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Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 – 2024

Newsletter 638 – May 2024

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 638 May 2024 Edited by Jim Nelhams

SUBSCRIPTIONS fell due on 1st April. The amounts are unchanged from last year – £15 for a full member plus £5 for an additional member at the same address. Full time students pay £6. Standing Order payments have been received. Thank you if you pay by cheque or directly to our bank and have already done so. If you have not yet paid, please do so now.

It saves HADASs money if you pay directly online to our bank account. Our account is Sort Code 40-52-40 Account no. 00083254 in the name of Hendon and District Archaeological Society. Please show the description as “Subs” followed by your surname. If you prefer to pay by cheque or cash, please send your payment to Jim Nelhams at the address shown on the back page of this newsletter.

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

Lectures are normally face-to-face, though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE, 7.45 for 8pm.
Buses 13, 125, 143, 326 and 460 pass close by, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 also passes close to Finchley Central Station. Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after the talk.

Tuesday 14th May 2024

Owen Humphreys (Finds Specialist at Museum of London Archaeology):

“London’s Roman Tools”

Tuesday 11th June 2024 at 7.30pm

HADAS Annual General Meeting followed by a lecture:

PLEASE NOTE EARLY START TIME of 7.30pm

Your chance to let us know how we are doing and what you would like us to do for you. The meeting will be followed by a talk on “Clay Pipes” by our President, Jacqui Pearce. Members will receive reports and information about the meeting. Still time for nominations and resolutions.

Tuesday 12th September 2024

Wendy Morrison (Chilterns Heritage & Archaeology Partnership (CHAP):

“Beacon of the Past Hillforts Project”


Other Dates for your diary:
VE day celebration at Avenue House on 3rd/5th May 2025
Barnet Medieval Festival 8th/9th June 2024 at Barnet Rugby Football Club, Byng Road, Barnet.
Heritage Day at Avenue House on Sunday, 1st September 2024
RAF Museum – Light & Flight in November 2026 more details later.

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What is Heritage Barnet? Don Cooper

Heritage Barnet is a loose assembly of Barnet-based societies involved in cultural heritage in the Borough under the chairmanship of Martin Russell MBE, Representative Deputy Lieutenant of Barnet. The inaugural meeting took place at Avenue House (now Stephens House and Gardens) on Friday, 27th January 2023. Its role is “to act as a focal point for existing and new local heritage bodies”. The proposed objectives include:

  • To stimulate and extend interest in heritage in all parts of the Borough particularly those which are under-represented in this field.
  • To co-ordinate all the various heritage groups.
  • To make each other aware of, oversee and record heritage locations, objects and activities under threat and work for their conservation/safety.
  • To promote best practice and exchange information free of charge between existing heritage groups. (This could involve both virtual and in-person communication).
  • To identify opportunities to promote awareness of heritage throughout the Borough as well as provide a forum for societies to advertise and share their resources and assets.
  • To make available to schools a range of resources, particularly relating to local history which now features prominently on the Primary National Curriculum.

In pursuing these objectives, Heritage Barnet:

  • will seriously consider the problem of personnel and attraction of volunteers.
  • will adopt Stephens House as its home.
  • will endeavour to hold meetings in a range of locations around the Borough in order to promote its message.
  • will seek to arrange activities, displays and events around the Borough, (some of which could piggy-back on other events including the possibility of a Heritage Week).
  • will be apolitical.

Heritage Barnet

  • will not be unnecessarily bureaucratic and will not involve subscriptions.
  • will not become a membership organisation in its own right.
  • will not seek to become a trust or limited company.

The following are some of the members of Heritage Barnet.

  • Finchley Society
  • Friern Barnet Local History Society
  • RAF museum
  • Local Family History Society
  • Barnet Museum
  • Barnet Arts Council
  • Barnet Archives
  • Stephens House and Gardens
  • St Mary’s Hendon
  • Local Councillors
  • Barnet Medieval Festival

The latest meeting was held on Friday, 19th April 2024 at Avenue House and well attended.

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There were discussions on the fate of Tudor Hall a Grade 11 listed building and one of the oldest buildings in Barnet which is being sold by Barnet College.

The issue of Church Farmhouse, Hendon a Grade 11* listed building one of the most important buildings in the Borough which is being relinquished by Middlesex University and returned to Barnet Council, was discussed. These buildings are important to the heritage and history of Barnet.

It is important that we ensure that our local councilors are aware of the importance of these buildings to make sure the future of the building is secured for the people of Barnet.
Short talks were given by:

Lester Hillman, a local historian on the Battle of Barnet.
Reverend Dr. June Gittoes, Vicar of St Mary’s Hendon on her church and local parishes.

HADAS Archaeological Watching Brief Michael Hacker

Highgate Wood Clay extraction pit
April 2024

Highgate Wood, London N10 3JN
LB Haringey
Grid ref: TQ 23348891
Elevation, 100.43 m OD
Date: 08/04/2024
Site Code: HI024

Background and conclusions

A series of archaeological interventions in Highgate Wood in the 1970s showed that during the 1st and 2nd century AD an important Roman pottery-manufacturing site existed on the site of Highgate Wood. Locally sourced clay was used to build the pottery kilns and to manufacture a wide range of pottery.

In April 2024, the Friends of Highgate Wood Roman Kiln (FoHRK) excavated a small pit in Highgate Wood to extract clay for use in the manufacture of replica pottery. The pit was located close to the site of the Roman pottery,


The Hendon and District Archaeological Society (HADAS) conducted a watching brief during the excavation of the pit. This confirmed that no significant archaeological deposits were present and observed that a seam of clay, suitable for pottery production exited at this location.

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Mary Rose Whistles Jim Nelhams

A previous newsletter contained details of musical instruments discovered aboard the wreck of the Mary Rose. These included two square fiddles, a “tenor Shawm”, three tabor pipes (long wooden pipes) and a drum.

Excavations have continued in the Solent and among other discoveries are four silver whistles. Readers will be familiar with whistles used for relaying orders and indicating the time on ships, much as bugles are used by the army. The shrill notes of whistles would have been audible above gunfire. Three of the whistles were suspended on silver chains, the fourth, the smallest, on a ribbon threaded with gold,

Such whistles are still used today in modern navies, and though more typically made of chrome-plated brass, they are identical to those used by Henry VIII’s men. A well-known use is “piping the side” as visitors of rank are welcomed at the head of the gangway.

Devon has Earth’s oldest fossil forest Stewart Wild

Earth’s oldest fossil forest has been found – and it’s near a Butlin’s.

The fossilised forest, dating from 390 million years ago, has been found in the high sandstone cliffs along the Devon and Somerset coast of southwest England by researchers from the Universities of Cambridge and Cardiff.

It predates the previously oldest known fossil forest, in New York State, by about four million years. Their findings were reported in the Journal of the Geological Society.

Researchers say that the fossilised trees were found in the Hangman Sandstone Formation near Minehead, on the south bank of the Bristol Channel, near what is now a Butlin’s holiday camp.
Dr Christopher Berry, from Cardiff’s School of Earth and Environmental Studies, said: “It was amazing to see them so near home. It is our first opportunity to look directly at the ecology of this forest, and to evaluate its impact on the sedimentary system.”

SOURCE: Daily Telegraph, 8 March 2024, item edited by Stewart Wild

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Welsh Harp update

From Barnet Council

With the works nearing completion at the Welsh Harp Brent Reservoir, national waterways charity Canal & River Trust is now allowing the reservoir to once again re-fill with water.

The reservoir repairs and maintenance, supported with funding from the People’s Postcode Lottery, will ensure that the popular green space remains safe and available for residents of Barnet. The works have overhauled the infrastructure that controls the day-to-day water levels in the reservoir.

The reservoir remains open to the public throughout the works, but signs are in place warning visitors not to walk on the reservoir’s drained area and mud for their own safety.

From Canals and Rivers Trust

Project update: 16 April 2024

We’ve now successfully completed a range of critical works at the reservoir. These works include the replacement of the pulley wheels, brackets and chains to both sluice gates which will allow the gates to be safely operated in the future.

We were also able to inspect the dam structure and undertake a range of minor concrete repairs.

The painting works to the Valve Tower to protect the metal structure from future corrosion, is progressing very well. We’ve completed the painting between the -5.5m and -2.0m (below weir crest) levels. We’ll be painting the remaining upper section from a floating pontoon to allow the works to continue as the reservoir refills.

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Exhibition at British Museum Jim Nelhams

Legion – life in the Roman army

From family life on the fort to the brutality of the battlefield, experience Rome’s war machine through the people who knew it best – the soldiers who served in it.
The Roman empire spanned more than a million square miles and owed its existence to its military might. By promising citizenship to those without it, the Roman army – the West’s first modern, professional fighting force – also became an engine for creating citizens, offering a better life for soldiers who survived their service.

Expansive yet deeply personal, this exhibition transports you across the empire, as well as through the life and service of a real Roman soldier, Claudius Terentianus, from enlistment and campaigns to enforcing occupation then finally, in Terentianus’ case, retirement. Objects include letters written on papyri by soldiers from Roman Egypt and the Vindolanda tablets – some of the oldest surviving handwritten documents in Britain. The tablets, from the fort near Hadrian’s wall, reveal first-hand what daily life was like for soldiers and the women, children and enslaved people who accompanied them.

Roman military history perhaps stretches as far back at the sixth century BC but it wasn’t until the first emperor, Augustus (63 BC – AD 14), that soldiering became a career choice. While the rewards of army life were enticing – those in the legions could earn a substantial pension and those entering the auxiliary troops could attain citizenship for themselves and their families – the perils were real. Soldiers were viewed with fear and hostility by civilians – not helped by their casual abuses and extra roles as executioners and enforcers of occupation – and they could meet grim ends off, as well as on, the battlefield. Finds in Britain include the remains of two soldiers probably murdered and clandestinely buried in Canterbury, suggesting local resistance.

What did life in the Roman army look like from a soldier’s perspective? What did their families make of life in the fort? How did the newly-conquered react? Legion explores life in settled military communities from Scotland to the Red Sea through the people who lived it.

Visitors are advised that this exhibition contains human remains. The British Museum is committed to curating human remains with care, respect and dignity. Find out more about human remains at the British Museum.

Admission is by ticket only. The exhibition continues until 23rd June 2024.

OTHER SOCIETIES’ EVENTS Compiled by Eric Morgan

NOT ALL SOCIETIES OR ORGANISATIONS HAVE RETURNED TO PRE-COVID CONDITIONS, PLEASE CHECK WITH THEM BEFORE PLANNING TO ATTEND.

Thursday 16th May, 7 pm. London Archaeologist Lecture Theatre, U.C.L. Institute of Archaeology. 31-34 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PY. Annual Lecture and AGM. Also on Zoom. AGM will be followed by Annual Lecture – Recent Excavations near Holborn Viaduct and the Unexpected discovery of a Roman Funerary Bed – given by Alex Blanks (MOLA). Please book on www.londonarchaeologist.org.uk. Free.

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Friday 17th May, 7 pm. COLAS, St. Olave’s Church, Hart Street, London EC3R 7NB. Talk also on Zoom. Excavations at Maritime Academy, Frindsbury – A new Palaeolithic Site – by Letty Increy (U.C.L.). Please book via Eventbrite. Visit www.colas.org.uk. HADAS may send out the link details to its members. Visitors £3 at the church.

Saturday 8th June, 12-5 pm. Highgate Festival. Pond Square and South Grove, Highgate Village, London, N6. Lots of stalls including Highgate Society and Highgate Literary and Scientific Institute. Also Crafts, Food, Music.

Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th June, 10.30 am. – 5 pm. Barnet Medieval Festival. Barnet R.F.C. Grounds, End of Byng Road, Barnet, EN5 4NP. Lots of stalls including HADAS, Barnet Museum and L.H.S., Barnet Society, Battlefields Trust. Battle of Barnet Re-enactments. Food and Drink Stalls. For more info please visit www.barnetmedievalfestival.org.

Monday 10th June, 7.30 pm. Barnet Museum and Local History Society, St. John The Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, Corner High Street/Wood Street, Barnet. EN5 4BW. The HADAS Barnet Hopscotch Excavation. Talk by Bill Bass (HADAS). Please visit www.barnetmuseum.co.uk.

Friday 14th June, 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society. Jubilee Hall, 2 Parsonage Lane/Junction Chase Side, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. Medieval Buildings. Talk by James Wright. Please visit www.enfarchsoc.org. for further details. Non-members £1.50 at the door. Refreshments to be available.

Saturday 22nd June 3 pm. Wembley History Society. Barham Park Library, Harrow Road, Sudbury, HA0 2HB. (Please note different venue and time and day). Wembley’s Air Raid Wardens in WW2. Talk by Philip Grant (Archivist).

Sunday 23rd June, 12-6 pm. East Finchley Festival. Cherry Tree Wood, East Finchley, London. N2 9QH. (Entrance off the High Road, opposite Tube station). Lots of stalls including Finchley Society, Friends of Cherry Tree Wood (Roger Chapman, HADAS). North London U3A. Also crafts, Food, Music.

Wednesday 26th June, 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society, North Middlesex Golf Club, The Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, London. N20 0NL. Holborn and Little Italy. Talk by Diane Burstein (Blue Badge Guide). Please visit www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk. Non-members £2. Bar available.

Thursday 27th June, 7.30 pm. Finchley Society. Drawing Room, Avenue (Stephens’) House, 17 East End Road, London. N3 3QE. Annual General Meeting – For further details please visit www.finchleysociety.org.uk. Non-members £2 at the door. Refreshments in the interval.

Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th June, 12-6 pm. East Barnet Festival. Oak Hill Park, Churchill Road, East Barnet, EN4 8JP. Lots of stalls including craft and food stalls, bar, music, stage, classic cars on Sunday. Please visit www.eastbarnetfestival.co.uk for details.

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Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350)
e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50, Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP (07855 304488)
e-mail; treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec. Jim Nelhams, 61, Potters Road Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8449 7076)
e-mail; membership@hadas.org.uk

Website at: www.hadas.org.uk join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.

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Newsletter 637 – April 2024

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 637 April 2024 Edited by Sue Willetts

SUBSCRIPTIONS fall due on 1st April. The amounts are unchanged from last year – £15 for a full member plus £5 for an additional member at the same address. Full time students pay a reduced amount of £6. If you pay by standing order, you need do nothing.

It saves HADAS money if you pay directly online to our bank account. Our account is Sort Code 40-52-40 Account no. 00083254 in the name of Hendon and District Archaeological Society. Please show the description as “Subs” followed by your surname.

If you prefer to pay by cheque or cash, please send your payment to Jim Nelhams at the address shown on page 12 of this newsletter.

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

Lectures are normally face-to-face, though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE, 7.45 for 8pm.
Buses 13, 125, 143, 326 and 460 pass close by, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 also passes close to Finchley Central Station. Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after the talk.

Tuesday 9th April 2024

Ian Jones, (Chair of Enfield Archaeological Society)

Traders, Bargees, Ferrymen and a Seagull: Life and Work in Roman Pisa.

Tuesday 14th May 2024

Owen Humphreys (Finds Specialist at the Museum of London Archaeology):

London’s Roman Tools.

Tuesday 11th June 2024

HADAS Annual General Meeting. Followed by a a talk by Jacqui Pearce: Clay Pipes.

Tuesday 12th September 2024

Wendy Morrison (Chilterns Heritage & Archaeology Partnership (CHAP):

Beacon of the Past Hillforts Project.

Tuesday 8th October 2024

TBA

Tuesday 12th November 2024

TBA

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Update on the Highgate Roman Kiln Project Eric Morgan

Update from report in HADAS April 2023 newsletter. This is now known as the Firing London’s Imagination. The website has full details. All 21 sections of the Highgate Roman Kiln Project (a C2nd CE Romano-British kiln excavated in Highgate Wood) have been removed from the Wood and the store of Bruce Castle Museum. The careful process of conservation has now begun in the studio of the Natural Building Centre, Conwy, in Wales. In August 2024 a replica of the Highgate Roman Kiln will be built in Highgate Wood. Graham Taylor of Potted History. expert historic kiln builder will lead the programme. The first firing of the kiln is planned for 1st September 2024.

Sheila Woodward Jim Nelhams

Long serving members will remember Sheila Woodward, a member for many years. Sheila, with Tessa Smith, arranged a number of day-outings for Hadas. She also took part in a number of digs including West Heath. A resident of Stanmore, Sheila left Hadas before Covid, having moved because of her health into a home in Edgware.

Sheila was a churchwarden at St Lawrence, Little Stanmore, and a regular guide to visitors to the church, where in the past Handel regularly played the organ. One of our Christmas outings was to the church, where we were entertained by Finchley Chamber Choir singing some Handel anthems.

On March 21st, Sheila reached her one hundredth birthday, celebrated by a small gathering of family and friends. Sheila is well cared for in the home, though she has lost her mobility. Her memory of past activities including HADAS, but not more recent events, is good.

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Aircraft manufacture at Duple Coachworks in Hendon Andy Simpson

At a recent London County Council Tramways Trust meeting, in a break from discussing our funding of various preserved London tram restoration projects, fellow Trustee Dave Jones, whose late father had served in Royal Air Force Bomber Command as a rear gunner in a Handley Page Halifax four-engined heavy bomber during World War Two, kindly brought in a wartime publication that he had recently acquired for me to see, as he knew I would be interested from both an aviation and local history perspective.

In 1925, Duple Bodies and Motors Ltd. moved from Hornsey to a new factory on The Hyde, West Hendon. After delays in completion of the large new factory which meant Duple workers replacing the original contractors in its construction, production began there in 1926. In 1934 the works expanded over the site of the adjoining villa, Cowleaze House and its garden, dating to around 1800. The site eventually covered 12 ½ acres.

Here they constructed single deck motor coach bodies in particular until they ceased operations at the Hyde in 1970 when the Head office there finally closed, having moved most of its operations to Blackpool in 1968 when the actual factory buildings were sold to industrial property developers Messrs. Ronald Lyon Estates (Who, along with their colourful chairman of that name, had a fascinating corporate history themselves…).

Dave Jones points out that as well as motor coaches, Duple had also built a few double deck buses, some goods vehicles, and had a contract with the GPO and built a large number of Post Office Royal Mail and Royal Mail Telephones vans.

The factory site was duly redeveloped into an industrial estate, and later became a new build Sainsbury’s superstore, which opened on 15 February 1994, with all traces of the former factory removed. This will shortly itself be demolished with a new store, scheduled to open later in 2024, incorporated into the lower level of one of the eleven high-rise apartment blocks of up to 28 stories (!) housing 1,309 flats currently being built on the whole site from 2020 as part of the ten-year Silk Park development.

The book itself is a glossy commemorative publication published in August 1945 just before the end of the war and intended for those who had worked on Halifax production, with many photos of the Halifax production process. Other copies do survive, with at least three in the collections of the RAF Museum.

For general technical and historical details of the Halifax, including illustrations, see;

Handley Page Halifax | Classic Warbirds
Handley-Page Halifax (airvectors.net)
Handley Page Halifax – Not Quite a Lancaster – PlaneHistoria

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Duple Works Head Office building seen looking east from Edgware Road with its trolleybus wires.

