North East Research Group
A research group of the Department of Archaeology.
The immensely rich archaeology of the North of England is the basis for several Departmental research projects of international significance. We also maximise the research potential of archaeological fieldwork carried out in a commercial context, notably by Archaeological Services, the Department’s commercial arm.
What makes the archaeology of the region so special? At its heart are two World Heritage Sites (Durham Cathedral and Hadrian’s Wall) and a third candidate, the twin monastery of Wearmouth-Jarrow, home of the Anglo-Saxon historian Bede. At an earlier period, Durham was close to the Roman frontier and our focus on Roman archaeology in the region centres on major excavations at Binchester Roman fort, and on ongoing studies of Hadrian’s Wall including the recent Tales from the Frontier project. Older still is the important corpus of prehistoric rock art, one of the richest within Britain, complemented by the impressive suite of prehistoric monuments including the important Neolithic ritual enclosure at Marne Barracks, Catterick (North Yorkshire).
The Department’s strong engagement in early medieval Northumbria is marked by continuing interest in Wearmouth and Jarrow and by new excavations at the Bamburgh Bowl-Hole Anglian Cemetery. The Department is also home to the Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture, with forthcoming volumes on West Yorkshire and Lancashire. The later medieval period is represented by studies of the Durham cathedral complex and the archaeology of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Durham Archaeology seeks to involve local communities in these projects wherever possible, and the Binchester excavations, for example, are jointly organized with Durham County Council.