two years investigation into the murder of her uncle, farmer Jim Dawson, one dark night in 1934, whilst walking home from his local pub. He was hit in the back by a home-made bullet, thought to have been fired, either from an antique gun, or a gun which may have been a 'poacher's arm'. Thinking he had been hit by a stone, Jim thought little of it, went to bed, only realising that he had been shot at midnight. Despite an x-ray showing the bullet lodged in his shoulder, Dawson refused treatment to remove it. When finally he did take the wound seriously, it was too late. He died of septicaemia four days later. The motive for the shooting was said by a family member to have been jealousy over a woman, but the stubborn refusal of the people of Bashall Eaves to co-operate with the police enquiry caused the village to be labelled, 'the village that would not talk' - hence the title, Wall of Silence. Even after seventy years, there was a reluctance to talk, but slowly the veil was lifted - just a little - aided by a reported recent deathbed confession. As a result of this research, the police are taking advice on the case, which they say was never closed: but an arrest is unlikely! Wall of Silence: the peculiar murder of Jim Dawson at Bashall Eaves, by Jennie Cobban, is published by Demdike Press, 3 Beech Grove, Chatburn, near Clitheroe, BB7 4AR, price £9.50.

London Archaeologist by Don Cooper

The Archaeological magazine for Londoners I am sure HADAS readers are aware that the London Archaeologist magazine, which is published four times a year, is the best way of keeping up-to-date on what is happening in London archaeology. Subscriptions cost £16, post free to addresses in the UK for four issues. To take out a subscription write to: London Archaeologist, 8 Woodview Crescent, Hildenborough, Tonbridge, Kent TN11 9ND Or visit their website www.londonarchaeologist.org.uk and download the appropriate form. To quote from the web site: "Archaeology in Greater London is observed, reported and reviewed in London Archaeologist, a quarterly magazine providing up-to-the minute news of excavations, fieldwork and artefact research. In addition to articles on recent and ongoing projects, each issue has a diary of events, lectures, evening courses and exhibitions as well as reviews of all the latest publications on London's archaeology." You will also receive an annual review of the fieldwork carried out in Greater London as well as a bibliography of the most recent publications. So, if you want to know what is happening in archaeology around London — do take out a subscription.

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Transport Corner by Andy Simpson

Lovers of the Northern Line(!) will be thrilled to know that another book has come out about the Northern Line extensions. No, not the usual and well-covered topic of the half-built 1930s and 40s extensions to Edgware via Mill Hill, and on via Edgware to Brockley Hill and Aldenham, but the original 1920s extension of the London Electric Railway from Golders Green to Edgware via Brent (now Brent Cross), Hendon, Colindale and Burnt Oak. This excellent little book, Northern Line Extensions Golders Green To Edgware 1922-1924, has been written by one of the London Transport Museum curators, Simon Murphy, and is part of the growing range of historical topic local books published by Tempus publishing, price £12.99. (ISBN 0 7524 3498 5) In 128 pages you get a pictorial tour of the line northwards from Golders Green, with at each point half-tone photos of the locations before, during and after the construction phase. Colindale was a very green place in 1922. Many of the photographs were taken as the official record during construction. The aerial photographs are particularly worthy of study. There is also a useful short historical introduction, several maps, and reproductions of contemporary adverts for London Underground and development companies, who soon filled the green fields along the route with houses. Despite the availability of mechanical excavators, the 'work in progress' shots include plenty of men with shovels!

Open Days at Turners Hall Farm, Mackerye End

There will be open days at the Roman villa excavation by St Albans Museums Services at Turners Hall Farm, Mackerye End, Wheathampstead, which HADAS visited at the beginning of the second digging season. The dates are 30-31 July and 27-28th August. Admission is free. There will also be an 'archaeology dig for the public' on 9-10 July and 23-24th July at a cost £20 per adult. To book for these contact Alison Turner-Rugg

The Next HADAS Dig - advance information.

In celebration of the museum's 50th anniversry, I IADAS will be conducting an excavation at Church Farmhouse Museum, Hendon, on 6 & 7 August 2005. We hope to find more traces of the museum's Roman, Saxon and Medieval past. Details in the next Newsletter, or contact Bill Bass (A' 020 8449 5666.