An excellent aerial view of the whole Duple site can be found here;

EAW043289 ENGLAND (1952). The Duple Coachbuilding Works on Edgware Road, The Hyde, 1952. This image was marked by Aerofilms Ltd for photo editing. | Britain From Above

With a workforce of 1,000, Duple made a significant contribution to wartime bomber aircraft production; As part of the London Aircraft Production Group it produced 750 front fuselage sections (including all of those fitted to the LAPG’s 710 Halifaxes) in their Hendon works; a significant proportion of the 6,118 Halifaxes built, The L,A.P. Group at its peak employed 9,000 people, many of them women.

Serving with the RAF until 17th March 1952, latterly in the meteorological reconnaissance role based in Gibraltar, just four Halifaxes survive in whole or part today in museums in the UK and Canada. As part of the nationwide network of ‘Halifax Group’ sub-contractors – 41 factories in all- the L.A.P. Group consisted of the London Passenger Transport Board’s Aldenham Works (originally built prewar to serve the uncompleted Northern Line extension from Edgware via Brockley Hill to Elstree and where the Halifax sub- assemblies built elsewhere were assembled and tested prior to final test flying and delivery to RAF units from new facilities at the nearby Leavesden airfield, to where the parts were taken by road, the first, B Mk.II Serial No BB189, first flown on 8 December 1941- the day after Pearl Harbour- and delivered to the RAF on 10 January 1942).

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Extract from the commemorative book – photos at the L.P.T.B. Aldenham works – Halifax fuselage/wing centre sections at the top, Halifax Mk.III. forward fuselage sections below.
These would have been produced at Duple, Hendon.

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Other companies involved were Park Royal Coach Works Ltd, Acton, The Express Motor and Body Works Ltd, Enfield, Chrysler Motors Ltd, Kew and Duple Bodies and Motors Ltd, Hendon. Established in 1940 under the direction of the Ministry of Aircraft Production, they delivered 450 of the Rolls Royce Merlin powered Halifax Mk. II aircraft and a further 260 of the Bristol Hercules radial powered Mk.III variant.

With the end of the war in sight and production contracts being cut back towards the end of the war, the LAPG delivered its last Halifax, a Mk.III, serial number PN460, on 16 April 1945. She was aptly christened ‘London Pride’ at a special ceremony and gave a seriously low-level flying display to the assembled VIPs as she departed!

On the 26th of November 2006, archaeologists from the Warsaw Uprising Museum in Poland, presented the remains of a Halifax (JP276 “A”) that was found in southern Poland, near the city of Dabrowa Tarnowska. It was shot down on the night of the 4th/5th of August 1944 whilst returning from the “air-drop-action” during the Warsaw uprising. This is particularly significant, as this is the first wreckage of a London Aircraft Production Group built Halifax, including its Park Royal Coachworks built parts, to have been recovered. For further details see: 342-London-Aircraft-Production-Group.pdf (rchs.org.uk).

Another view of the Duple main office block, which was to the north of the showroom, taken in the 1950s. The coach shown is one of the classic (and long lived) Bedford OB type delivered to Crosville, bus and coach operators in the Merseyside and North Wales areas.

Duple official view, from the collection of Dave Jones to whom thanks for this and the picture details.

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Musket balls solve mystery of ‘lost’ Civil War battlefield Stewart Wild

A seven-year search has identified the ‘lost’ site of an English Civil War battlefield, solving one of the conflict’s enduring mysteries. The discovery shows the Battle of Stow in Gloucestershire was fought nearly a mile from where Historic England believed the fighting took place. It follows five archaeological surveys by the Battlefields Trust charity and the re-examination of contemporary accounts of the struggle between Roundheads and Cavaliers. The Trust had long suspected that a stone monument put up by locals in 2002 to commemorate the battle near Stow-on-the-Wold was in the wrong place because of a lack of war relics on the site. Its latest survey by archaeologists and metal detectorists has unearthed dozens of 17th-century musket balls and powder caps from infantry and cavalry weapons in farmland half a mile from the town, proving that the battle was not fought at the site registered by Historic England, says the trust.

Trust research co-ordinator Simon Marsh said: “We’ve told them that this is where we think the battle was fought based on the evidence we’re providing. We recognise that it’s a big change to the current registration.”

The fighting, in March 1646, was the last major battle of the first Civil War between Charles I and Parliament. Roundhead forces caught up with the King’s last remaining army as it tried to link up with Charles thirty miles away in Oxford. The hour-long battle ended with the outnumbered royalist infantry retreating into the centre of Stow where the fighting continued.
One of the main streets “ran red with royalist blood”, according to local legend, before their commander, Lord Jacob Astley, was forced to surrender in the market square. Charles realised that the end was in sight and gave himself up soon afterwards to the Scottish army at Newark, Nottinghamshire, in May 1646.

It is not the first time that Britain’s battlefield maps have been redrawn. In 2016, a memorial stone at Battle Abbey in East Sussex marking the spot where King Harold was killed at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 was moved 20ft after experts decided it was in the wrong place.

SOURCE: Daily Telegraph, 14 January 2024, item edited by Stewart Wild.

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A Roman egg found – during dig at a site called Berryfields in Buckinghamshire.

The site was excavated by Oxford Archaeology. Archaeologists and naturalists have been astonished to find a cache of 1,700-year-old speckled chicken eggs discovered in a Roman pit during a dig in Buckinghamshire. A scan has revealed that one of the eggs contains liquid – thought to be a mix of yolk and albumen. The “Aylesbury egg” is one of four that were found alongside a woven basket, pottery vessels, leather shoes and animal bone in 2010 as a site was being explored ahead of a major development. Unfortunately, three of the eggs broke, producing an unforgettable sulphurous smell, but one was preserved complete.

As Edward Biddulph, the senior project manager at Oxford Archaeology commented this is thought to be the only intact egg from the period in Britain. Dana Goodburn-Brown, an archaeological conservator and materials scientist, suggested they scan it to help decide how best to preserve it. Biddulph said the egg had been deliberately placed in a pit that had been used as a well for malting and brewing – a wet area next to a Roman road.

Photograph used with permission from Oxford Archaeology

It may have been the eggs were placed there as a votive offering. The basket found may have contained bread. The egg has been taken to the Natural History Museum in London. Biddulph said it had felt a little daunting riding on the tube and walking around the capital with such an extraordinary and fragile egg in his care.

A tiny hole may be made in the egg to extract the contents and try to find out more about the bird that laid it. Goodburn-Brown said: “The egg ranks as one of the coolest and most challenging archaeological finds to investigate and conserve. Being the temporary caretaker and investigator of this Roman egg counts as one of the major highlights of my 40-year career.”

SOURCE: Guardian 12 February 2024, edited by Sue Willetts.

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Newsletter Editors – appeal for volunteers (also contributors).

Please help your society by offering to be a compiler for one of our monthly newsletters. Contributions are sent to each editor by email not later than the middle of the month. The editor arranges them in a standardised format (4, 8 or 12 pages). This is then forwarded (in Word format) to Sue Willetts – and your job is done!

She creates a pdf copy for the printer, and a version for the webpage.
Jim Nelhams kindly emails the e-newsletter to members. Please send any expressions of interest to Don Cooper (Chair). Details on the back page.

The newsletter does not write itself, nor is the editor expected to write all the contributions. Relevant articles are welcome from all sources.

New Exhibition in Peterborough Museum – Introducing Must Farm, a Bronze Age Settlement. Sue Willetts

The exhibition funded by both Historic England and Peterborough Museum focuses on an introduction to the story of this significant Bronze Age site, dubbed “Britain’s Pompei” – an extraordinary insight into everyday life almost 3,000 years ago. The site is a pile-dwelling settlement in Whittlesey, Cambridgeshire.

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The Must Farm settlement is a fascinating discovery, with the site only being occupied for under a year before it was destroyed by a catastrophic fire. The everyday objects found there are remarkable – rarely preserved personal items including textiles – some of the finest produced in Europe at that time.

Pots and jars complete with meals and utensils, and exotic glass beads – some of which were manufactured in the Middle East revealing a sophistication not normally associated with the Bronze Age.

The museum is a 6 minute walk from Peterborough Station. It is open Tuesday to Saturday 10.00 – 16.00 and is Free to visit. Peterborough Museum & Art Gallery, Priestgate, Peterborough, PE1 1LF. More information from website – link below.
Introducing Must Farm, a Bronze Age Settlement- Museum & Art Gallery (peterboroughmuseum.org.uk).

Other Societies’ Events Eric Morgan

Note: Not all Societies or organisations have returned to pre-Covid conditions. Please check with them before planning to attend.

Friday 12th April, 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society, Jubilee Hall, 2, Parsonage Lane / Junction Chaseside, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. Fieldwork of the Society/Preceded by the AGM. Talk by Dr. Martin Dearne. Please visit www.enfarchsoc.org for further details. Non-members £1.50 at door. Refreshments.

Tuesday 16th April, 2.00-3.00 pm. Eclectic Tours. Headstone Manor Museum, The Granary, Pinner View, North Harrow, HA2 6PX. 100 Years of Proscenium Theatre. Talk by Mark Sutherland. Covers 100 years of history of theatre including highlights from the exhibition on at the museum. £2.50. Please book on www.headstonemanor.org/events/tuesday-talk.

Friday 19th April, 7.00 pm. COLAS, St Olave’s Church, Hart Street, London. EC3R 7NB. Talk also on Zoom. Who was Frederick? And Other Stories. Excavations at Frederick’s Place in the City. Results from a multi-phase site on land belonging to the Mercers’ Company – talk by Alison Telfer (MOLA). Please book via Eventbrite. Visit www.colas.org.uk. HADAS may send out the link details to its members.

Friday 10th May, 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society. Jubilee Hall, address as above. Roman and Bronze Age Finds in Walthamstow. Talk by Shane Maher (P.C.A), Website details above. Visitors £1.50.

Monday 13th May, 7.30 pm. Barnet Museum and Local History Society. (Please note later time). St John the Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, Corner High Street, Wood Street, Barnet EN5 4BW. The De Haviland Air Museum. Talk by Chris Levitt. Please visit www.barnetmuseum.co.uk for details.

Tuesday 14th May, 6.30 pm. LAMAS joint with Prehistoric Society – Talk on Zoom. Paleo-London – Thinking about the Ice Age Archaeology and Environments of the Capital. By Dr. Matt Pope. Details on Eventbrite. Booking essential on www.lamas.org.uk/lectures.html. Non-members. £2.50.

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Wednesday 15th May, 6.00 pm – 7.30 pm. This year’s UCL Institute of Archaeology Gordon Childe Lecture, to be given by Richard Bradley (Emeritus Professor, University of Reading) Hidden valuables: hidden variables. Hoards and other deposits from Mesolithic to modern times. This in-person event is ticketed, with pre-booking essential. Use the link below. https://www.ucl.ac.uk/archaeology/events/2024/may/ucl-institute-archaeology-gordon-childe-lecture-2024.

,Wednesday 15th May, 7.30 pm. Willesden Local History Society., St Mary’s Church Hall, Bottom of Neasden Lane (Around corner from Magistrates Court), NW10 2DZ. The Mercenary River. Talk by Nick Higham on The story of London’s water supply through the centuries. Please visit www.willesden-local-history.co.uk for further details.

Friday 17th May, 7.30 pm. Wembley History Society. St Andrew’s Church Hall (behind St. Andrew’s new church) Church Lane, Kingsbury, NW9 8RZ. The Story Behind the Song. Talk by Terry Lomas and Alan Richardson. Give an evening’s entertainment and discover the origins of some old familiar songs. Visitors £3. Refreshments in the interval.

Wednesday 22nd May, 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society. North Middlesex Golf Club, the Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, London. N20 0NL. House of Commons – ‘Stage Sets – Props – Symbols’. Preceded by AGM. Talk by Barry Hall. Please visit www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk. Non-members. £2. Bar Available.

Thursday 23rd May, 8.00 pm. Heath and Hampstead Society. Rosslyn Hill Chapel, 3, Pilgrims Place, London. NW3 1NG. Hampstead Historical Treasures in the Collections of Camden Studies. Local Archives Centre. 2nd Hunter Davies Lecture given by Tudor Allen (Archives Manager). Tickets available for non-members via Eventbrite for £15. Also on Zoom. E-mail info@heathandhampstead.org.uk for link.

****************************************************************************************************With many thanks to this month’s other contributors: Eric Morgan; Jim Nelhams, Andy Simpson. Stewart Wild.

****************************************************************************************************

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Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350)
e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Tresurer Roger Chapman, 50, Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP (07855 304488)
e-mail: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec. Jim Nelhams, 61, Potters Road Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8449 7076)
e-mail: membership@hadas.org.uk

Website at: www.hadas.org.uk – join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

12

Newsletter 636 – March 2024

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 636 March 2024 Edited by Deirdre Barrie

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

Lectures are normally face-to-face, though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE, 7.45 for 8pm.

Buses 143, 125, 326 and 460 pass close by, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 also passes close to Finchley Central Station.

Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after the talk.

Tuesday 12th March 2024 – Robin Densem (HADAS) The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest AD9:
The massacre of a Roman Army.

Tuesday 9th April 2024 – Ian Jones, (Chairman of Enfield Archaeological Society) Traders,
Bargees, Ferryman and a Seagull: Life and Work in Roman Pisa


Tuesday 14th May 2024 – Owen Humphreys (Finds Specialist at the Museum of London
Archaeology): London’s Roman Tools.

Tuesday 11th June 2024 – HADAS Annual General Meeting. A talk by Jacqui Pearce: Clay
Pipes.

Tuesday September 12th 2024 – Wendy Morrison (Chilterns Heritage & Archaeology Partnership
(CHAP), Beacon of the Past Hillforts Project.


The Annual Dorothy Newbury Memorial Lecture
Tuesday February 13th 2024 – Jacqui Pearce: “A Life in Sherds”

Jim Nelhams gave a brief introduction about the life of Dorothy Newbury, who played such a lively and productive part in HADAS for so many years, and who was awarded an MBE for services to HADAS and the community.

In her talk, Jacqui Pearce looked back over half a century of developments in the world of ceramic studies in London, focusing particularly on fabric identification, the medieval and later pottery-type Series, studies of excavated kiln sites, archaeological biography as seen in major household clearance assemblages, clay pipe studies and the importance of professional and non-professional archaeologists working together, especially through HADAS evening classes over several years

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Her interest in history began very early, when as a child she saw illustrations of prehistoric life by the Czech artist Zdenek Burian. Later she read novels about the Romans by Rosemary Sutcliffe and those about Vikings by Henry Treece.

In 1977 she joined the Museum of London’s Department of Urban Archaeology and has served as Joint Editor of Medieval Ceramics as well as Post Medieval Archaeology. She has published widely and is now a Senior Ceramics Specialist with MOLA. In 2017 she was elected President of the Society for Post Medieval Archaeology.

January Afternoon Tea Jim Nelhams

There being no lecture in January, thirty people, HADAS members and guests, assembled at Avenue House on Sunday 21st January for afternoon tea. Of those, twenty-one had been on our five-day coach trips, which sadly ended after our stay at Aberavon in 2019, so quite a re-union. So nice to meet up with some that we had not seen for some time, especially Micky Watkins, Kevin McSharry and Andrew Selkirk and his wife, Wendy.

A tasty finger-buffet plus tea/coffee was provided by the friendly Avenue House staff, supplemented by delicious cakes baked by our chairman’s wife. In between the chatting, there were two table quizzes compiled by Jim Nelhams to test knowledge and memory.

Many appreciative comments were received in the post and by email, including suggestions that we should organise a similar event in the summer.

HADAS afternoon tea (photo Andrew Selkirk)

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WELSH HARP OPEN DAY VISIT Andy Simpson

On Saturday 3 February 2024 I was able to attend the special Welsh Harp open day, along with friend Neil Weston, whom some readers know. As mentioned in my article in the February newsletter, this was in conjunction with the total draining of the 50 hectares of open water at the Welsh Harp reservoir (reduced from its original 79 hectares over the past 90 years or so by filling in and silting up) necessitated by repairs by the Canal and River Trust to the chains and rods that operate the two automatic sluice gates.

General view of dam, valve house and drained area of reservoir.

The weather was breezy but kind and there was an excellent turn out with over 600 visitors; We were divided into tightly timed groups and escorted along the top of the 600m/1,968ft long dam, which holds back a million cubic metres of water, and is 9.3m/30ft tall, to get views of the tower and outlet to the River Brent and the feeder to the Regents Canal at Paddington via Neasden and Stonebridge at the Wembley end of the site.

We saw workers retrieving fish – including a huge carp – to be rehomed elsewhere, before the reservoir is restocked with native fish species after refilling, probably in March 2024. There were supporting stalls, film shows, and information displays and plenty of helpful Canal and River Trust Staff and volunteers were on hand to help, along with the essential portaloos and a coffee stall!
Our guide mentioned that the Brent side of the dam is covered in grass with no shrubs permitted. This is because if a patch of grass gets extra verdant it may indicate a water leak!

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View beyond sluice gates of outlet to River Brent, with the spire of the ‘new’ Kingsbury Church just visible on the right. Note extra barriers inserted to catch floating rubbish.

************************************************************************************************

Rita Peters, who was a long standing HADAS member, died on 1st December 2023, aged 95. She lived in Hendon Lane, Finchley, but grew up in Kent. She used to go on the summer outings and was a bit of a character. She was also a member of the North London University of the Third Age.

When working, she was an astute business woman who ran a successful ladies’ wear shop in Oxford Street. In retirement, she found time for her interest in art, architecture and archaeology. One of her favourite places was Dulwich Picture Gallery, which she would visit with her art history friends, as well as attending lectures there. In architecture she discovered the U3A Shape of London group, led by a retired architect, giving fascinating talks and taking members on study tours (similar to HADAS Long Weekends). She was Jewish, but not observant, but was fully alert to her traditions and history.

************************************************************************************************

Current exhibitions in London Stewart Wild

There are two fine exhibitions on at the moment in London that may be of interest to HADAS members.

Legion: Life in the Roman Army, British Museum
Ground Floor Room 30, February 1 to June 23, 2024; 10:00 to 17:00hrs daily (Fridays to 20:30hrs)
www.britishmuseum.org/exhibitions/legion-life-roman-army

This look-at-life in the world’s pre-eminent fighting force 2,000 years ago is very illuminating. The Roman Empire spanned over a million square miles at its height, held together by military might.
Where did recruits come from? What about citizenship? How big was your unit? How comfortable was your uniform; how effective were your weapons? There’s lots to learn about the Roman invasion and occupation of England. Were the troops paid? Could their families join them in the fort? Pay,

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discipline, health, rules and regulations, entertainment, retirement are all featured. This wide-ranging exhibition is well worth the entrance fee at £22 Monday to Friday (£24 Saturday/Sunday).
Over-60s £11 after 12:00 on Mondays. (Need to book online or call box office on 020 7323 8181).
Members free; accompanied under-16s free (booking required).

Spies, Lies and Deception, Imperial War Museum,
Fifth floor, September 29, 2023 to April 14, 2024; 10:00 to18:00hrs daily. Entrance free.
www.iwm.org.uk/events/spies-lies-and-deception.

