For our third foray into the world of Archaeology Societies, we head north once again, this time to cover the NorthEast region. This covers Northumberland, County Durham, Tyne and Wear, and Teesside (including parts of North Yorkshire). The Northumberland National Park and part of Hadrian’s Wall both lie within this region.

North East Region (Creative Commons)

Despite the apparent archaeological riches with in the area, there appear to be very few archaeological societies with a strong web presence in the area. There are however, sites which provide contact details for many societies, either via email or old fashioned post.

Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland

150 years old and based in Durham, but with interests throughout the region, the society aims to provide an opportunity for all those interested in archaeology and architectural history to find out more, visit places of interest and experience hands on activities. The Society has an active fieldwork programme throughout the year, and it is a partner in the Binchester project, with members participating in the community excavation programme there. Successful joint meetings with the North East Vernacular Architecture Group and CBA North have enabled experienced archaeologists and architectural historians to share their knowledge and skills with others, and beginners are always welcome.

Members of the Society receive the society newsletter twice a year and volumes of the Durham Archaeological Journal on publication, and they are given the opportunity to purchase back issues of the Journal (where available) and the Society’s occasional research reports at very reasonable prices. Sample newsletters are downlodable from the society website.

Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne

The Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle upon Tyne is the country’s oldest provincial antiquarian society, founded in 1813. They have a Facebook page which includes details of upcoming events. It has always been an important vehicle for the publication of research on Hadrian’s Wall and the Romans in North-East England. Individual membership is £33 including the paperback edition of Archaeologia Aeliana, or £39 including the hardback edition. A discount is available for direct debit payents.

Archaeologia Aeliana is the Society’s journal, and many of the early back issues (1822-1904 and therefore out of copyright) have been digitised and are freely available. The journal covers all aspects of the history of North-East England, ranging from archaeology (including excavation reports) and buildings to historical and documentary research, and from prehistory to the present.

Association of Northumberland Local History Societies

Not so much archaeology, but some of our readers may be interested in the more focussed field of Local History. If so, then this is the site to visit, with just over 50 such member societies in the North East region.

Northumberland Archaeological Group

This group does not appear to have it’s own website but is listed on the web site as meeting once a month in winter, based in North Shields. The group “offers a wide range of archaeological activities. annual excavation guided walks and field trips lecture programmes, members journal, social events, and also produce a publication “Northern Archaeology”.”

UPDATE (Feb 2015): The group is based in Newcastle upon Tyne, not North Shields as previously stated, and a web site is now available (see link below).

Useful links