Hastings Area Archaeological Research Group
Registered Charity No.294989
NEWSLETTER - AUGUST 2004
ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS WERE DUE IN JANUARY, and a total of 120 members have already paid including 13 newly joined. 33 of last year's members have still not renewed, although we know that some students have now moved on to various universities. Each year we patiently remind those others (some of them the same every year!) who usually do renew belatedly, and for these a further renewal form is enclosed which please return to the Treasurer as soon as possible. The Summer "Journal" - a special edition wholly devoted to the Archaeology & History of Hastings Country Park - is distributed only to paid-up members. The rate is unchanged at £8 for ordinary membership, or £9 for one household or family where only one copy of each publication is required. For those who are retired, or full-time students, the individual rate is reduced to £7.
EXCAVATIONS AT GLOSSAMS PLACE, BECKLEY: will resume from from Saturday 18 September to Sunday 26 September. All those who have taken part in recent years will find enclosed the usual notice and booking form; anyone else who would like to join in should contact Mike Greenhalgh. We open the gate for cars between 0945 and 10.00 each morning, otherwise there is a ten-minute walk to the site, marked by HAARG signs at junctions - keep straight ahead, ignoring turnings to right and left.
Last May thirty members worked one or more days on the site, of whom 10 were newcomers. The main feature uncovered was an internal wall or screen foundation and traces of stone flooring; there is plenty remaining to be discovered. Laura Swarbrooke successfully completed her school "work experience" programme with an excellent diary and photographs.
DICKENS COTTAGE, 112 HIGH STREET: During Old Town Week a small excavation took place under the floor of the rear kitchen of this 15C house which is currently undergoing full conservation. Two stone-lined channels were discovered, thought to be for spring water rather than sewers. The site was open to the public along with the garden of 19 High Street opposite, where there were publication sales and displays of conservation work. Special thanks to Committee member Heather Grief for manning our stand which yielded a good sum for our funds. A full report is planned for the Winter Journal.
THERE WILL BE NO MEETING ON WED. 22 SEPT. as most members will be at the Beckley site that day. Why not pay us a visit there instead?
MEETING ROOM AND STORAGE ACCOMMODATION: The appeal in the April Newsletter for suggestions for new premises has not yet produced any response, but the need is increasingly urgent if HAARG is to survive next year.
WEEKLY INFORMAL MEETINGS OF HAARG MEMBERS: for the time being, these continue on Wednesday mornings from 10.30 to 12.00 at 61 All Saints Street, Hastings. The evening sessions on the first Wednesday each month remain suspended, as no-one other than the officers has attended for some time, but if any renewed interest is expressed in these they will be reinstated.
HAARG JOURNAL: the future of this was also raised in the last Newsletter but again not a single opinion has been expressed. We are now planning No.18 for next Winter, but the backlog of unpublished reports has largely been cleared. One suggestion is that we widen the scope of contents beyond the immediate Hastings area, to report discoveries in other parts of East Sussex; the archaeology of our district, which has always been apart from the Downs and their hinterland, is so different. Offers are sought of contributions from anyone who is active in archaeology or research. Assistance can be given in report writing when needed.
HAARG COMMITTEE: at the last meeting on 21 July, Mike Austin was co-opted to the Committee; Mike moved to Bexhill from the London area where he had previously completed a degree in Archaeology at Birkbeck College, and regularly attends our Wednesday morning meetings and our excavations.
THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING OF HAARG has been provisionally planned for Wednesday 23 February 2005. Please keep this date free. Full details and agenda will be sent out with the January Newsletter.
ST. HELENS CHURCH RUINS: The Sussex Heritage Trust, which has undertaken responsibility for this scheduled ancient monument, called a meeting of interested non-official parties at Hastings Town Hall on 3 August and proposed the setting up of a "group of friends" which would be in a good position to apply for funding. HAARG was represented by Field Officer Mike Greenhalgh, and by members Tony Moore and Eunice Hance who between them keep a daily watch on the site. We agreed to support the new group but without any financial liability. The Borough Council is hoping to have the farm buildings listed and included in a new Conservation Area.
WATCHING BRIEFS continue to be carried out by Mike Greenhalgh, supported occasionally by other members including Pauline Kingswood in Rye and Eric Wetherill in Playden and Rye Hill. Any discoveries will be recorded in the next Journal.
Mike has also represented HAARG at some of the quarterly Sussex Archaeology Forum sessions in Lewes, while Secretary Lynn Russell supported by Kevin Cornwell deputise on other occasions.
THE SUSSEX ARCHAEOLOGICAL SOCIETY is holding its Autumn Conference at the University of Sussex on Sat. 11 September, on the theme of "Saxon Sussex: Six Centuries" and there may still be time to book. HAARG is affiliated to the Society.
THE CENTRE FOR CONTINUING EDUCATION is holding a joint conference with the Council for British Archaeology on "The Cinque Ports" at the University on Sat. 13 November. Details are expected shortly.
The CCE has a further all-day event on Sat. 20 November on "The Sussex Ouse Research Project".
The CCE is also offering courses at the new University Centre, Hastings in Havelock Road during the winter. Archaeological Survey is on Tuesday evenings from 5 October and Industrial Archaeology on Thursday evenings from 13 January 2005 (not 2004 as in their publicity!). Details are available from HAARG.
040923 040924 050123 061005