Covering principally World War II and the Cold War, and also with items from the Iraq war, this fascinating collection of disguised equipment, gadgets and personal histories of secret agents covers a number of inter-connected rooms on the fifth floor. Lighting is not always as good as it might be, and I found my torch useful. The displays include military intelligence, deception and camouflage in warfare (even docks and airfields were disguised to mislead bombers), secret listening posts, operation Mincemeat, SOE and MI5. See actual clothing and weapons used by spies, watch video presentations and interviews, and learn of the efforts to counter modern terrorism. But it’s clear that however much we rely on modern technology, you can’t beat the basic skills.

HAYES COTTAGE DIG – Site Code HAY23 Janet Mortimer

On 17th October 2023 Roger Chapman and I carried out a mini dig in the front garden of No. 3 Hayes Cottages, East Finchley at the kind invitation of Sue Barker. The cottage dates back to 1813. We know from research prior to a previous dig in East Finchley that the area was the site of a large pig market founded in the late 17th century and the cottage was adjacent to a drove way.

As there were only the two of us and we only had one day to do it, instead of following the rules of a major dig, we went according to the Time Team Big Dig instructions. We measured out a square metre area and dug in ten-centimetre increments. We had intended to go down to a depth of one metre, but due to time constraints and the ever-growing spoil heap that was threatening to envelop Sue’s lovely garden, we managed around half of this. However, we did accumulate a wealth of finds in this small area. The finds were bagged and sent to Avenue House for processing by the Sunday morning team.

First the finds were washed, then recorded on bulk finds sheets. They were then formally recorded, identified and dated before being marked with the site code and context number. The best finds were: –

1. A 303 calibre rifle bullet, which was standard British army issue, possibly from the Home Guard during World War 2

2. An almost intact glass stopper from a sauce bottle.

3. A pottery base sherd with a partial maker’s mark from John Meir & Son, which would have been produced between 1837 – 1897.

4. Part of a clay pipe bowl and stem with a maker’s mark S – L, which was dated between 1780 and 1820.

Other finds were:

Clay pipes – small pieces of bowl and stem, most of which were difficult to date but some were identified as dating back to 1700-1770.

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Glass – Pieces of window glass, milk bottle, Codd bottle (dated 1870-1950), tumbler and green glass medicine bottles.

Pottery – There was a good selection of post med pottery (1580-1900), including yellowware, stoneware, refined whiteware, transfer printed ware, English porcelain (the hand of a figurine), Staffordshire slipware and the oldest was the Frechen stoneware dating from 1550 to 1700.
Ceramic building material – grey slate, brick, glazed tile, mortar, concrete, roof tile (including peg tile) and pantile with hole.

Miscellaneous – There was also coal and clinker, probably from a domestic fireplace, a small amount of animal bone, some corroded iron nails, burnt flint and a few shells, identified as whelk and winkle.

As this was a domestic garden which has obviously been dug many times over the years, and possibly had material imported into it over the last two centuries, we cannot be sure of the context of the finds, but it was nevertheless an interesting and productive dig. The records will be added to the HADAS archive, and the finds will be returned to Sue.

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ROMAN FUNERARY BED DISCOVERED AT HOLBORN Deirdre Barrie

Ongoing excavations by MOLA at a Holborn Viaduct site have uncovered the first complete wooden Roman funerary bed to be discovered in Britain. The bed was dismantled before being put in the grave but may have carried the deceased from his funeral. It is suggested that the site was used as a cemetery during the Roman period AD43-410. The grave would as customary have been next to a Roman road, in this case Watling Street. Other finds include high status jewellery and a lamp decorated with a gladiator.

Excavations at Holborn Viaduct reveal complete Roman funerary bed | MOLA

Other Societies’ Events Eric Morgan

Note: Not all Societies or organisations have returned to pre-Covid conditions. Please check with them before planning to attend.

Sunday 7th April, 10.30 am – 5 pm. Avenue House Spring Fair. Finchley Women’s Institute present their first fair. Over 40 stalls, offering an exciting variety of gifts and treats created by local artisans at affordable prices. Free admission. https://www.stephenshouseandgardens.com/

Monday 8th April, 3 pm. Barnet Museum and Local History Society. St. John The Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, corner High Street/Wood Street, Barnet, EN5 4BW. Swinging London – An Illustrated Timeline of London in the 60’s. Talk by Nick Dobson. Please visit www.barnetmuseum.co.uk for details.

Tuesday 9th April, 6.30 pm. L.A.M.A.S. Talk on Zoom. Syon Abbey Revisited: Reconstructing Late Medieval England’s Wealthiest Nunnery. By Bob Cowie. Details on Eventbrite. Booking is essential on www.lamas.org.uk/lectures.html.

Wednesday 10th April, 8 pm. Hornsey Historical Society. A Devilish Kind of Courage: Anarchists, Aliens and The Siege of Sidney Street. Talk by Andrew Whitehead. Venue to be arranged. Also on Zoom. Please visit https://hornseyhistorical.org.uk/events/ for link.

Sunday 14th April, Avenue House, Private World of Spike Milligan. Opportunity to take a look at Spike’s unseen archive, guided by his daughter Jane Milligan. Small groups.

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Thursday 18th April, 8 pm. Historical Association – Hampstead and North West London Branch. Fellowship House, 136A, Willifield Way, London, NW11 6YD. (off Finchley Road, Temple Fortune). Justinian. Talk by Dr. Eric Bacton (F.H.A). Hopefully, also on Zoom. Please email Dr. Dudley Miles (HADAS member) on dudleyramiles@googlemail.com or telephone 07469 754075 for details of link and how to pay (There may be a voluntary charge of £5). Refreshments to be available afterwards.

Wednesday 24th April, 6 pm. Gresham College. Talk on Zoom. The Western Magical Tradition. By Ronald Hutton. Ticket required. Register at https://www.gresham.ac.uk/whats-on/western-magic. Free. A survey of learned ceremonial magic in Europe throughout history and demonstrates that both of the customary claims made for it by practitioners since the Middle Ages are actually correct and that there is a continuous tradition of it and that it is ultimately derived from Ancient Egypt.

Wednesday 24th April, 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society. North Middlesex Golf Club, the Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, London N20 0NL. Robert Paul Films. Talk by Ian Christie. www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk. Non-members £2. Bar will be available.

Thursday 25th April, 7.30 pm. Finchley Society. Drawing Room, Avenue (Stephen’s) House, 17 East End Road, London N3 3QE. The Finchley Society Archives. Talk by Alison Sharpe (Society Archivist). For further details please visit www.finchleysociety.org.uk. Non-members £2 at the door. Refreshments available in the interval.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
With many thanks to this month’s other contributors: Eric Morgan; Jim Nelhams, Andrew Selkirk, Andy Simpson, Stewart Wild and Janet Mortimer.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350)
e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50, Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP (07855 304488)
e-mail; treasure@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec. Jim Nelhams, 61, Potters Road Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8449 7076)
e-mail; membership@hadas.org.uk

Website at: www.hadas.org.uk – join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.

8

Newsletter 635 – February 2024

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 635 February 2024 Edited by Andy Simpson

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

Tuesday 13th February 2024: The Dorothy Newbury Memorial Lecture

A life in sherds

In this talk, HADAS President Jacqui Pearce looks back over half a century of developments in the world of ceramic studies in London, focusing particularly on fabric identification, the medieval and later pottery type-series, studies of excavated kiln sites, archaeological biography as seen in major household clearance assemblages, clay pipe studies and the importance of professional and non-professional archaeologists working together, especially through HADAS evening classes over several years.

Tuesday, 12th March 2024: ‘The Battle of Teutoburg Forest AD9; The Massacre of a Roman Army’

A Talk by Robin Densem. Newsletter readers will recall Robin’s excellent article on the battle- and the resultant loss of three legions- in NL631, October 2023.

Tuesday, 9 April 2024: ‘Traders, Bargees, Ferrymen and a Seagull; Life and Work in Roman Pisa

A talk by Ian Jones, Chairman, Enfield Archaeological Society.

Tuesday, 14 May 2024: ‘London’s Roman Tools

A talk by Owen Humphries

Tuesday, 11 June 2024

Annual General Meeting, followed by a lecture by Jacqui Pearce: ‘Clay Pipes

Lectures held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE. 7.45 for 8pm.

Buses 82, 125, 143, 326, 382, and 460 pass close by, and it is a five-ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line where the Super Loop SL10 express bus from North Finchley to Harrow also stops.

Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after each talk.

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Post-Excavation Work ANDY SIMPSON

Work on identifying and dating the considerable quantity of finds from the 17th October 2023 one day back garden trial excavation in East Finchley organised by Roger Chapman and undertaken by him and Janet Mortimer continues at Avenue House. The official site code HAY23 has been obtained by Bill Bass.

Peter Nicholson, Melvyn Dresner and Janet Mortimer using a marine mollusc id chart to categorise the Dog Whelk and Winkle shells found at the East Finchley Dig.

The Sunday team undertaking this work meet most Sundays,10.30 am – 1pm (ish) and visitors are welcome.

The next big Sunday project is likely to be the sorting and reboxing of the sizable ‘West Heath 1 (1970s) and 2’ (1980s) collection of flint finds and archive, long worked on and stored by Myfanwy Stewart, and now nearing publication.

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Veterans of the long-running Jacqui Pearce post-excavation techniques evening classes at Avenue House will recognise these recording forms – clockwise from left Bulk Finds sheet, glass recording sheet, Ceramic Building materials, and clay pipes.

The pottery recording sheets and the small finds record sheet- admittedly with just four small finds on it, including one clay pipe bowl with maker’s mark on the spur, and an empty brass .303 calibre rifle cartridge! – have also been completed. Unusually, there were no coins to record – not even the usual 2p! The finds have now been marked up with site code and context number, just leaving the small matter of the final report to produce….

Advance Notice

Saturday 23rd March, 11 am. – 5.30 pm. L.A.M.A.S Archaeology Conference, Museum of London, Docklands, West India Quary, off Hertsmere Road, London E14 4AL., Tickets available via Eventbrite. Details and how to book on L.A.M.A.S. website. Please visit www.lamas.org.uk 11 am – 1 pm. Morning session – Recent Works; 2 – 5 pm. Afternoon session – The Department of Urban Archaeology (50th Anniversay) and the Department of Greater London Archaeology (40th Anniversary) including 4.30 pm. Top Ceramics from 50 years of Excavation in London. Talk by Jacqui Pearce (HADAS President) 5 pm. The Rose Theatre and the DGLA. Talk by Harvey Sheldon (Former HADAS President).

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DRAINING THE WELSH HARP ANDY SIMPSON

Newsletter readers may remember that back in January/February 2021 the Welsh Harp (Brent) Reservoir, originally constructed 1834-35 to supply water for the Grand Union Canal, was temporarily partly drained to permit inspection of the main dam head wall and associated structures at the Wembley end of the reservoir, revealing the original course of the Silkstream. This was reported in my article ‘Welsh Harp Water Level lowered’ in NL600, March 2021.

Between mid-December 2023 and February2024 the whole reservoir was completely drained to permit essential statutory improvement works by the Canal and River Trust (formerly British Waterways) who manage the reservoir; the land around it is owned by the London boroughs of Barnet and Brent. This was to deal with issues identified during the 2021 inspection. Supported by funds from the Peoples’s Postcode Lottery, work will include repairs to the chains and rods that operate the reservoir’s sluices controlling the water levels in the reservoir and repainting of the Valve House Tower that houses the sluice mechanisms. A major removal of accumulated rubbish and litter is also planned along with wildlife habitat improvements in this 170-acre site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)- over 200 bags of litter being removed by volunteers on 13 January alone; a Victorian knife and ‘old gun’ were also recovered.

Dated December 2023, a terrific view of the drained area with old course of Silkstream very evident leading to Cool Oak Lane bridge in the centre of the picture, Werst Hedon playing fields and allotments in the centre background and the Edgware Road off to the right- taken by local resident Eva Mensah and reproduced with her kind permission.

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View south from Cool Oak Lane bridge showing original course of the Silkstream. December 2023

An open day was due to be held at the Welsh Harp on 3 February 2024 to give visitors a chance to see ‘what lies beneath the surface’ and visit the sluice gates and see the drained reservoir bed up close. When full, the reservoir contains over one million cubic metres of water – enough to fill 400 Olympic swimming pools.

Also related are developing plans for work on the West Hendon playing Fields. Barnet Council wants to ‘transform West Hendon Playing Fields into an exciting new park …The new park proposals will include new play areas, recreational spaces, sports facilities, improved infrastructure, and expanded leisure amenities’ Although supposedly intended to enhance local wildlife and biodiversity, whilst inclusively serving the ever increasing population ofWest Hendon/Edgware Road tower blocks with opportunities for physical activity and recreation, it is to be hoped that this does not mean the destruction of the pleasingly semi-wild nature of the area. The most recent public consultation on these plans, originally propped in a 2019 Master plan, closed in December 2023. The following link to an earlier consultation (also now closed) includes a useful map of the area and the proposed changes;

WEMBLEY MATTERS: Respond to Barnet’s plans for West Hendon Playing fields at consultation meeting tomorrow. It is expected that the reservoir will be refilled with water in April 2024.

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COLINDALE STATION REBUILDING ANDY SIMPSON

Helped by Government Levelling Up funding, work to redevelop the Northern Line Edgware Branch’s Colindale station site by Transport for London begins Spring 2024. Before it all changes. I thought I had better record the existing structures, whose demolition and replacement by new structures will in part necessitate closure of the station and the line from Golders Green to Edgware from 2 to 11 April 2024 and similar weekend closures for much of June, followed by a longer closure period in the summer and autumn of 2024 to be announced.

The current entrance hall, opened in December 1962, was originally built as part of a large office development, since demolished. This replaced a temporary structure erected in 1960 in place of the original entrance building, opened on Monday, 18 August 1924 as part of the extension of the then London Electric Railway’s line over the three miles from Hendon Central to Edgware via Colindale and Burnt Oak; work on this had begun in November 1922. This temporary booking hall stood on the plot of land occupied from 1964 by the 28-space car park which has just closed as part of the redevelopment.

The Portland stone Doric colonnade portico frontage and booking hall of the original Georgian style red brick building of 1924, which had been designed by Underground Group architect S.A. Heaps, was completely destroyed by two direct hits by German high explosive bombs including a landmine on the night of 25th September 1940 during the London Blitz, killing 13 people including four RAF Hendon airmen in a train that was entering the station at the time of one explosion; many other people were injured, the adjacent Colindale hospital also being hit. King George VI and Queen Mary visited the following day to inspect the damage, accompanied by the Mayor of Hendon. An initial wooden temporary replacement structure was then erected.

A memorial plaque to the civilians and London Transport staff was unveiled on the station concourse on 25th September 2012, the anniversary of the raid.

The current building will be replaced by a large new entrance hall to be flanked by large multi-story blocks of flats and, for the first time, a lift giving step-free access from the street to platform level. The new structure will have a hybrid timber and steel roof structure, the laminated timber being intended to reference early aeronautical engineering in the area with personalities such as Claude Grahame White.

As well as the upgrades to the tube station, a new residential and commercial development will be built on the old ticket hall and car park site comprising 313 new homes, half of which should be ‘affordable’. For images of the new development see

Colindale and Leyton tube stations set for £43.1 million step-free upgrades (ianvisits.co.uk)

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Some of the historical details above, and much else besides on our local underground lines, can be found online in archive editions of the London Underground Railway Society’s monthly journal:

https://www.lurs.org.uk/historicalarchive.htm

View of the almost finished office block and tube station entrance hall, circa 1962. Original postcard from the editor’s collection, looking east along Colindale Avenue towards what was then still the main gate of RAF Hendon. Although closed to powered flying in November 1957, at this time the airfield was still used for weekend gliding by Air Training Corps cadets.

During the summer of 2011 this office block – ‘Colindale Station House’ – was demolished to make way for new residential developments on the site.

Your editor has fond memories of the Hannants aviation/military book and model shop on the ground floor back in the 1990s, latterly moved to a nearby industrial estate and replaced by a supermarket and off-licence until closure for demolition.

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Colindale Station entrance 1970s-photographer unknown.
December 2023 view of the current Colindale Station entrance building

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December 2023 view of the interior of the current entrance building.

WHEN IS A CASTLE NOT A CASTLE? JANET MORTIMER

When we talk of castles, we tend to think of them either as magnificent surviving structures like Edinburgh Castle or glorious ruins like Kenilworth Castle. However, Oakham Castle in the county town of Rutland is a complete exception. There is a small amount of the original castle walls which you could easily walk past without noticing and part of the motte survives – but it has to be signposted so you know what it is. However what does survive is the magnificent Great Hall which was built between 1180 and 1190 and is acknowledged as one of the finest examples of domestic Norman architecture in the country.

Inside the Great Hall is a surprise as the place is adorned from floor to ceiling with horseshoes. It has become a custom for visiting dignitaries to commission a decorative horseshoe commemorating their visit, and there are many from the Royal family, including the late Queen and Prince Philip and even Queen Victoria when she was still Duchess of Kent.

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There are conflicting theories about how the horseshoe tradition started but the oldest one dates from 1470. There is even one from Time Team when they dug around the Castle in 2012.

In my view, the best thing about this Castle is that it is still very much at the heart of the community. Not only is it a visitor attraction which you can visit for free most days, but it is also used for weddings, gatherings and parties. And to retain its status as one one of the country’s longest continually used courts, a Crown Court session is held there once every two years. Presumably these days people are not sentenced to a stint in the stocks, which still exist outside the castle in the Buttercross – a type of market cross dating back to the 17th century.

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Other Societies’ Events Eric Morgan

As always, please check with the societies – for example via their websites – before planning to attend in case of any late changes, since not all societies and organisations have returned to pre-covid conditions.

Monday 12th February, 3 pm. Barnet Museum and Local History Society, St. John the Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, Corner High Street/Wood Street, Barnet, EN5 4BW. Historic Hendon. Talk by Rhiannon Watkinson. Please visit www.barnetmuseum.co.uk for details.

Tuesday 13th February, 6 pm. L.A.M.A.S. Lecture Theatre, G6, Institute of Archaeology, U.C.L, 31-34 Gordon Square, WC1H 0PY. AGM and Presidential Address given by Professor Vanessa Harding on Mapping Medieval London. Also on Zoom. Details on Eventbrite. Booking essential. Please visit Lectures (lamas.org.uk).

Wednesday 14th February, 2.30 pm. Mill Hill Historical Society. Trinity Church, 100 The Broadway, NW7 3TB. Please note there is a change to the talk shown in the January Newsletter. It is now a talk on Ayrton House, The Ridgeway – by Honor Barrett, with a brief history of the National Institute for Medical Research Centre, where this now stands. Please visit www.millhill-hs.org.uk.

Friday 16th February, 7 pm. C.O.L.A.S. Talk on Zoom. How London Got Its Walls. Some Stories of Third Century Resurrection Gleaned from Archaeological Discovery – by Dominic Perring (I.o.A). Preceded by a A.G.M. Please book via Eventbrite. Visit City of London Archaeological Society (colas.org.uk).

Friday 16th February, 7.30 pm. Wembley History Society. St. Andrew’s Church Hall (behind St. Andrew’s new church) Church Lane, Kingsbury. NW9 8RZ. Decolinising Wembley. Talk by Nabil Al-Kianai. Examines the legacy of the 1924 Wembley Exhibition. The echoes of Empire that still resound. Visitors £3. Refreshments available afterwards.