Wharram Percy: Life in a Medieval Village

This Deserted Medieval Village on the Yorkshire Wolds was excavated by Maurice Beresford and John Hurst, every summer from 1950-1990. On 16 July, a new major exhibition opens at Malton Museum, Malton, to interpret the site, which had been in continuous occupation since the Iron Age. The display has been partially financed by a £50,000 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund enabling this volunteer-run museum to employ a specialist team. The exhibition will include excavated skeletons with facial reconstructions, a partial reconstruction of a medieval house, and a virtual tour of the village as it might have appeared before its forced clearance by the landowner in the 14th century.


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Other Societies Events Compiled by Eric Morgan.

Sat-Sun 3-4 July, East Barnet Festival, Oak Hill Park, Church Hill Rd East Barnet. Lots of stalls, Barnet Borough Arts Council, stage music, exhibitions including World War II

Sun 3 July, 2.00-4.00pm, Friern Barnet & District Local History Society, walk, with Oliver Natelson & John Philpot (architect). Meet statue nr. Main Entrance, Friary Park, Friern Barnet Lane. Friary House & Park, St James' Church & cemetery. 2 hours, cost £1.

Thur 7 July, 7.30pm, London Canal Museum, 12-13 New Wharf Rd, NI. Surrey Canal and the Gas Industry, by Brian Sturt.

Sat 9 July, 10.00-5.00pm, Museum of Domestic Design and Architecture. Middlesex University Campus, Cat Hill. East Barnet. World War II Artefacts from MODA's archives, including the post war years. to celebrate Veterans' Awareness Week. Drop in session (2.00-3.00pm)

Sun 10 July, 12.00-9.30pm, Cricklewood Festival, Clitterhouse Playing Fields (by Hendon Football Club) Claremont Rd, NW2. HADAS will have a stall during the afternoon.

Sun 10 July, 2.00pm. Kensal Green Cemetery Open Day, Harrow Road, NW10 or Ladbroke Grove, W10. Tours, stalls, band, refreshments, etc. VE Day & VJ Day celebration. Willesden Local History Society stall.

Tues 12 July, 8.00pm. Amateur Geological Society, The Parlour, St Margaret's United Reform Church, Victoria Ave, N3. Earthquakes and Active Faults in Italy, by Dr Gerald Roberts (Birkbeek College).

Fri 15 July, 7.00pm. CoLAS. St Olave's Parish Hall, Mark Lane, EC3. The Roman Circus and other Recent Discoveries at Colchester, by Phillip Crummy (Colchester Archaeological Trust).

Sat-Sun 16-17 July. National Archaeological Weekend. Events throughout the country. Enfield Archaeological Society. Continuing search for the Tudor Elsyng Palace, Forty Hall. HADAS undertook resistivity survey. (EAS are also excavating previous Sat-Sun, 9-10 July).

Sun 17 July, 2.00-4.00pm. Friern Barnet & District Local History Society, walk, with Oliver Natelson, meet United Services Club, Dale Grove/Ballards Lane corner. Oldest roads & shops, 1840s houses, ancient hedges from 1730s. Discover where the nudist colony was. Cost £1.


Wed 20 July, 7.30pm. Willesden Local History Society, guided walk (2 miles) of Park Royal, led by Cliff Wadsworth, former workhouse, Willesden boundary, finish at Grand Junction Arms.

Thur 21 July, 8.00pm, Enfield Preservation Society, Jubilee Hall, corner Chase Side & Parsonage Lane, Enfield. Cannons, Castles & Cloisters, by Tony O'Connor.

Sat-Sun 23-24 July. CoLAS National Archaeology Weekend at the Tower of London. Free public displays on open space by the river wall, including artefacts, handling collections (CoLAS & LAARC) beachcombing (about 10.30 Sat, 11.30pm Sun), replicas, games.

Sun 31 July, 2.00-4.30pm, Friern Barnet & District Local History Society, Friern Hospital walk, with Oliver Natelson. Meet New Southgate Station forecourt. Ancient parish boundary, building of the railway and the old asylum, gatehouse, old cemetery & covered reservoir.



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