HADAS was founded in 1961 by Themistocles Constantinides with one aim: to find and prove, on the ground, the Saxon origins of Hendon. Since that time the Society has expanded in area, today encompassing the whole of the London Borough of Barnet and excavation and research now covers all archaeological periods.
HADAS has been one of the most active local societies within the Greater London area. Major excavations have included the West Heath Mesolithic camp site at Hampstead; the Roman site of Sulloniacis at Brockley Hill, a centre of pottery production, to which we have returned as recently as 1999; Roman Hendon as well as medieval Chipping Barnet, where many sites around the High Street have been investigated.
With a membership from Kent to the Orkneys (not to mention the hidden depths of Hendon!) HADAS is a strong and active local society dedicated to investigating our archaeological heritage.
The objects of HADAS are the advancement of archaeological and historical research and education for the public benefit, with particular reference to the archaeology and history of the London Borough of Barnet.
Benefits of membership include: programme of lectures and outings, a monthly Newsletter, use of our extensive library, opportunities for fieldwork.
The HADAS year usually starts with outings during the months of June to August, a "long weekend" in September to an area of archaeological interest, monthly lectures from October to May with the Annual General Meeting in June. The December slot is reserved for the Society's Christmas dinner which often incorporates a visit to a place of historic interest.
Our past work in the Borough has uncovered much of its history, details of which are available in our many publications. The "digging team" regularly meets at the Garden Room at Avenue House usually on Sundays when finds processing, writing-up and general discussion on future excavation takes place. Members are invited to drop in on these sessions.
Research is actively encouraged and, where appropriate, small teams set up to investigate themes and areas which might lead to excavation and publication. The following ongoing subject areas
HADAS is actively involved in the planning process. Planning Applications within the Borough are routinely monitored and observations are submitted when necessary. Site watching on development sites is often undertaken and liaison with English Heritage on these matters has always been maintained. Additional team members are always required.
The results of the Society's work are published as specific reports, in our Newsletter or in book form. A book stall is usually a feature of our display at archaeological conferences.
A rota of twelve editors produces the monthly Newsletter, our main means of communication. It contains details of forthcoming lectures and outings as well as reports of the same, news items, a regular "sales and wants" sheet and booking forms for outings. Those wishing to edit an edition need to contact the Newsletter Co-ordinator, those with articles and other contributions should submit these to the relevant monthly editor. Correspondence and queries for publication are also welcome.
As a registered charity, the aim of HADAS is to educate and inform. To this end we have built up a library of over two thousand books, pamphlets, journals and periodicals all of which are available for loan to our members. The library has proved invaluable to our many members who have studied part-time for an archaeological qualification (usually the certificate or diploma in archaeology from Birkbeck College).