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Tuesday 20th February, 2-3 pm. Eclectic Tours. Headstone Manor Museum, Pinner View, North Harrow, HA2 6PX. What was The London Aerodrome? Talk by Lisa Lu. Explains more about the London Aerodrome before it became RAF Hendon, cost £2.50. Please book on Tuesday Talk: Tuesday Talk: What was the London Aerodrome? – Headstone Manor Museum.

Also, Saturday 24th February, 1-3pm. Discovering Colindale and Its Role in Early Aviation. Colindale (or Hendon as it was known back then) was synonymous with flying. Learn about early Aviation and other factories and important institutions in the area. This is a tour and costs £15. For more information and to book got to WALKS & TALKS (Eclectic Tours – Walking Tours – London, England (eclectic-tours.com)).

Saturday 24th February, 9.30 am – 5 pm. Current Archaeology Live 2024. U.C.L Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way (off Russell Square), London WC1H 0AL. Wide range of expert speakers sharing latest Archaeological finds and research. Also Archaeology Fair and Photography competition from Current World Archaeology. Also the Current Archaeology awards will be announced at 5 pm. Tickets on sale at standard price of £60. To book please visit Current Archaeology Live! 2024 – Current Archaeology or call 0208 819 5580. The keynote speech will be Behind The Scenes of The Team – 30 Years in the Media Limelight given by Dr John Gater. The Fair has lots of stalls with travel companies, booksellers and other Archaeological organisations.

Thanks to our other contributors this month; Eric Morgan; Janet Mortimer.

Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman: Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS
(020 8440 4350) e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary: Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer: Roger Chapman 50 Summerlee Ave, London N” 9QP
(07855 304488) e-mail: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec.: Jim Nelhams 61, Potters Road Barnet EN5 5HS
(020 8449 7076) e-mail: membership@hadas.org.uk

Website at: www.hadas.org.uk

Join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.

12

Newsletter 634 – January 2024

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 634 JANUARY 2024 Edited by Jim Nelhams

Happy New Year to all our readers.

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming lectures and events

Lectures are normally face-to-face though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE. 7.45 for 8pm. Tea/coffee available for purchase after each talk.

Buses 143, 125, 326 and 460 pass close by, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 also passes close to Finchley Central Station.

Sunday 21st January 2024 – Afternoon Tea at Avenue House, 2:30 – 5:30pm

The size of the room limits us to 30 people and we are approaching that number. If you have not registered and wish to come, please phone Jim Nelhams on 020 8449 7076 or email membership@hadas.org.uk.

Tuesday February 13th 2024: The Dorothy Newbury Memorial Lecture

A life in sherds

In this talk, Jacqui Pearce looks back over half a century of developments in the world of ceramic studies in London, focusing particularly on fabric identification, the medieval and later pottery type-series, studies of excavated kiln sites, archaeological biography as seen in major household clearance assemblages, clay pipe studies and the importance of professional and non-professional archaeologists working together, especially through HADAS evening classes over several years.

Tuesday March 12th 2024

Robin Densem – ‘The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest AD9: The massacre of a Roman army’

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Tuesday April 9th 2024

Ian Jones – ‘Traders, Bargees, Ferrymen and a Seagull; Life and Work in Roman Pisa’

Tuesday 14th May 2024 – to be advised

Tuesday 11th June 2024 – Annual General Meeting + lecture

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HADAS wins Quiz Jim Nelhams

The Finchley Society has been running a quiz evening at Avenue House each November. Society members Peter Pickering and Stewart Wild were joined by Peter’s son Martin and Jo & Jim Nelhams to enter a HADAS team. Tables were strictly limited to 6 people, though our team started with only four since Stewart had been held up by train problems returning from Kingston upon Thames. All other tables had the full complement. Sue Loveday and Eric Morgan were also in another team.

The quiz started with a music round, always a bad subject for HADAS, but Martin proved our saviour and after that round, surprisingly we were in the lead, a position we never lost.At the end of the evening HADAS triumphed with a lead of four and a half points.

Ancient women were better hunters than men Stewart Wild

When it comes to hunting, the prehistoric fairer sex has the upper hand, according to two studies. Women have a metabolism better suited to endurance, according to Dr Cara Obocock, director of the Human Energetics Laboratory at the University of Notre Dame, Indiana, USA.
Oestrogen and adiponectin are both present in women at higher levels and provide physical advantages over men. Women’s wider hips, a physiological study found, are also an advantage. A second study examined archaeological evidence of bones and found that women often suffered war wounds associated with hunting.

The studies were published in American Anthropologist.
SOURCE: The Daily Telegraph, 28 November 2023, item edited by Stewart Wild

Florence Nightingale Museum Jim Nelhams

A museum slightly off the beaten track, this is located at 2 Lambeth Palace Road, SE1 7EW at St Thomas Hospital. It is just to the west of the south side of Westminster Bridge, opposite the Houses of Parliament.

Normal opening hours are 10am to 5pm, Wednesday to Sunday. Adult admission costs £12 and can be booked online. Nearest underground station is Westminster. Did you know Florence Nightingale was the first female member of the Royal Statistical Society? That she owned over 60 cats throughout her life and had a pet owl called Athena. Do you know why she was called Florence?

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Nightingale was the founder of modern nursing, was one of our greatest Victorians and a female icon in her own lifetime. She is still an inspiration to nurses around the globe.

Visit the museum to celebrate the life of this trailblazing woman; discover all about her affluent childhood, how she fought against her parents’ wishes to become a nurse, her work during the Crimean War and how she campaigned for better healthcare for ordinary people. See the actual lamp she carried which earned her the nickname The Lady with The Lamp, meet her pet owl and see her medicine chest.

Nightingale also played a significant part in the design of the rebuilt St Thomas Hospital.

You can still visit an exhibition demonstrating how Nightingale’s leadership and campaigning skills still inspire women today, ‘Nightingale in 200 Objects, People & Places’. And if you’re taking children to the museum, don’t forget to pick up a copy of our Family Trail. More information on florence-nightingale.co.uk.


Iron Age coin find adds king to British history Stewart Wild

A new king has been added to British history after a tiny coin found in a Hampshire field sold for more than £20,000 at auction. Dating from around 50 BC and smaller than a fingernail, the gold quarter stater coin is stamped with the name Esunertos, a previously unrecorded Iron Age ruler.

The find by hobbyist Lewis Fudge has been described by experts as “one of the outstanding discoveries of recent decades.” The coin was dug up by the construction worker in a farmer’s field in the Test Valley in March this year after he was given permission to use his metal detector.

Mr Fudge said: “I am over the moon. If it were not for people in the auction room, I would have jumped around. The collectors I spoke to are gobsmacked.”

The coin bears the ruler’s name and dates to the beginning of written language appearing in the British Isles.

SOURCE: The Daily Telegraph, 19 October 2023, item edited by Stewart Wild


Digging For Britain 2024 (Enfield Archaeology) Melvyn Dresner

The new series of Digging For Britain, featuring the 2023 summer dig on the site Elsyng Tudor Palace in Forty Hall, will be broadcast on BBC2 and will be available on BBC iPlayer beginning Tuesday 2nd January at 8pm. The episode featuring the EAS dig is slated for broadcast on January 9th at 8pm. The 2023 dig was an excellent year for Tudor archaeology, and EAS are very pleased to be able to share their discoveries with a wider than usual audience.

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During this year’s search for the inner gatehouse of Henry VIII’s palace, the dig discovered several new Tudor structures and, after filming ended, evidence for what EAS currently think may be a substantial cellar.

EAS will be back at Forty Hall in 2024 to continue the gatehouse hunt, and hopefully explore the hidden depths of Henry’s cellars!

(Melvyn also notes that he may not make the final edit, but you might spot his trowel – now there’s a challenge!)

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Dinosaur relic found in island castle grounds Stewart Wild

A dinosaur footprint spotted by a National Trust ranger out on a run could be from an iguanodon dating back up to 157 million years, experts believe.

Sophie Giles stumbled across the print as she jogged in the grounds of Brownsea Castle on Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour, Dorset. It was probably made when the area was covered in tropical forests and swamps and had become easier to see after it filled with water during a rain shower.

The National Trust believes the find is the rear footprint of an iguanodon – a bulky three-toed herbivore that grew up to 36ft long and lived between 93 and 157 million years ago.
Dr Martin Munt, curator of the Dinosaur Isle Museum in Sandown, Isle of Wight, said the print of the hind foot was “comparable to those found on Purbeck, where the stone would have originated.”

He added: “It is certainly what we call a tridactyl footprint, of the date we are talking about; it could have been made by an iguanodontian or related dinosaur.”

SOURCE: The Daily Telegraph, 16 November 2023, item redacted by Stewart Wild

Draining the Welsh Harp Jim Nelhams

The Welsh Harp is currently being drained by the Canal and River Trust so that repairs can be made to the infrastructure. At the same time, rubbish is being removed and the fish are being netted and rehoused at other Trust locations. On completion, fish will be re-introduced.

There is an open day on Saturday 3rd February from 10-3 but tickets are sold out. Maybe more will be made available. At least one HADAS member has successfully booked, so a report should appear in later newsletters. The date is just too late for the February issue.

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OTHER SOCIETIES’ EVENTS Eric Morgan

NOT ALL SOCIETIES OR ORGANISATIONS HAVE RETURNED TO PRE-COVID CONDITIONS. PLEASE CHECK WITH THEM BEFORE PLANNING TO ATTEND.

Wednesday 10th January, 8pm. Hornsey Historical Society. The Old School House, 136 Tottenham Lane (Corner of Rokesly Avenue). London. N8 7EL. London’s Squares and Gardens. Talk by Peter Mathers. Also on Zoom. Please note attendance in person is limited. Please visit www.hornseyhistorical.org.uk/events first and for link.

Friday 19th January, 7.30 pm. Wembley History Society. St. Andrew’s Church Hall (Behind St. Andrew’s new church) Church Lane, Kingsbury, London NW9 8RZ. Mercy Ships, Talk by Norbert Jannson on the work of the organisation bringing much needed Healthcare to sub-Saharan Africa. Visitors £3. Refreshments available in the interval.

Wednesday 24th January, 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society. North Middlesex Golf Club, The Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, N20 0NL. My Family History. Talk by Colin Barratt (Friern Barnet Local History Society). Please visit www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk and click on programme. Non-members £2. Bar to be available.

Thursday 1st February, 5-6pm. Society of Antiquaries. Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BE. Also on Zoom. Analysing Myth and Material –Charles 1st’s Knitted Waistcoat. Talk by Beatrice Behlen and Doctor Jane Malcolm-Davies. Lecture is free, but a donation is welcome. Details and bookings through the SAL website www.sal.org.uk/events.

Sunday 4th February, 10.30 am. Heath and Hampstead Society. Meet at Burgh House, New End Square, London. NW3 1LT. History of the Heath Ponds. Guided walk let by Marc Hutchinson (Chair). Lasts approx. 2 hours. Donation accepted of £5. Please contact Thomas Radice on 07941 528034 or email hhs.walks@gmail.com or visit www.heathandhampstead.org.uk.

Friday 9th February, 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society. Jubilee Hall, 2 Parsonage Lane, Junction Chase Side, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. The Southsea Coastal Defence Scheme. Future Proofing Against Sea-Level Rise. Talk by Holly Rodgers. Please visit www.enfarchsoc.org for further details. Non-members £1.50 at the door.

Wednesday 14th February, 2.30 pm. Mill Hill Historical Society. Trinity Church, 100 The Broadway, London. NW7 3TB. The Elegant Explorer, Fortnum and Masons and the Far Flung Traveller. Talk by Andrea Tanner. Please visit www.millhill-hs.org.uk.

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Wednesday 14th February, 6 pm. Gresham College. Talk on Zoom – Dragons – A History by Ronald Hutton. Ticket required. Register at www.gresham.ac.uk. Please see Dragons: A History | Gresham College. Free. Talk to answer the difference between Eastern and Western Dragons – if the Western attitude to Dragons has changed in the modern era and if Christianity gave rise to a different idea of what a Dragon should be.

Wednesday 14th February, 8 pm. Hornsey Historical Society. Venue and link same as Wednesday 10th January with same restrictions. Talk also on Zoom. Churchill and the Loss of Everest at the Foot of Crouch Hill. By Tom Barclay Matchett will explore the path that brought the future war leader to Crouch End and the woman (Elizabeth Ann Everest) who shaped the man.

Thursday 15h February, 8 pm. Historical Association – Hampstead and N.W. London Branch. Fellowship House, 136A Willifield Way, London NW11 6YD (off of Finchley Road, Temple Fortune) From Enslavement to Chivalry. The Conduct of War in the Middle Ages. Talk by Professor John Gillingham (L.S.E.). Hopefully, also on Zoom. Please email Gulse Koca (Chair) on kocagulse@gmail.com or telephone 07453 283090 for details of link and how to pay. (There may be a voluntary charge of £5). Refreshments will be available afterwards.

Wednesday 28th February, 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society. Venue as Wednesday 24th January. The First World War in The Air. Speaker to be arranged. Non-members £2. Website as before for details.

Thursday 29th February, 7.30 pm. Finchley Society. Drawing Room, Avenue (Stephens’) House, 18 East End Road, N3 3QE. The Skies Above Finchley- A Vertical Journey. Talk by Donald Lyven. For further details please visit www.finchleysociety.org.uk Non-members £2 at the door. Refreshments in the interval.

❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖❖
With thanks to the contributors: Melvyn Dresner, Eric Morgan, Jim Nelhams & Stewart Wild
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Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS
(020 8440 4350), email: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer 34 Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121), email: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50 Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP
(07855 304488), email: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec. Jim Nelhams, 61 Potters Road, Barnet, EN5 5HS
(020 8449 7076), email: membership@hadas.org.uk

Website: www.hadas.org.uk

8

Newsletter 633 – December 2023

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 633 December 2023 Edited by Don Cooper

After what is proving to be a difficult year with conflicts everywhere, we
would like to take this opportunity to wish all our readers a Merry Christmas
and Healthy, Happy, Prosperous and PEACEFUL 2024.

HADAS Diary -Forthcoming Lectures and Events

Without a lecture in December or January, we have arranged an afternoon tea to welcome the New Year and for you to meet up with other members. It would be lovely to see everybody and of course, friends and partners too.  Sunday, 21st January,2024.  2.30pm to 5.30pm. Avenue House, 17 East End Road, N3 3QE.   £20 per person includes Finger Buffet (and tea/coffee) – Good company, cash bar – Raffle – Quiz.  Booking details on separate sheet / attachment sent with newsletter.

Tuesday, 13th February 2024. TBA

March 12th March 2024 The Battle of Teutoburg Forest AD 9: The Massacre of a Roman
Army.  A Talk by Robin Densem

Tuesday, 9th April 2024 Traders, Bargees, Ferrymen and a Seagull; Life and Work in Roman Pisa.  A talk by Ian Jones, Chairman Enfield Archaeological Society

Tuesday, 14th May 2024 Roman London’s tools, a talk by Owen Humphreys. 

The Minoan Double Axe by David Willoughby

There are many unanswered questions about the Minoans who dominated the Aegean, from their bases in Crete in the early Bronze Age. This is in part due to the fact that the writings they have left us in their Linear A script remain undeciphered. Some burning questions are : What are their origins? What language did they speak? What were their religious beliefs and practices and what was the significance of the double axe symbol (Labrys) which is commonly associated with Minoan sites?

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Excavations commenced in 1934 on the Arkalochori cave (which had collapsed in antiquity). This cave is located on the western edge of the Minoa Pediada plain, west of the Lasithi plateau on Crete. It is believed to be a sacred cave associated with the Minoan Palace of Galatas (Rethemiotakis, 1999).

The excavations revealed hundreds of bronze double axes, twenty-five gold ones and seven silver ones. The axes included the second-millennium bronze ‘Arkalochori axe’ with its unusual undeciphered script showing some similarities to Linear A. Also discovered was a hoard of bronze swords and a small altar (Blegen, 1935). Pottery sherds in the cave enabled the deposits in the cave to be dated from the late third millennium BCE to around 1500 BCE (LM II). Similar bronze double axes have been found at the Diktian (Psychro) sacred cave among other gifts or offerings such as miniature vessels and figures of humans and animals (Preziosi & Hitchcock, 1999) and the finds in both caves indicate the axes were deposited as votive offerings. Bronze double axes have also been found in tombs (Evans, 1914).

Labrys made of gold in the Heraklion Museum

The double axe has been discovered in many Minoan contexts. It often appears as mason marks, for
example in palatial pillar crypts on the pillar itself. Bronze double axes have been found embedded in stalactites in caves and frescoes show double axes embedded in column capitals. It has been suggested that these pillar crypts may mimic sacred caves with the pillar being a baetyl (sacred stone) representing an aniconic cult statue (Preziosi & Hitchcock, 1999). Double axes appear on sealings (e.g. on a MMII B cretule sealing from Phaistos) and panels on the LMIII A Sarcophagus from Haghia Triada apparently depict burial ceremonies and with two double headed axes mounted on stepped bases between which is a container, into which women are pouring offerings (Preziosi & Hitchcock, 1999). Also depicted on the sarcophagus is a scene showing bull sacrifice.

The double axe features in several other Bronze Age cultures where it is often associated with the storm or thunder god e.g., the Hurrian god Teshup (adopted by the Hittites and Luwians as Tarhun) who is associated with the bull as a sacred animal https://www.britannica.com/topic/Tarhun.

In classical times the Greek god Zeus uses the double axe to invoke a storm (Nilsson, 1967) and the
Diktian cave was the centre of the worship of Zeus with a hymn to the god having been found in
excavations at Palakastro www.explorecrete.com/mythology/dictaean-zeus-hymn.html. Evidence in

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Linear A tablets may indicate that a ‘Diktaian master’ was a Minoan precursor to classical Diktaian Zeus (Valerio, 2007).

Plutarch states that the Lydian word for double axe was ‘labrys’ (Plutarch) and many (including Arthur Evans) have suggested that the word ‘Labyrinth’ means ‘place of the double axes’ (The Oxford Classical Dictionary, 2012) but this cannot be proved (Beekes).

The double axe appears to have had great significance to the Minoans and it can be postulated that perhaps that it and even the bull iconography (including the horns of consecration) are associated with an important deity in the Minoan religious pantheon, the storm god, who later became equated with Zeus. There is however, no proven iconography depicting the god himself to support this and indeed double axes are usually associated with female figures, perhaps representing priestesses.

Bibliography
Beekes, R.S.P. Greek Etymological dictionary, 819.
Blegen, E. P. (1935). News items from Athens. American Journal of Archaeology 39, 134.
Evans, A. (1914). The ‘Tomb of the Double Axes’ and Associated Group, and the Pillar Rooms and Ritual Vessels of the ‘Little Palace’ at Knossos. Archaeologia, 65, 1-94.
https://www.britannica.com/topic/Tarhun (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.britannica.com
Nilsson, M. (1967). Die Geschichte der griechischen Religion (Vol. I). Munich: Beck Verlag.
Plutarch. (n.d.). Greek Questions, 45, 2.302a.
Preziosi, D, & Hitchcock, L.A. (1999). Aegean Art and Architecture. Oxford University Press.
Rethemiotakis. (1999). To neo minoiko Anaktoroston Galata Pediados kai to ‘Iero Spilaio’ Arkalochoriou.
A. Karetsou, ed. Krites Thalassodromoi, 99-111.
The Oxford Classical Dictionary (4th ed.). (2012). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Valerio, M. (2007). ‘Diktaian Master’: A Minoan Predecessor of Diktaian Zeus. Kadmos – Zeitschrift für
vor- und frühgriechische Epigraphik, 3-14.
www.explorecrete.com/mythology/dictaean-zeus-hymn.html (n.d.). Retrieved from
www.explorecrete.com

Vikings in Greenland July 2023 by Don Cooper

In early July 2023 Liz and I visited Greenland on a cruise ship as part of a holiday that included Iceland and Greenland. What attracted us to the trip was to see the physical remains of the settlement of Greenland by the Vikings.

According to the Norse sagas Eric the Red byname of Erik Thorvasson was exiled from Iceland, possibly having been found guilty of manslaughter in circa AD 980. He sailed to Greenland, where he explored the coastline and claimed certain regions as his property. He then returned to Iceland to persuade people to join him in establishing a settlement in Greenland. The Icelandic sagas say that 25 ships left Iceland with him in AD 985, and that only 14 of them arrived safely in Greenland. Radiocarbon dating of the remains at the first settlement at what is now called Qassiarsuk have approximately confirmed this timeline, yielding a date of about AD 1000. There are five areas in South-West Greenland with known early Viking remains in and among more modern sheep farms. The areas contain well-preserved landscapes with ruins of farmsteads from the period AD 985-1450. These five settlements were acknowledged collectively as a World Heritage Site in 2017.

Qassiarsuk grew from about 500 to a maximum of 3000 settlers between c.AD 1000 and AD 1450. As Christianity spread through Europe, replacing the old gods, churches began to be built across the region.

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One such church was at Hvalsey built c. 1300 AD, the remains of which are still standing. See my photos below.

Figure 1 Church at Hvalsey, Greenland July 2023
Figure 2 Church at Hvalsey (interior)

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Figure 3 Old Farm building at Hvalsey
(This photo is from a handout provided by Narsarsuaq museum.)

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Figure 4 Photo from Narsarsuaq museum.

There is a continuing mystery as to why the settlement failed. There are many theories. In all likelihood it is a combination of them. The last document securely dated records the marriage of Sigrid Bjornsdottir and Thorstein Olafsson on Sunday 16th September 1408 in Hvalsey church. Is it relevant that Greenland came under Denmark in AD 1380 when the Norwegian kingdom came under the Danish crown? The settlement was completely abandoned by c:1450. The main theories are:

  1. Climate change – The exceptionally cold weather of the so called “Little Ice Age” made farming life unsustainable. The North Atlantic became more stormy and according to the website
    What really happened to Greenland’s vikings? | [Visit Greenland!] the last ship returned from Greenland to Norway in AD 1410.
  2. Plague – the Black Death devastated Norway with up to 60% of the population dying of it and
    although the plague didn’t reached Greenland, trade with Norway was seriously curtailed and the provision of bishops and priests to support the church in Greenland ceased as all the bishops and most of the priests in Norway died of the plague.
  3. Ivory from Walrus tusks: This theory is propounded by Tim Folger in the Smithsonian Magazine in
    March 2017 (https://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/why-greenland-vikingsvanished180962119/#:~:text=The%20Vikings%20established%20two%20outposts,north%2C%20called%26vanished180962119/#:~:0the%20Western%20Settlement.) The gist of the article is that the reason the Vikings settled in Greenland was not just farming, but harvesting walrus ivory, which was valuable, as this was before elephant ivory reached the European market and collapsed the price.
  4. Innuits – The Innuits arrived in Northern Greenland c: AD 1200 and gradually extended southward
    to the small Western Viking settlement. Did they fight with the Vikings or intermingle peacefully? The only reference according to the website, Greenland – The Official Tourism Site | Visit Greenland! is of a “clerical steward who visited the settlement around 1350 and wrote that the Inuit had taken over the entire Western settlement, but frustratingly did not elaborate on this.”

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It is clear that both parties shared the same resources, so the possibility of conflict exists. Whichever theory you support it still remains a mystery as to why the Vikings vanished from Greenland in the 1400s.

The Worshipful Company of Leather Sellers in Barnet by David Willoughby

A little while ago I had an article published in the HADAS newsletter that referenced a cast iron boundary marker at the bottom of Barnet Hill, near the site of the now demolished Old Red Lion pub. This marker is very worn but close examination reveals a coat of arms of two creatures supporting a shield. I postulated at the time that this might represent the royal coat of arms featuring a lion rampant and a unicorn rampant, with the shield surmounted by a helmet and a crest of a crown surmounted by a lion.

I conjectured that this marker might be associated with the improvement of the road from Whetstone to Barnet by the Whetstone and Highgate Turnpike Trust in 1823.

In a recent online forum this particular boundary marker was discussed and one of the participants was sure that the coat of arms represented that of the Worshipful Company of Leathersellers. Their coat of arms features a roebuck rampant and a ram rampant supporting a shield with a demi roebuck crest above the shield. The rational of thinking it was related to the Leathersellers is that they own a lot of historic freehold in Barnet, including the almshouses at Leathersellers Close and of Barnet Odeon (Everyman), the BP garage and possibly, still the freehold of the new houses by the grass verge where the marker is located and which are on the site of the Old Red Lion pub.

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This is a very credible and more likely explanation and looking closely at the coat of arms on the enhanced photograph, it does resemble that of the Leathersellers, in particular, the shape of the motto at the bottom. It is a shame though, that the boundary marker is too worn to be a hundred percent sure about the identification.

Other Societies’ Events by Eric Morgan

Not all societies / organisations have returned to pre-covid conditions. Please check before attending.

Tuesday 9th January, 6.30 pm. LAMAS. Venue T.B.A. Also on Zoom. Buy Tickets via Eventbrite. Non-members £2.50. Life, Death and Worship at H.M. Tower of London. Talk by Alfred R.J. Hawkins (Assistant Curator of Historic Buildings) will discuss the History and Archaeology of The Chapel Royal and Royal Peculiar of St. Peter Ad Vincula (Parish Church of The Tower) and include a chronology of the development of the building. The Archaeological excavations (2019) and subsequent analysis of skeletal remains exhumed. For details and link please visit www.lamas.org.uk/lectures.html.

Tuesday 9th January, 8pm. Amateur Geological Society. Talk on Zoom. Essex Rocks – Geology Beneath the Landscape. By Ian and Ros Mercer (Essex Rock and Mineral Society) on the deep history of Essex from 500 million years ago to the current ice age and the continuing geological processes and planning for the future. For further details and link please visit www.amgeosco.wordpress.com.

Wednesday 10th January, 2.30 pm. Mill Hill Historical Society. Trinity Church, 100 The Broadway, NW7 3TB. The Festival of Britain. A talk by David Bunell. www.millhill-hs.org.uk.

Friday 12th January, 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society. Talk on Zoom. A virtual Tour of the Maritime Greenwich World Heritage Site. By Jane Sidell (MOLA). Please visit www.enfarchsoc.org for further details and link.

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Thursday 18th January, 7.30 pm. Camden History Society. Talk on Zoom. The Destruction of Eton’s Chalcot Estate. By Peter Darley (Camden Railway History Society). It resulted from a V1 Flying Bomb that landed nearby. Talk will explore the origins of the estate and the aftermath in terms of planning and reconstruction. Please visit www.camdenhistorysociety.org for details and link.

Thursday 18th January, 8.00 pm. Historical Association. Hampstead and N.W. London Branch. Fellowship House, 136A, Willifield Way, NW11 6YD (off Finchley Road, Temple Fortune). Masada. Talk by John Levy. Hopefully, also on Zoom. Please email Gulse Koca (Chair) on kocagulse@gmail.com or telephone 07453 283090 for details of the zoom link and how to pay (There may be a voluntary charge of £5) Refreshments available afterwards.

Friday 19th January, 7.00 pm. C.O.L.A.S Talk on zoom. The Enderby Bark Shield. By Dr Sophia Adam (from the British Museum). A new and rare find from the Iron Age. Please book via Eventbrite. Visit www.colas.org.uk. HADAS may send out the link details to its members.

Thursday 25th January, 7.30 pm. Finchley Society, Drawing Room, Avenue (Stephens’) House, 17 East End Road, N3 3QE. Battle of Barnet. Talk by Paul Baker (Barnet Local History Society) for further details. Visit www.finchleysociety.org.uk. Non-members £2 at the door. Incl. refreshments.


Thanks to our contributors, Don Cooper, Eric Morgan, David Willoughby.

Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59 Potters Road, Barnet, EN5 5HS
(020 8440 4350) e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34 Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman 50 Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP
(07855 304488) e-mail: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec. Jim Nelhams 61 Potters Road Barnet EN5 5HS
(020 8449 7076) e-mail: membership@hadas.org.uk

Web site: www.hadas.org.uk

Newsletter 632 – November 2023

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 632                                    November 2023                                  Edited by Sue Willetts

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

We are pleased that we are able to resume lectures face-to-face following Covid, though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE. 7.45 for 8pm. Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after each talk. (Cash please).

Buses 143, 125, 326 and 460 pass close by, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 also passes close to Finchley Central Station.

Tuesday 14th November 2023
Dr Kris Lockyear, (University College London). Mapping Verulamium.

The Verulamium survey started in 2013 as part of a one-year AHRC Community Heritage Development award to Kris for the project Sensing the late Iron Age and Roman Past: geophysics and the landscape of Hertfordshire.   The Verulamium survey is uncovering significant information about private and public buildings, aqueducts and streets. 

Avenue House Sunday morning working party meetings

The archaeology and heritage working sessions in the HADAS workroom at Avenue are held on Sunday mornings, from 10.30am. The sessions are open to all HADAS members and are both important and convivial. It is advisable to check with the committee committee-discuss@hadas.org.uk that the session will be held before you travel, as just occasionally a session is cancelled.

Committee responsibilities: recent changes

Jim Nelhams has taken over the role of Membership Secretary, vacant since the death of Steve Brunning.  The Committee are very grateful to him for taking on this important task for HADAS. Don Cooper had been filling the role on a temporary basis and thanks are due to him for stepping into the breach.

Jim will no longer be the overall Newsletter Editor which will be taken on by Sue Willetts. However, this is an interim solution and if this role appeals to any member, please get in touch to express your interest and learn more about what’s involved.   For those unfamiliar with the process, there is a list of 12 editors to compile each monthly newsletter. We have a few slots available so please get in touch with Sue Willetts for more information. sue.willetts@london.ac.uk

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Sunday Morning Sort                                                                                      Andy Simpson

The Avenue House Sunday morning team recently took the opportunity to have a deep sort and tidy of the HADAS excavation tools and equipment.

As many of you know, (and have used) we have a good supply of essential items including wheelbarrows, mattocks, shovels, spades, pick axes, vintage ex-military trenching tools, buckets, ranging poles, hand shovels, brushes various, trowels, hammers, mallets, chisels, measuring tapes, kneeling mats, sieves, pot washing bowls, finds trays, ground sheets, and all sorts of other useful tools and items.

All of these were checked, cleaned where necessary and sorted by type and put back into the swept-out corridor cupboard. A few tattier items went to that great excavation in the sky.

In addition to the basement archive/working room, we have access to a rear storage room for larger tools such as shovels and wheelbarrows, and some boxed finds, and a corridor cupboard for smaller items. Hopefully there will be future opportunities to get them dirty again out in the field…

Clan chief’s coin hoard unearthed at Glencoe                                            Stewart Wild

A hoard of coins that may have belonged to a Highland clan chief who was murdered in the Glencoe Massacre in 1692 has been discovered under a fireplace during a recent archaeological dig. The 17th-century coins included international currency and were hidden beneath the remains of a grand stone fireplace at a site believed to have been a hunting lodge or feasting hall.

The site was associated with Alasdair Ruadh “MacIain” MacDonald of Glencoe, clan chief from 1646–1692, who was a victim of the Glencoe Massacre along with members of his family. The MacDonalds took part in the first Jacobite uprising of 1689 and were targeted in retribution with 82 clan members slaughtered on 13 February 1692, including MacIain and his wife.

Artefacts discovered during the University of Glasgow dig in August included European pottery and silver and bronze coins dating from the 1500s to 1680s. Currency from the reigns of Elizabeth I, James VI and I, Charles I, Cromwell’s Commonwealth and Charles II – as well as France and the Spanish Netherlands and Papal States – was found.

Other finds included musket and fowling shot, a gun flint and powder measure, as well as pottery from England, Germany and the Netherlands.

Archaeological student Lucy Ankers, who found the hoard, said: “As a first experience of a dig, Glencoe was amazing. I wasn’t expecting such an exciting find as one of my firsts. I don’t think I will ever beat the feeling of seeing the coins peeking out of the dirt.”  The Glencoe Massacre happened during the Jacobite bid to restore a Catholic king to the throne, backed by the MacDonalds, who supported King James VII of Scotland and II of England after he fled to France

In late January 1692, 120 men from the Earl of Argyll’s Regiment of Foot arrived in Glencoe from Invergarry, led by Robert Campbell of Glenlyon. Historians speculated that the coins may have been buried on the morning of the Massacre two weeks later.

Dr Michael Given, co-director of the University of Glasgow’s archaeological project in Glencoe, said: “These exciting finds give us a rare glimpse of a single, dramatic event. Here’s what seems an ordinary rural house, but it has a grand fireplace, impressive floor slabs, and exotic pottery imported from the Netherlands and Germany.

“And they’ve gathered up an amazing collection of coins in a little pot and buried them under the fireplace.” SOURCE: The Daily Telegraph, 9 October 2023, item edited by Stewart Wild.

Historic England Releases Aerial Investigation and Mapping Data on Open Data Hub                                                                 Information from CBA October online newsletter

In 2021 Historic England released the Aerial Archaeology Mapping Explorer, which provides free online access to over 30 years’ worth of Aerial Investigation and Mapping projects carried out or funded by Historic England. Since then, in order to make its data more accessible to more people, Historic England, with the support of the Historic England Archive, has now made all the project data available to download through the Open Data Hub. https://opendata-histoticengland,hub.arcgis.com/.

Other Societies’ Events       Eric Morgan

Not all Societies or Organisations have yet returned to pre-covid conditions. Please check with them before planning to attend.

Saturday 4th November, 10.30 am. – 4.30 pm.  Geologists’ Association Festival of Geology. University College London. North and South Cloisters, Gower Street, WC1E 6BT.  Free. Stalls from Geological Societies from all over the country, including The Amateur Geological Society – selling Jewellery, Gems, Fossils, Rocks, Minerals, Books, Maps, etc.

Saturday 11th November, 1.00 pm. – 3.00 pm.  Eclectic Tours. North-West London Series:  Discovering Colindale and its Role in Early Aviation. Colindale – or Hendon, as it was known back then – was synonymous with flying.  Learn about early aviation and other factories and important institutions of the area.  This is for Remembrance Day.  This tour costs £15.00. For more information and to book, please go to:  https://eclectic-tours.com/.

Sunday 3rd December.  Barnet Xmas Fayre. Stalls and performers in Barnet High Street, The Spires, The College (Wood Street), The Bull Centre and Wesley Hall (Xmas Café also) and Food stalls on the College Forecourt and music in the street. Details not yet listed on www.barnetarts.uk.

Thursday 7th December, 7.30 pm. Camden History Society. Camden Local Studies and Archives Centre, Holborn Library, 32-38, Theobalds Road, WC1X 8PA.  Free for members of Camden History Society. Hopefully will also be on Zoom. History of Birkbeck College. Title of lecture. Nurseries of Disaffection: Birkbeck and educating working people: an illustrated talk by Joanna Bourke.  www.camdenhistorysociety.org for details including membership rates.

Friday 8th December, 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society. Jubilee Hall, 2, Parsonage Lane / Junction Chase Side, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. The Petroglyph Survey by Anna Nicola. Visitors welcome £1.50. Visit www.enfarchsoc.org for further details.

Tuesday 12th December, 8pm. Amateur Geological Society.Talk on Zoom. Cornish Lithium Exploration. by Zoe Richardson.  For details and link please visit www.amgeosoc.wordpress.com.

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Tuesday 12th December, 6.30 pm. LAMAS. Lecture Theatre, The Gallery, Alan Baxter Associates, Cowcross Street, London, EC1M 6EL. Hybrid Meeting, so also on Zoom. Buy tickets via Eventbrite.  Non-members £2.50. The Failure of London – The Long Fourth Century.  Talk by Professor Dominic Perring (Institute of Archaeology / UCL).  Cycles of Urban Investment, followed by periods of disrepair and redundancy echoed London’s changing importance to the provincial administration.  When, how and why did this important bastion of Roman power change, characterised as ‘Decline and Fall’.  For further details please visit www.lamas.org,uk.

Wednesday 13th December, 2.30 pm. Mill Hill Historical Society, Trinity Church, 100, The Broadway, London. NW7 3TB. Fine Cell Work: Needlework in Prisons by Sarah Citroen.
Visit www.millhill-hs.org.uk for further details.

Wednesday 13th December, 8 pm. Hornsey Historical Society.  Talk on Zoom, Free for HHS Members.
A Very British Art Form: The Story of Pantomime by Malcolm Jones. Visit www.hornseyhistorical.org.uk for further details / membership rates.

With many thanks to this month’s contributors:  Eric Morgan, Andy Simpson, Stuart Wild,

Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350)
e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50, Summerlee Avenue, London N2 9QP
(07855 304488) e-mail: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Secretary Jim Nelhams, c/o Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley,
London N3 3QE (020 8449 7076) e-mail: membership@hadas.org.uk

We are pleased to have filled the vacancy of membership secretary but please address any correspondence such as change of member addresses or other miscellaneous correspondence to: 

HADAS, c/o Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley, London N3 3QE

Website at:   www.hadas.org.uk– join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.

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Newsletter 631 – October 2023

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 631 OCTOBER 2023 Edited by Robin Densem

Avenue House Sunday morning working party meetings

The archaeology and heritage working sessions in the HADAS workroom at Avenue House are held on Sunday mornings, from 10.30am. The sessions are open to all HADAS members and are both important and convivial. I think it would be wise to check with the committee (committee-discuss@hadas.org.uk ) that the session will be held before you travel, as just occasionally a session is cancelled.

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming lectures and events

We are pleased we are resuming lectures face-to-face following Covid, though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE. 7.45 for 8pm. Tea/coffee available for purchase after each talk. (Cash please).

Tuesday 10th October 2023. Melvyn Dresner: Elsyng Palace – a digger’s view.

Tuesday 14th November 2023. Kris Lockyer (University College London): Mapping Verulamium.

A selection of other societies’ events – selected from information kindly provided by Eric Morgan

NOT ALL SOCIETIES OR ORGANISATIONS HAVE RETURNED TO PRE-COVID CONDITIONS. PLEASE CHECK WITH THEM BEFORE PLANNING TO ATTEND.

Wednesday 11th October, 2.30 pm. Mill Hill Historical Society/Trinity Church, 100 The Broadway, NW7 3TB. Talk on Grahame White and The London Aerodrome. By David Keen (Ex- RAF Museum). Please visit www.millhill-hs.org.uk

Tuesday 24th October, 1-2 pm. London Metropolitan Archives, 40 Northampton Road, EC1R 0HB. A Day in a London Life 1623. Talk. Also on Zoom. Free. Booking Essential. On Shakespeare’s Achievements making him one of Jacobean London’s most famous sons. But what was life everyday like for him and his contemporaries? Please visit London Metropolitan Archives – City of London.

Sunday 5th November, 2.30 pm. Heath and Hampstead Society., Laughter in Landscape. Meet at Old Bull and Bush, North End Way, NW3 7HE. Guided Walk led by Lester Hillman (Tour Guide) About Comedy, Humour in Science, Film, Music, Local Links to Actors, Writers, Theatre and The Landscape. Lasts approx. 2 hours. Donation £5. Please contact Thomas Radice on 07941 528034 or email hhs.walks@gmail.com or visit The Heath & Hampstead Society – Fighting to preserve the wild and natural state of the Heath (heathandhampstead.org.uk)

Tuesday 7th November, 6 pm. Gresham College, Barnard’s Inn Hall, Holborn EC1N 2HH. Pilgrimages, Pandemics and The Past. Talk by Tom Holland. Also on line. Ticket Required. Register at www.gresham.ac.uk. Please see Pilgrimages, Pandemics and the Past | Gresham College. FREE. Joint with Royal Historical Society. Will explore how tracing ancient routes on foot and experiencing travel as people did in age before trains and cars can offer insights into the past. Will also draw on experience of reading Chaucer and undertaking pilgrimage during and after the pandemic.

Wednesday 8th November, 2.30 pm. Mill Hill Historical Society. (address as 11th October) History of Highgate Cemetery. Simon Edwards.

Wednesday 8th November, 6 pm. Gresham College, Were there Pagan Goddesses in Christian Europe? Talk by Ronald Hutton, view on line. Please see www.gresham.ac.uk/whats-on/pagan-goddesses Free. Considers a set of superhuman female figures found in Medieval and early modern European cultures. Mother nature the roving nocturnal lady often called Herodias, The British Fairy Queen and the Gaelic Calleach.

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Wednesday 8th November, 8 pm Hornsey Historical Society. Talk on Zoom, Charles Roach Smith by Dr Michael Rhodes. Please visit www.hornseyhistorical.org.uk for further details.

Friday 10th November, 7.30 pm Enfield Archaeological Society – Jubilee Hall, 2 Parsonage Lane/Jnc Chase side, Enfield EN2 0AJ Towards a Geoarchaeology of London. Talk by Jason Stewart. Please visit www.enfacrchsoc.org for further details.

Monday 13th November, 3 pm Barnet Museum and Local History Society. St John Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, CNR High Street/Wood Street, EN5 4BW. David Livingstone and Hadley Green – Out of Africa. Talk by John Hall.

Thursday 16th November, 8 pm. Historical Association – Hampstead and NW London Branch. Fellowship House, 136A, Willifield Way, NW11 6YD (off Finchley Road, Temple Fortune). 1942 Britain at the Brink. Talk by Taylor Downing. Argues that Britain’s darkest hour was 1942 when British people faced the prospect of defeat, when a string of Military disasters engulfed Britain in rapid succession. Also shows how unpopular Churchill became, using mass observation archive new material. Hopefully also on zoom, please email Gulse Koca (Chair) on kocagulse@gmail.com or telephone 07453 283090 for details of zoom link and how to pay (There may be a voluntary charge of £5) Refreshments afterwards. Please note change of chair. These details also apply on the talk on 19th October, shown in the Hadas September Newsletter.

Friday 17th November, 7.30. pm Wembley History Society. St Andrew’s Church Hall (behind St. Andrew’s new church) Church Lane, Kingsbury NW9 Bombed Churches of the City of London. Talk by Signe Hoffos.

Saturday 18th November, 10.30 am – 6 pm. Lamas Local History Conference. Museum of London Docklands, West India Quay, off Hertsmere road, E4 4AL. The London Menagerie – Animals in London History. Tickets are £15 (£17.50 after 1st November or £20 on the day, subject to availability) For more info, including the full programme and to book, please visit www.lamas.org.uk/conferences/20.local-history.html.

Wednesday 22nd November, 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society. North Middx Golf Club, The Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, N20 0NL. London’s Parks and Gardens. Talk by Diane Burstein (Tour Guide) Please visit www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk and click on programme or phone 0208 368 8314 for up to date details (David Berguer, Chair) Non-member £2. Bar available.

Saturday 25th November, 10 am – 4 pm. Amateur Geological Society North London Mineral Gem and Fossil Show. Trinity Church, 15 Nether Street, N12 7NN (Nr North Finchley Arts Depot, Near the Tally Ho Pub) Large Hall with Jewellery, Gems. Fossils, Rocks, Minerals, Books, Maps and refreshments. Admission £2. For details visit www.amgeosoc.wordpress.com.

Thursday 30th November, 7.15 pm. Finchley Society. Drawing Room, Avenue (Stephen’s) House, 17 East End Road, London N3 3QE. Quiz Supper with Andy Savage as Question Master. For further details please visit www.finchleysociety.org.uk.

Iceman Otzi is not the rugged warrior we had believed Stewart Wild

OTZI the Iceman was probably bald with dark skin – not too dissimilar to his desiccated state, scientists have said. The natural mummy, which dates from 5,300 years ago, was found in the Ötztal Alps at the border with Austria and Italy in September 1991, and is Europe’s oldest mummified human.
The current reconstruction of Otzi in the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology in Bolzano suggests that he had light eyes, a shaggy head of hair, a beard and the lightish skin of an Alpine climate. But genetic analysis suggests he had a predisposition for male pattern baldness, with dark eyes and dark skin.
“It was previously thought that the mummy’s skin had darkened during its preservation in the ice, but presumably what we see now is actually Otzi’s original skin colour,” said Albert Zink, the study co-author.

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Prof Johannes Krause, from the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Germany, added: “The
genome analysis revealed phenotypic traits such as high skin pigmentation, dark eye colour and male pattern baldness. It is remarkable how the reconstruction is biased by our own preconception of a Stone Age human.”


The new analysis, published in the journal Cell Genomics, also changes Otzi’s ancestry. Genetic profiling
in 2012 suggested that he had descended from a mix of native hunter-gatherers, migrating farmers from
Anatolia and Steppe herders. But the new results find no link to the Steppe herders, with scientists
discovering that modern DNA had accidentally become mixed up with the original samples.
(SOURCE: The Daily Telegraph, 17 August 2023, item edited by Stewart Wild).

Reconstruction of Ötzi mummy as shown in Prehistory Museum of Quinson, Alpes-de-Haute-Provence,
France (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Otzi-Quinson.jpg accessed 19th September 2023)

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HADAS Open Day Jim Nelhams

As advertised in previous newsletters, HADAS held an Open Day at Avenue House on Saturday 16th September.

Considerable thought and planning had gone into this event, spearheaded by Bill Bass and other members of the Sunday Morning group, with assistance from members of the Avenue House staff.

The Stephens Museum near the café was opened up for our use, and display boards, which attracted much interest, showed part of our history, including our digs. Also in the museum were some activities for children courtesy of Janet Mortimer, Sue Loveday and Sue Willetts. The tables were occupied for large parts of the day by interested children and their parents. Outside, children could also get their face painted for a small charge.

Visitors during the day included Martin Russell, His Majesty’s Deputy Lieutenant of Greater London and the Lord-Lieutenant’s Representative for Barnet, and Barnet Councillor Philip Cohen, the council nominee to the Council for British Archaeology. We signed up five new members including Councillor Cohen.

Out in the grounds, on the area of the old pond (now no longer), Don Cooper led a team demonstrating the use of our resistivity equipment.

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We were also joined by members of the Finchley Society and Barnet Medieval Festival, both groups having tables of displays.

Reaction from members of the public was very positive, with some expressing surprise that, apart from the face painting, there were no charges.

Some of Bills team involved in the open day – from left to right, Jo Nelhams, Melvyn Dresner, Roger Chapman, Janet Mortimer, Sue Loveday, Tim Curtis, Jacqui Pearce, Eric Morgan, Jim Nelhams, Don Cooper, Andy Simpson and Bill Bass.

Photos: Melvyn Dresner/Andy Simpson.

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The Battle of the Teutoburg Forest AD9: The massacre of a Roman army Robin Densem

Introduction
Following centuries as a republic, Rome and its dominions was ruled as an empire by the adopted son of Julius Caesar, Augustus, as its first emperor, from 27 BC to his death in AD 14. After a Roman defeat of the banks of the River Rhine in 16 BC when the Roman governor of Gaul, Marcus Lollius, was defeated by a German raiding party which captured a legionary standard, Augustus turned his attention to the evidently dangerous north. Not satisfied with the Rhine as a frontier, he decided to advance into Germany to move the frontier 800km north-eastwards from the Rhine to the River Elbe.

Ancient sources tell us about the Roman attempts to conquer Germany and about the three or four day long battle of the Teutoburg Forest in AD 9 when the Germans massacred a Roman army of three legions and nine auxiliary units, a force of perhaps 20,000 men, or more, led by Publius Quinctilius Varus (Varus). Augustus was so distraught after the loss of the three legions that the Roman writer Suetonius says Augustus often wailed, “Quinctilius Varus, give me back my legions!” Augustus had had a total of around 30 legions, each of about 5,000 men, accompanied by auxiliary units of 500 and others of 1,000 men which doubled the total size of his forces. The armies of auxiliaries and legionaries were to defend the Roman empire and to conduct offensive operations, so the loss of three legions and nine auxiliary units was a disaster considering the extent of the Roman empire and the length of its borders. After the battle, called by the Roman the Clades Variana, the Varian Disaster, the Augustus abandoned attempts to conquer Germany. Adrian Murdoch’s 2008 title for his book ‘Rome’s Greatest Defeat: Massacre in the Teutoburg Forest’ gives a flavour of a modern, perhaps overstated, view of the very serious extent of the Roman disaster. (It could be argued that Hannibal’s victory of the Romans in 216 BC at the battle of Cannae was a greater defeat for the Romans who lost more men then.)

Ancient Latin sources for the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest include the Roman History, written by Velleius Paterculus who lived c. 19 BC – c. AD 31; Strabo’s Geography that he wrote in c. AD 20; Tacitus’s Annals (c. AD 120); and Suetonius’s Lives of the Caesars (c. AD 121). Dio Cassius was a later writer who wrote his Roman History in Greek in the years AD 211-233. None of the ancient sources are exactly contemporaneous with the battle, and all relied on earlier sources, including official records. Excitingly, archaeology has revealed the actual battle site and many artifacts, and offers a correlation, confirmation and amplification of the account from the well-known ancient written sources.

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The text below on the historical background and description of the battle is from Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_campaigns_in_Germania_(12_BC_%E2%80%93_AD_16)#Campaigns_of_Tiberius,_Ahenobarbus_and_Vinicius accessed 7th January 2023.
Campaigns before the Clades Variana (the Varian Disaster): Campaigns of Drusus (the elder, 36 BC – 9 BC)
Nero Claudius Drusus (Drusus the Elder), an experienced general and stepson of Augustus, was made governor of Gaul in 13 BC. The following year saw an uprising in Gaul – a response to the Roman census and taxation policy set in place by Augustus. For most of the following year he conducted reconnaissance and dealt with supply and communications. He also had several forts built along the Rhine, including Argentoratum (Strasburg, France), Moguntiacum (Mainz, Germany), and Castra Vetera (Xanten, Germany).
Drusus first saw action following an incursion by the Sicambri and the Usipetes from Germany into Gaul, which he repelled before launching a retaliatory attack across the Rhine. This marked the beginning of Rome’s 28 years of campaigns across the lower Rhine.

He crossed the Rhine with his army and invaded the land of the Usipetes. He then marched north against the Sicambri and pillaged their lands. Travelling down the Rhine and landing in what is now the Netherlands, he conquered the Frisians, who thereafter served in his army as allies. Then, he attacked the Chauci, who lived in northwestern Germany in what is now Lower Saxony. Around winter, he recrossed the Rhine, and returned to Rome.

The following spring, Drusus (the Elder) began his second campaign across the Rhine. He first subdued the Usipetes, and then marched east to the Visurgis (Weser River). Then, he passed through the territory of the Cherusci, whose territory stretched from the Ems to the Elbe, and pushed as far east as the Weser. This was the furthest east into northern Europe that a Roman general had ever travelled, a feat which won him much renown. Between depleted supplies and the coming winter, he decided to march back to friendly territory. On the return trip, Drusus’ legions were nearly destroyed at Arbalo by Cherusci warriors taking advantage of the terrain to harass them.

Drusus was made consul for the following year, and it was voted that the doors to the Temple of Janus be closed, a sign the empire was at peace. However, peace didn’t last, for in the spring of 10 BC, he once again campaigned across the Rhine and spent the majority of the year attacking the Chatti. In his third campaign, he conquered the Chatti and other German tribes, and then returned to Rome, as he had done before at the end of the campaign season.

In 9 BC, he began his fourth campaign, this time as consul. Despite bad omens, Drusus again attacked the Chatti and advanced as far as the territory of the Suebi, in the words of Cassius Dio, “conquering with difficulty the territory traversed and defeating the forces that attacked him only after considerable bloodshed.” Afterwards, he once again attacked the Cherusci, and followed the retreating Cherusci

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across the Weser River, and advanced as far as the Elbe, “pillaging everything in his way”, as Cassius Dio puts it. Ovid states that Drusus extended Rome’s dominion to new lands that had only been discovered recently. On his way back to the Rhine, Drusus fell from his horse and was badly wounded. His injury became seriously infected, and after thirty days, Drusus died from the disease, most likely gangrene.
When Augustus learned Drusus was sick, he sent Tiberius to quickly go to him. Ovid states Tiberius was at the city of Pavia at the time, and when he had learned of his brother’s condition, he rode to be at his dying brother’s side. He arrived in time, but it wasn’t long before Drusus drew his last breath.

Campaigns before the Clades Variana (the Varian Disaster): Campaigns of Tiberius, Ahenobarbus and Vinicius

After Drusus’ death, Tiberius was given command of the Rhine’s forces and waged two campaigns within Germania over the course of 8 and 7 BC. He marched his army between the Rhine and the Elbe, and met little resistance except from the Sicambri. Tiberius came close to exterminating the Sicambri, and had those who survived transported to the Roman side of the Rhine, where they could be watched more closely. Velleius Paterculus portrays Germany as essentially conquered, and Cassiodorus writing in the 6th century AD asserts that all Germans living between the Elbe and the Rhine had submitted to Roman power. However, the military situation in Germany was very different from what was suggested by imperial propaganda.

Lucius Domitius Ahenobarbus was appointed as the commander in Germany by Augustus in 6 BC, and three years later, in 3 BC, he reached and crossed the Elbe with his army. Under his command causeways were constructed across the bogs somewhere in the region between the Ems and the Rhine, called pontes longi. The next year, conflicts between the Rome and the Cherusci flared up. While the elite members of one faction sought stronger ties with Roman leaders, the Cherusci as a whole would continue to resist for the next twenty years. Although Ahenobarbus had marched to the Elbe and directed the construction of infrastructure in the region east of the Rhine, he did not do well against the Cherusci warrior bands, who he tried to handle like Tiberius had the Sicambri. Augustus recalled Ahenobarbus to Rome in 2 BC and replaced him with a more seasoned military commander, Marcus Vinicius.

Between 2 BC and AD 4, Vinicius commanded the five legions stationed in Germany. At around the time of his appointment, many of the Germanic tribes arose in what the historian Velleius Paterculus calls the “vast war”. However, no account of this war exists. Vinicius must have performed well, for he was awarded the ornamenta triumphalia on his return to Rome.

Again in AD 4, Augustus sent Tiberius to the Rhine frontier as the commander in Germany. He campaigned in northern Germany for the next two years. During the first year, he conquered the Canninefati, the Attuarii, the Bructeri, and subdued the Cherusci. Soon thereafter, he declared the Cherusci “friends of the Roman people.” In AD 5, he campaigned against the Chauci, and then coordinated an attack into the heart of Germany both overland and by river. The Roman fleet and legions met on the Elbe, whereupon Tiberius departed from the Elbe to march back westward at the end of the summer without stationing occupying forces at this eastern position. This accomplished a demonstration to his troops, to Rome, and to the German peoples that his army could move largely unopposed through Germany, but like Drusus, he did nothing to hold territory. Tiberius’ forces were attacked by German troops on the way west back to the Rhine, but successfully defended themselves.

The elite of the Cherusci tribe came to be special friends of Rome after Tiberius’s campaigns of AD 5. In the preceding years, a power struggle had resulted in the alliance of one party with Rome. In this tribe was a ruling lineage that played a critical role in forging this friendship between the Cherusci and Rome. Belonging to this elite clan, was the young Arminius, who was around twenty-two at the time. Membership in this clan gave him special favour with Rome. Tiberius lent support to this ruling clan to gain control over the Cherusci, and he granted the tribe a free status among the German peoples. To keep an eye on the Cherusci, Tiberius had a winter base built on the River Lippe.

It was Roman opinion that by AD 6 the German tribes had largely been pacified, if not conquered. Only the Marcomanni, under king Maroboduus, remained to be subdued. Rome planned a massive pincer attack

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against them involving 12 legions from Germania, Illyricum, and Rhaetia, but when word of an uprising in Illyricum arrived the attack was called off and concluded peace with Maroboduus, recognizing him as king.

Part of the Roman strategy was to resettle troublesome tribal peoples, to move them to locations where Rome could keep better tabs on them and away from their regular allies. Tiberius resettled the Sicambri, who had caused particular problems for Drusus, in a new site west of the Rhine, where they could be watched more closely.

Campaign of Varus: Prelude
Although it was assumed that the proto-province of Germania Magna, east of the Rhine, had been pacified, and Rome had begun integrating the region into the empire, there was a risk of rebellion during the military subjugation of a province. Following Tiberius’s departure to Illyricum, Augustus appointed Publius Quinctilius Varus to the German command, as he was an experienced officer, but he was not the great military leader a serious threat would warrant. Varus imposed civic changes on the Germans, including a tax – what Augustus expected any governor of a subdued province to do. However, the Germanic tribes began rallying around a new leader, Arminius of the Cherusci. Arminius, who Rome considered an ally, and who had fought in the Roman army before. He accompanied Varus who was in Germania with the three Roman legions XVII, XVIII, and XIX to finish the conquest of Germania.

Not much is known of the campaign of AD 9 until the return trip to the Rhine, when Varus left with his legions from their camp on the Weser in Germany. On their way back to Castra Vetera, Xanten, on the Rhine Varus received reports from Arminius that there was a small uprising west of Varus’s Roman camp in Germany. The Romans were on the way back to the Rhine anyway, and the small revolt would only be a small detour – about two days away. Varus departed to deal with the revolt believing that Arminius would ride ahead to garner the support of his tribesmen for the Roman cause. In reality, Arminius was actually preparing an ambush. Varus took no extra precautions on the march to quell the uprising, as he was expecting no trouble.

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Victory of Arminius
Arminius’ revolt came during the Pannonian revolt, at a time when the majority of Rome’s legions were tied down in Illyricum. Varus only had three legions, which were isolated in the heart of Germany. Scouts were sent ahead of Roman forces as the column approached Kalkriese. Scouts were local Germans as they would have had knowledge of the terrain, and so would had to have been a part of Arminius’ ploy. Indeed, they reported that the path ahead was safe. Historians Wells and Abdale say that the scouts likely alerted the Germans to the advancing column, giving them time to get into position.

The Roman column followed the road going north until it began to wrap around a hill. The hill was to the west of the road and was wooded. There was boggy terrain all around the hill, woodland to the east, and a swamp to the north (out of sight of the Roman column until they reached the bend taking the road southwest around the hill’s northeastern point). Roman forces continued along the sloshy sandbank at the base of the hill until the front of the column was attacked. They heard loud shouting and spears began falling on them from the woody slope to their left. Spears then began falling from the woods to their right and the front fell into disorder from panic. The surrounded soldiers were unable to defend themselves because they were marching in close formation and the terrain was too muddy for them to move effectively.

Within ten minutes, word reached the middle of the column where Varus was. Communication was hampered by the column being packed densely in the narrow road. Not knowing the full extent of the attack, Varus ordered his forces to advance forward to reinforce his forces at the front. This pushed the soldiers at the front further into the enemy, and thousands of German warriors began to pour out of the woods to attack up close. The soldiers at the middle and rear of the column began to flee in all directions, but most of them were caught in the bog or killed. Varus realized the severity of his situation and killed himself with his sword. A few Romans survived and made their way back to the winter quarters at Xanten by staying hidden and carefully travelling through the forests. Roman officers were gorily tortured and killed, and some captured Roman soldiers were kept alive as slaves of the Germans.

It is a rare achievement to locate the actual site of an early battle, and credit is to be given to Tony Clunn for his great achievement. The locations of the Roman victory under Suetonius Paulinus over Boudica in AD 60/61 in Britain, and the Roman victory under Agricola over the Caledonians, in Scotland, in AD 84, for instance, have yet to be found, archaeologically.

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Discovery of the Battlefield (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tony_Clunn accessed 9.02,2023)
John Anthony Spencer Clunn MBE (10 May 1946 – 3 August 2014) was a major in the British Army, and an amateur archaeologist who discovered the main site of the Battle of the Teutoburg Forest at Kalkriese Hill. Clunn searched for Roman coins with a metal detector as a hobby. In 1987, when he was attached to the Royal Tank Regiment in Osnabrück, he asked Wolfgang Schlüter, at the time the archaeologist for the District of Osnabrück, where he should look. He was advised to search 20 km north of the city, where Roman coins had previously been found, though none for 18 years.

Schlüter’s recommendation was based upon a study of maps and the 19th-century historian Theodor Mommsen’s proposal that the Kalkriese area was a likely location of the battle which took place in AD 9. On his first two days, in July 1987 Clunn found 105 Roman coins from the reign of Augustus (27BC – AD 14)2, mostly in excellent condition. No coins found at the site post-date AD 9. In 1988 he also discovered Roman sling shots at three locations in the vicinity of Kalkriese, the first indisputable evidence of Roman military activity there. Previously there had been many conflicting theories about the location of the battle, and scholars had searched for it without success for 600 years.

Archaeological Evidence

On the basis of Clunn’s findings, Schlüter began a comprehensive excavation of the site in 1989, later led by Susanne Wilbers-Rost. The finds are now displayed at the Varusschlacht (Varus Battle) Museum and Park Kalkriese, opened in 2002. Clunn went on to investigate the entire area around Kalkriese. The coins he discovered have made it possible to reconstruct the route taken by the Roman legionaries under Varus and to determine where they were ambushed and massacred. In Clunn’s opinion, the march route corresponds exactly to the environment described by Dio Cassius.

The archaeologists have found remains of Roman swords and daggers, parts of javelins and spears, arrowheads, slingstones, fragments of helmets, nails of soldiers’ sandals, belts, hooks of chain mail and fragments of armour plate. Other finds were less military in character, but may have belonged to soldiers nevertheless: locks, keys, razors, a scale, weights, chisels, hammers, pickaxes, buckets, finger rings. A doctor may have owned surgical instruments; seal boxes and a stylus may have been among the

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possessions of a scribe; and a cook must have carried cauldrons, casseroles, spoons, and amphoras. Finally, jewellery, hairpins, and a disk brooch suggest the presence of women. Overall, archaeological investigations at Kalkriese have unearthed more than 7,000 artifacts, and various archaeological excavations have been ongoing there since the site was discovered by Tony Clunn in 1987-88.

Excavations show the Germans had constructed a rampart or embankment at their ambush site from which to fight the Romans. The rampart presenting as a zigzag-ging structure c. 400 m long from east to west, between two creeks. It is no longer visible above ground level due to layers of soil. Excavation work showed that the wall was erected using sod, sand, and in parts limestone. Initially, the wall measured circa 3 m in width and almost 2m in height. Today, the remaining structure is 0.3 m in height due to the levelling of the rampart and erosion, and a slight 15m wide rising can be detected. At least parts of the wall were bolstered by a wooden parapet. (Rost, Achim and Wilbers-Rost, Susanne, 2019,‘Archaeology of Kalkriese’ in Smith, C (ed) Encyclopaedia of Global Archaeology https://www.academia.edu/67689095/Archaeology_of_Kalkriese?auto=download&email_work_card=download-paper accessed 3rd January 2023).

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Some sources
• Livius.org ‘Teutoburg Forest (9 CE)’ https://www.livius.org/articles/battle/teutoburg-forest-9-ce/kalkriese/ accessed 9th February 2023
• Rost, Achim and Wilbers-Rost, Susanne 2011 ‘Weapons at the Battlefield of Kalkriese’, Gladius 30:117-136 https://www.researchgate.net/publication/270078400_Weapons_at_the_battlefield_of_Kalkriese accessed 4th January 2023
• Rost, Achim and Wilbers-Rost, Susanne, 2019,‘Archaeology of Kalkriese’ in Smith, C (ed) Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology https://www.academia.edu/67689095/Archaeology_of_Kalkriese?auto=download&email_work_card=download-paper accessed 3rd January 2023
• Tacitus Annals, Book 1, chapters 55-71 https://penelope.uchicago.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Tacitus/Annals/1D*.html accessed 7th January 2022
• Wikipedia ‘Battle of the Teutoburg Forest’ Battle of the Teutoburg Forest – Wikipedia accessed 9th February 2023
• Wikipedia ‘Roman campaigns in Germania (12 BC – AD 16)’https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_campaigns_in_Germania_(12_BC_%E2%80%93_AD_16)#Campaigns_of_Tiberius,_Ahenobarbus_and_Vinicius accessed 7th January 2023.
• Wilbers-Rost, Susanne, 2009 ‘Research on the Varus Battle in and around Kalkriese’, Archaeologie Online https://www.archaeologie-online.de/artikel/2009/thema-varusschlacht/forschungen-zur-varusschlacht-in-und-um-kalkriese/ accessed 4th January 2023
• Wilbers-Rost, Susanne; Großkopf,Birgit and Rot, Achim, 2012 The Ancient Battlefield at Kalkriese https://www.jstor.org/stable/26240377#metadata_info_tab_contents accessed 4th January 2023

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With thanks to the contributors: Sue Loveday, Eric Morgan, Jim Nelhams & Stewart Wild
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Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350),
email: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer 34 Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121), email: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50 Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP (07855 304488),
email: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Sec. Vacancy

Website: www.hadas.org.uk

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Newsletter 630 – September 2023

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 630 September 2023 Edited by Paul Jackson

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

We are pleased that we are able to resume lectures face-to-face following Covid, though lectures in winter may be on Zoom. Lectures are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE. 7.45 for 8pm. Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after each talk. (Cash please)

Buses 143, 125, 326 and 460 pass close by, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 also passes close to Finchley Central Station.

Tuesday 12th September 2023
Mike Noronha, Barnet Museum. The Battle of Barnet Survey and Project. Mike helped to coordinate ‘The Barnet battlefield project’ on behalf of Barnet Museum which mostly took place 2015-2018. The aim was to locate more precisely the battle area using a large-scale metal-detecting survey by Huddersfield University (a method used successfully at Bosworth), digs by community archaeologists and volunteers processing finds in the museum. One of the digs was on the possible site of the Chantry Chapel (built to commemorate the dead) in Wrotham Park. This was led by Cotswold Archaeology with HADAS taking part in supplying some diggers and tools. Mike will inform us of the results and of any future work.

SATURDAY 16th SEPTEMBER at Avenue House,10am –4pm. HADAS OPEN DAY. See August newsletter for details. Please come.

Tuesday 10th October 2023
Melvyn  Dresner.  Elsyng Palace: a digger’s view – see also article on page 3 of this issue

Tuesday 14th November 2023
Kris Lockyear, (University College London). Mapping Verulamium

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NEW HADAS TEMPORARY EXHIBITION Andy Simpson

On 9th August, with the kind permission and co-operation of Barnet Borough Heritage Development Officer, Hugh Petrie, members of HADAS attended Hendon Town Hall to install our new temporary display in the ’Heritage Barnet’ area of the foyer there.

The Sunday morning team have spent the last month or two preparing this new display, its exhibits and captions, and most of them were able to attend to fill up ‘their’ cases.
We have included, in the Roman corner, material from the Pipers Green Lane cremation burial from the foot of Brockley Hill and the Moxom Collection found at its summit; also items from more recent excavations at Hendon School and even Avenue House grounds. There are items from the 1960s excavations at Church End Farm Hendon, the former Church Farm Museum in the 1990s, and the Burroughs Gardens, Fuller Street /Chequers Pub areas of Hendon in the


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1970s. A selection of HADAS publications are included and also there are new format HADAS membership forms to collect.

With thanks to the set-up team mostly seen in the picture below – (left to right) Hugh Petrie, Bill Bass, Andy Simpson, Melvyn Dresner, Peter Nicholson and Janet Mortimer – plus Tim Curtis (not pictured).

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Do go along to Hendon Town Hall and view our new exhibition! It will hopefully be available to view until Christmas.

Elsyng Palace Dig 2023: a digger`s view Melvyn Dresner

Enfield Archaeological Society (EAS) has been digging at Elysng Palace since the 1960s and especially since 2004. This summer’s dig’s research aim was to locate the inner gatehouse and to identify the relationship between the moat features dug in 2022 and other buildings found on site in previous years, in particular the northern range.

Elysng Palace was a 15th century royal palace that was owned by Tudor monarchs. Prior to that there is evidence of medieval occupation. For the Tudor palace, we have substantial structural features, as well as rubble across the site.

This year revealed walls in situ, both internal walls and structures such as turrets or towers. As the palace is a scheduled monument, the archaeological design brief has been agreed with Dr Jane Sidell, Inspector of Ancient Monuments, Historic England.

BBC Digging for Britain with Dr Alice Roberts will feature the dig early in 2024. Alice, as well as a being a TV presenter, is Professor of Public Engagement in Science at the University of Birmingham.

To find out more about the 2023 dig, you can read the daily blog on the EAS website: https://www.enfarchsoc.org/

For the October’s HADAS lecture, he will provide a digger’s insight into this year’s dig.

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Now you can order Elysng: Enfield’s Lost Palace Revealed by Neil and Jon Pinchbeck from EAS: https://www.enfarchsoc.org/publications/

Romans built more in South-West than was once thought Stewart Wild

The Romans built more towns and roads in the South-West than archaeologists have thought, research has found. Experts at the University of Exeter discovered a Roman road network spanning Devon and Cornwall as well as a grid system of streets in North Tawton, Devon, suggesting its importance as a settlement.

Dr Joao Fonte, who led the research alongside Dr Christopher Smart, both specialists in landscape archaeology and the heritage of the Roman Empire, said that the findings suggested that the South-West was more ‘Romanised’ than previously thought. “We understand that the roads were probably constructed by animal-drawn wheeled vehicles, avoiding flooded areas as much as possible,” he added.

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After the conquest of Britain, Dr Fonte said, the entire network of roads would have been in use and the discovery “confirms that the South-West – Devon and Cornwall – were no different from other, more Romanised regions. The Roman influence was profound.”

In North Tawton, the Romans may have been interested in the area’s mining resources, he said, while its location in the middle of the region could have been useful in linking the site to ships and other resources. There was evidence of a grid system of streets and signs of the region’s first known amphitheatre, enclosed by both a rampart and a ditch, meaning that while it might not have been a full Roman city such as Londinium or Exeter (Isca Dumnoniorum), it was a town of some importance.

The researchers used laser scans collected as part of the Environment Agency’s national LiDAR programme to identify sections of road west of the previously understood boundary. Among the insights is that, far from Exeter being the main nerve centre, it was North Tawton that supported vital connections with tidal estuaries north and south of Bodmin and Dartmoor.
“Despite more than seventy years of scholarship, published maps of the Roman road network in southern Britain have remained largely unchanged and all are consistent in showing that west of Exeter there was little solid evidence for a system of long-distance roads,” Dr Smart said.

SOURCE: The Daily Telegraph, 8 August 2023, item edited by Stewart Wild

The following information has been taken from Heritage Alliance Sue Willetts

Campaign to Boost Free Bus Travel This Summer

The Department for Transport (DfT) has launched a campaign to encourage more older people to make use of their free bus passes to get a ‘culture fix’ and rediscover local attractions. The campaign aims to improve wellbeing amongst older and disabled people as well as promote more sustainable forms of travel and grow the economy.

See more about the Take the Bus campaign at https://communitynews.network/2023/07/25/watch-take-the-bus-campaign/.

British Archaeologists Call for Stronger Protections for Archaeology Sites

Archaeologists and palaeontologists across the country have warned that an important site in the Cotswolds where well-preserved ice-age mammoths have been discovered could be cut off to British researchers. The landowners have requested finds be returned and there are concerns that objects are being exported to the UAE, with archaeologists highlighting the lack of legislation in place to prevent this. Read more at –
https://www.theheritagealliance.org.uk/blog/heritage-sector-calls-for-all-political-parties-to-put-the-past-at-the-heart-of-their-plans-for-the-future/

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Other Societies’ Events Eric Morgan

Not all Societies or Organisations have yet returned to pre-covid conditions. Please check with them before planning to attend.

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Sunday 10th September. 2pm. COLAS, Old St. Pancras Churchyard. Dying to get in. Visit with Lester Hillman leading a guided walk with an archaeological perspective on this ancient burial ground. The visit offers a chance to see the Grade II* listed church which has Roman fabric and has just completed works of repair and redecoration. Meet 1.50 pm at Old St. Pancras Church, Pancras Road, NW1 1UL, in park. Churchyard is immediately behind St. Pancras International Station.

Wednesday 13th September 8pm. Hornsey Historical Society. Talk on Zoom. Venice and the British by Martin Heard. Email hornseyhistoricalchairman@gmail.com for link or visit www.hornseyhistorical.org.uk

Friday 15th September. 7.30 pm. Wembley Historical Society. St. Andrew’s Church Hall, (behind St. Andrew’s New Church), Church Lane, Kingsbury, NW9. Dan Dare. Pilot of the future. Talk by Lester Hillman (see COLAS above). Looking back nearly 75 years, The Eagle comic of the 1950’s was remarkably prescient. Lester explains the history and London links along with its insightful writing, images, clear predictions and some surprises. Visitors £3. Refreshments in the interval.

Thursday 21st September 8pm. Enfield Society. A history of Enfield Chase at Jubilee Hall, 2 Parsonage Lane / Junction Chase Side, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. Talk by Martin Paine, preceded by AGM.
The first of two talks that aim to bring to life the medieval and renaissance worlds of Enfield Chase, drawing on an array of sources including hunting treatises, literature, maps, and archival records. Martin aims to demonstrate why an understanding of Enfield Chase is essential to understanding the history of Enfield, including the grand houses, palaces and lodges that were once so prominent in the local landscape. Martin’s second talk will take place on Monday 16th October at 8pm.

Thursday 25th September 7.30 pm. Camden History Society. Talk on Zoom. 50 years of Fitzrovia News by Nick Bailey, Sue Blundell and Linus Rees (Editors). On the origins of the paper and later development, illustrating some of the leading themes and stories and in the contribution of community newsletters to recording and disseminating local history. Visit www.camdenhistorysociety.org for details.

Tuesday 3rd October. 1-2pm Society of Antiquaries, Burlington House, Piccadilly, W1J 0BE, also on Zoom. Duke Alexander and his Sarcophagi. Talk by Prof. Aidan Dodson.
Also Wednesday 4th October. 5 pm. British Archaeological Association at the Society of Antiquaries. Reconstructing Bury St. Edmund’s Abbey. Talk by Dr. Steven Brindle (E.H.) Tea.
Also Thursday 5th October 5-6 pm Society of Antiquaries. Also on Zoom. Forging iron from the sky. Talk by Ian Thackray.
Also Thursday 12th October. 5-6 pm Society of Antiquaries, Also on Zoom. The wood that built London. Chris Schüler.
Also Thursday 19th October, 5-6 pm Society of Antiquaries. Also on Zoom. Mills Whip Projects-London’s Civil War defences: Rewriting history. Talk by Mike Hutchinson and Peter Milne. Also on Zoom.
Also Thursday 26th October, 5-6 pm Society of Antiquaries. Also on Zoom. The Athenaeum Club. Talk by Michael Wheeler.

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Lectures are free but donations are welcome. Details and bookings through the website www.sal.org.uk/events.

Monday 9th October, 3 pm. Barnet Museum & Local History Society. St. John the Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, corner High Street, Wood Street, Barnet, EN5 4BW. Enfield Chase: the making of a man-made landscape. Talk by John Leatherdale. Free to members. Visitors – £2.

Wednesday 11th October. 7.30 pm. Camden History Society. Talk on Zoom. Artists, refugees & spies in Belsize in the 1930s by Averil Nottage. Including the Mall Studios (off Parkhill Rd), home to Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth, Ben Nicholson and critic Herbert Read and the iconic modernist block of Lawn Road Flats which welcomed many exiles including communist political refugees from Germany & Austria, some who set up British spy networks. www.camdenhistorysociety.org for details.

Wednesday 11th October. 8 pm Hornsey Historical Society. Talk on Zoom. Picturing the past and the present. Email hornseyhistoricalchairman@gmail.com for details or www.hornseyhistorical.org.uk.

Friday 13th October. 7.30 pm. Enfield Archaeological Society. Jubilee Hall, 2 Parsonage Lane, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. Roman road to a dual carriageway – archaeological consultancy on the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine Project. Talk by David Lakin. Visit www.enfarchsoc.org for further details.

Monday 16th October 8 pm Enfield Society. Enfield Chase continued. See 21st Sept entry.
Martin Paine explores the rich history of the local area and the visible legacy of the Chase today.

Wednesday 18th October. 7.30 pm. Willesden Local History Society. St. Mary’s Church Hall, bottom of Neasden Lane, NW10 (round corner from Magistrates’ Court). Willesden’s post-war prefab-homes. Talk by Philip Grant (Brent Archives) may also be on Zoom. www.willesden-local-history.co.uk.
If not a member, buy a ticket £3, for details www.willesden-local-history.co.uk.

Thursday 19th October, 8 pm Historical Association: Hampstead and N.W. London branch. Fellowship House, 136a Willifield Way, NW11 6YD (off Finchley Road, Temple Fortune) The Mayans and Aztecs. Talk by Ian Mursell, hopefully also on Zoom. Email Jeremy Berkoff (Chair) jeremyberkoff@mack.com or telephone 01793 229521 for details of Zoom link and how to pay. There may be a voluntary charge of £5. Refreshments afterwards.

Friday 20th October, 7pm COLAS. St. Olave’s Church, Hart Street, EC3R 7NB Human remains from the River Thames. Talk by Dr. Nichola Arthur (Natural History Museum) A Palaeopathologist examines the who, how and why of human bones from the Thames and its deposit. Also on Zoom. Book via Eventbrite. www.colas.org.uk HADAS may send out the link to its members.

Friday 20th October. 7.30 pm. Wembley History Society, St. Andrew’s Church Hall, (behind St. Andrew’s New Church), Church Lane, Kingsbury, NW9. The archaeology of the Thames foreshore. Talk by Dr. Will Rathouse (Senior Community Archaeologist for the Thames Discovery Programme hosted by MOLA) Visitors £3. Refreshments in interval.

Wednesday 25th October. 7.45 pm. Friern Barnet & District Local History Society. North Middlesex Golf Club, The Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, N20 0NL. Westminster at war: How the Luftwaffe destroyed the House of Commons. Talk by Barry Hall. Visit www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk and click on programme or phone 020 8368 8814 for up-to-date details (David Berguer, Chair). Non-members £2. Bar available.

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Thursday 26th October. 7.30 pm Finchley Society, Drawing Room, Avenue (Stephens’) House, 17 East End Road, N3 3QE. Spymaster: the man who saved MI6. Talk by Dr Helen Fry about Thomas Joseph Kendrick, one of the most senior spymasters of the British Secret Intelligence Service in the 20th Century. Further details www.finchleysociety.org.uk. Non-members £2 at the door. Refreshments in interval.

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With many thanks to this month’s contributors: Melvyn Dresner, Eric Morgan, Andy Simpson, Stewart Wild, Sue Willetts.
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Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350)
e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50, Summerlee Ave, London N2 9QP
(07855 304488) e-mail: treasurer@hadas.org.uk


Membership Sec Vacancy


While we have no Membership Secretary

for the present, please address any correspondence such as change of member addresses or other miscellaneous correspondence to:

HADAS, c/o Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley, London N3 3QE

Website at: www.hadas.org.uk – join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.

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Newsletter 629 – August 2023

By | HADAS, Latest Newsletter, News, Past Newsletters, Volume 11 : 2020 , 2021 - 2024 | No Comments

No. 629 August 2023 Edited by Jim Nelhams

HADAS DIARY – Forthcoming Lectures and Events

Lectures, which are currently not on Zoom, are held in the Drawing Room, Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley N3 3QE. 7.45 for 8pm. Tea/Coffee/biscuits available for purchase after each talk. (Cash please.)

Buses 13, 143, 125, 326 and 460 pass close by Avenue House, and it is a five to ten-minute walk from Finchley Central Station on the Barnet Branch of the Northern Line. Bus 382 passes close to Finchley Central Station.

Tuesday 12th September 2023 Mike Noronha, Barnet Museum
The Battle of Barnet Survey and Project

Tuesday 10th October 2023 Lecture to be arranged

Tuesday 14th November 2023 Kris Lockyear
Mapping Verulamium

Saturday 16th September, 10am – 4pm
HADAS “Open Day” at Avenue House
See poster below

Subscriptions by Cheque

The annual subscription was due on the 1/4/2023. Members who pay by cheque and have not yet sent their cheque, please address it to:

HADAS
C/o Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley. London N3 3QE
If you have sent your cheque to Steve Brunning’s old address, please let us know.

Future Newsletters

HADAS nearly did not have a newsletter this month. At the deadline given in last month’s newsletter, only one article had been received which would have given us 4 pages after including the list of Other Societies’ Events. Postage and printing would still have cost the same amounts if we used four pages.

This is your newsletter and you can help to keep it going by submitting items of interest. Even half a page helps. We could also do with another couple of editors – which involves assembling submitted items – not writing them – unless you want to. Contact jim_nelhams@hotmail.com if you can help in any way, or for more information.
Thank you.

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No Dinosaurs were hurt in the making of this poster, if you want to help let us know. Its archaeology not paleontology. We know you know. ****************************************************************

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The City Wall at Vine Street Janet Mortimer

Underneath a coffee shop a short walk from Tower Hill Station is one of the newest chances to see more of the London Roman City Wall. This little publicised and hard to find site opened in May of this year and is a fascinating glimpse of the wall built 2,000 years ago. The large section of wall, complete with bastion reminds us how durable the structures built by the Romans were, especially contrasted with the nearby very modern “Shard” and “Cheesegrater” buildings.

Items that were found during the excavations are displayed in a very pleasing manner in cabinets ranging from the oldest finds to the newest. The captions are interesting and informative, with comments such as wondering what the Romans would say if they could see us getting excited over their rubbish – and wondering what archaeologists of the future will make of our own rubbish!

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Although not large, a visit to this attraction is well worth it, especially as it is free (although you need to pre-book). There are other outside sections of the Roman Wall that you can visit whilst you are in the area, and you can even hold hands with Trajan!

The Tower Hill Sundial Jim Nelhams

Just up the stairs from the statue of Trajan to the south of Tower Hill Station is a large sundial. Around its edge are pictures reflecting the history of London from AD43. Look especially at “The Peasants’ Revolt”. In one corner in the cload, there is a familiar lady waving her handbag!!!

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HADAS Excavation at ‘Hopscotch’ 88 High St, Barnet EN5 5SN
(Part 6 the finds – Animal Bones, by Geraldine Missig.)
Site code OPS22

‘Hopscotch’, a shop located at 88 High Street, Barnet, hosted in its backyard an exploratory trench which produced 88 animal bone fragments of which 67 weighing 1394g were identified to species and anatomical part. Unfortunately, 20 fragments weighing 107g lacked the sufficient distinguishing features for identification. Of the 20 fragments, ten were sheep size, eight were cattle size and two were unidentified bird. In addition to the bone group, 18 oyster shell fragments, weighing 94g were retrieved.

Method
The bone fragments were identified by reference to the bone collection at Birkbeck, University of London and recorded for HADAS on an Excel spreadsheet noting species, anatomical part, side, state of fusion (following Schmid 1972), proportion of bone present, weight, and any modification such as dog or rodent gnawing, charring or butchery.

Cohen & Sarjeantson’s manual for the identification of birds (1996), was used to verify the identity of the bones of domestic fowl and woodpigeon from (001).

Apart from a deciduous fourth premolar and distal metatarsal, both of which were identified as sheep, there were no other diagnostic fragments among the caprine elements to distinguish between sheep and goat, which below will be referred to as sheep. (Boessneck 1969).

Mandible wear stages followed Grant’s illustrations of tooth wear stages (1982) with Payne’s suggested age attribution for eruption/wear state (1973) for sheep/goat.

All measurements were made by vernier callipers according to the von den Driesch guidelines.
Each identified specimen was counted (NISP) and where two fragments joined, they were counted as one. All oyster fragments were counted NISP but their minimum number (MNI) was established by the presence of more than 50% of its hinge on the left valve, the more numerous side present.

Assemblage
This small bone group was assembled from three presently undated contexts to which the bone contents of the trench had been allocated. (001) comprised 31 bone fragments, (002) only had 16 and (003) slightly more at 20. Together they contained an assortment of species.

Sheep were the most numerous having 27 fragments, cattle next with 18 fragments, pig followed with nine, bird with eight, rabbit with three and horse and dog each with one. Oyster fragments numbered 18.

Apart from (002) where sheep and cattle were equally frequent, sheep was the more numerous group in the other two contexts. The cattle fragments slightly increased in number through the contexts from (001) to (003) while the pig fragments moved the other way, fragment numbers decreasing from (001) to (003).

Although the three most numerous species contained some domestic refuse; cattle with its meatier sections of rib (in all contexts but much more frequently in (003)), pig with a solitary limb shaft (003), and sheep with the largest number of meaty shafts (001) (003), a few of the meatier rib sections (001) (003), and a lumbar vertebrae (001) (commonly recognised as a loin lamb chop bone), it was butchery waste which was more dominant.

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Cattle contained large roughly chopped fragments of lumbar and thoracic vertebral fragments (002) while there was one of the latter from sheep in (003). All three species were represented by butchered fragments of the less meaty chopped ribs (all three contexts) as well as the awkward articular ends of shafts or blades (all three contexts), the latter inadvertently suggesting in their absence what people were actually eating.

The presence of the cranial elements, maxillary and mandibular parts of sheep (all three contexts) and cattle (001), as well as the skull fragments of pig (002) and sheep (003), and cattle extremities (002) (003), all normally slaughter waste, raise the possibility that the local butchers of that period undertook more intensive duties towards the preparation of an animal carcass for consumption.

OPS22 also contains an entire cattle metacarpal (003) and similarly that of a horse (002). The metacarpal is a lower leg bone covered in little meat but in a large animal its length, smooth line and strength made it a useful resource in bone working. However, both metacarpals display several small knife nicks normally associated with the skinning of an animal. The length of a complete fused metacarpal can be used in established equations to calculate an estimate of the withers heights of a bone’s owner.

The greater length of the (003) cattle metacarpal (von den Driesch) is 19.04cm which if multiplied by 6.03, a multiplier introduced by Matolcsi (1970), which is not reliant on gender distinction, produced an estimated withers height for the animal of 1.15m. Comparing this figure, as (003) is presently undated, with today’s average withers height of between 1.37-1.5 for Angus or Holstein Friesian cattle, suggests that the (003) animal was quite small.

The maximum lateral length, 22.14cm, of the horse metacarpal (von den Driesch) multiplied by 6.41 (the factor following Kiesewalter (1888) and described by Chroszcz et al. (2014)) gives an estimate of withers height as 142cm or 14hands. This short estimated withers height places the animal near the borderline territory between a large pony and a small horse, but just misses the 14.3 hands high needed to be classified as a small horse.

The eight bird bones recovered came only from (001). Apart from any of the myriad reasons why bird bones did not land up in the earth of a particular back yard, a bird needs to have light bones to be able to fly. They are thus more fragile and vulnerable to destruction than the bones of other animals. Following the butchery evidence below, (001) may be the latest in time of the three contexts, another possible reason why bird was not found in the other contexts.

The bird fragments consisted of the bones of seven domestic fowl and one wood pigeon. Domestic fowl is represented by the classic food bones, the upper thigh bone and the bones of the meatier part of the wing, suggesting domestic refuse. Judging from the numbers of the same bones of the same side they would represent two birds.

The wood pigeon’s ulna, one of the bones from the meatier part of the wing, could have been in the yard as a consequence of a natural event. However, as it occurs in association with the group of domestic fowl bones and a chopped rabbit bone, mentioned below, it may suggest the exploitation at that time of local fauna in the sourcing of food.

A few rabbit bones, two pelves and a chopped thigh bone, were present in (001) and (002). The thigh bone also displays a small knife nick at the distal end, often the result of skinning. The bones’ presence supports the suggestion that local animals were used for food and, depending on the dates to be established for these contexts, practices continuing over some time.

Oyster shells appear in (001) and (002), predominantly in (002). Although breakage has occurred in (002) there were six left hand, the rounder side, remnants with more than 50% of their hinges present in the group which indicate that there were at least 6 oysters in the group.

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Several of the valves exhibited marks suggestive of interference at the side or near the hinge area but the fragmentation is too extensive to be certain.

The hinge of the oyster shell in (001) appears to be that of a right valve, the shallower side. Interference near the hinge and a few knife marks visible on the interior surface of the shell suggest that it had been used for food.

Condition
Eighty five percent of the bone group was in average condition displaying only moderate erosion after their spell in the ground. Damage to the bone by the gnawing of rats or dogs, surface splitting, flaking or thinning contributed in varying degrees to a poor or severe state in the condition of the remaining 15%.

Rat or dog gnawing was observed in 21% of the bone assemblage but rat gnawing unusually only occurred in (001) while dog gnawing appeared equally only in (002) and (003). It may be that (002) and (003) came from a different time and source and had been buried more quickly than (001).

The surface of the majority of the oysters, largely found in (002), was extremely friable. The right valve of the more robust less fragmented but only oyster fragment in (001) displayed a single hole on the exterior of its valve made by a sponge or predatory marine gastropod trying to attach to its shell.

Charring
There was no evidence of charring on any of the fragments.

Butchery
Fifty four percent of the bone fragments showed signs of butchery. This amount rises to 69% if the horse, dog and bird bones were removed from the equation as customarily they are not butchered, as they are not in this assemblage.

The rates of butchery increase in OPS22 as the contexts numbers move from (001) to (003) but the greatest difference between the contexts is that it is only in (001) that saw marks appear. Sawing as a method of butchery only became a common practice in the 19th century suggesting a possible more recent date for (001) than the other two contexts.

The crumbly and fragmented condition of the oyster fragments in (002) obscured any marks though there may have been some possible interference at the sides or near the hinges. Interference near the hinge area of the sturdier oyster fragment in (001) was more visible, as were the few knife marks on its interior.

Age Evidence
There is some evidence of a number of young animals in this assemblage.

Birds will display their youth by having long bones with soft ends which have not yet hardened. In OPS22, many of the bones of domestic fowl which have complete endings are soft, indicating immature birds.

There are a group of young animals in OPS22, mainly sheep and pigs, whose full growth had not been completed before death so the ends of their limb bones had not yet attached to their shafts and hardened. The general age of an animal at which this fusion for each bone occurs is known, which helps to furnish an approximate age at death should the animal die before a bone’s fusion is achieved.

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In (001) there are four, two pigs and two sheep, whose unfused shaft ends of bones indicate that all these animals were less than 3.5 years old when they had been butchered. Additionally the unfused end of another young pig bone showed it was slaughtered at less than one year, while in (003) a young pig’s unfused shaft end marked its death at around two years old.

In (002) there is a mandible of a young sheep whose tooth eruption and wear point to its slaughter at around six months old.

There are no cattle teeth in OPS22 to assess age by means of the stage of tooth eruption or patterns of tooth wear. Additionally the cattle bones in the group which are fused are those which complete the fusion process early in life, around one or two years, leaving too great an age range to be useful. At the other end of the spectrum there is a chopped unfused thoracic vertebra which fuses between 7 and 9 years.

However, there is one cattle bone fragment from (002), in two pieces, whose proximal articular end is in the process of firmly attaching to its shaft but hasn’t fully completed it as the line between the shaft and the attaching epiphysis is still visible. The age for the fusion of the proximal end of this bone, the humerus, is thought to be around 3.5 to 4 years old, placing the age of this animal at death at around the 4 year mark, an age at which the animal would have achieved its full growth.

Barring illness or accident, dairy or draught cattle have a longer lifespan than 4 years, which points to this animal in (002) having been raised for meat production as were the above other young sheep and pigs from (001), (002) and (003).

There are also a few cases of disposal, for no apparent reason, of the very young who had not been involved in the preparation and supply of meat. Single limb bones of a neonatal dog and pig, and that of a slightly older sheep appeared in (001) and (002).

Conclusion
The anatomical parts recovered suggest that the assemblage has been derived from a variety of activities. That the fragments have been disposed of in the same area suggests the proximal nature of these different sources.

(001) is notable as it is more numerous than the other contexts, containing not only the largest amount of pig fragments in the group but also the largest presence of young animals and birds in the assemblage. It is also the only context which displays sawn bone and rat gnawing.
Domestic refuse appears to be represented by the partial remains of at least six oysters, the meatier parts of the rabbit, domestic fowl and cattle ribs, and the occasional limb bone of sheep and pig.

Butchery waste is more common, consisting of sheep, cattle and pig’s unwanted awkward articular ends of long bones, pelves, less meaty parts of ribs and the vertebral fragments of the two most numerous species. The youth of the animals slaughtered enhances the quality of the meat supplied which in turn suggests the prosperity of the nearby community or part thereof.
Cranial elements from cattle, sheep and pig, including mandibular, maxillary and occipital skull fragments and extremities suggest slaughter waste or possibly the earlier involvement of the butcher at that time in the processing of animal carcasses for consumption.

A semi circular cut on a cattle humerus from (002) implies nearby casual bone working activity. Knife nicks on a rabbit’s femur (001) and on cattle (003) and horse (002) metacarpals suggest the local skinning of animals.

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An intact horse lower leg bone from (002) and one from cattle in (003), as well as unfused limb bones of a neonatal puppy (001) and piglet and a slightly older sheep (002) possibly reflect the yard’s proximity to a well used road and might suggest it was a recognised place for the disposal of unwanted animal bone.

When dating is available and assigned to contexts (001) to (003), the information uncovered by the animal bone assemblage will contribute to a greater understanding of High Barnet’s local patterns of meat supply and consumption in their time frame. As OPS22’s bone group is not large, its value will be amplified with the excavation of further nearby sites.

Bibliography

‘Aberdeen Angus Cattle’, https://attwellfarmpark.co.uk/explore/animals/aberdeen-angus-cattle.. Accessed 28/07/22.

Boessneck. 1969, ‘Osteological differences between sheep (Ovis aries Linne) and goat
(Capra hircusLinne)’, in Brothwell, D. and Higgs, E.S. (eds.), Science in Archaeology, 2nd edn, London: Thames & Hudson.

Chroszcz, A. & Janeczek, M. & Pasicka, E. & Kleckowska-Nawrot, J. 2014, ‘Height at the withers estimation in horses based on the internal dimension of cranial cavity’, Folia morphologica, 73, 143-148. 10.5603/FM.2014.0021.

Cohen, A. & Serjeantson, D. 1996, A Manual for the Identification of Bird Bones from Archaeological Sites, London: Archetype.

Driesch, A. von den 1976, A Guide to the Measurement of Animal Bones from Archaeological Sites, Massachusetts: Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology Bull. 1.

Grant, A. 1982, ‘The use of tooth as a guide to the age of domestic animals’, in Wilson,
B., Greigson, C. & Payne, S. (eds) 1982, Aging and Sexing Animal Bones from Archaeological Sites, Oxford: BAR Brit. Ser. 109.

‘Holstein Friesian Cattle Dimensions & Drawings’, Accessed 28/07/22. https://www.dimensions.com/element/holstein-friesian-cattle.

Matolcsi, J. 1970, ‘Historische Erforschung der Kopergrosse des Rindes augrund von
ungarischem Knochenmaterial; Zeitschrift fur Tierzuchtung und
Zuchtungsbiologie, 87, 89-137

‘Measuring the Height & Weight of Horses’, https://allpony.com/learn/measure-horses/. Accessed 09/08/22.

Payne, S. 1973, ‘Kill-off patterns in sheep and goats: the mandibles from Asvan Kale’, Anatolian Stud. 23, 281-303.

Schmid, E. 1972, An Atlas of Animal Bones for the Prehistorians, Archaeologists and Quaternary Geologists, Amsterdam: Elsevier.

Winder, J.M., 2011, Oyster Shells from Archaeological Sites: a brief illustrated guide to basic processing, 23-24, 28.

natureinfocus.files.wordpress.com/2019/10/oystershellmethodsmanualversion1.pdf 23rdJuly2022.

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Other Societies’ Events Eric Morgan

Not all societies and other organisations have returned to pre-Covid conditions. Please check with them before attending events.

Sunday 6th August. Eclectic Tours. NW London Series. – Colindale and its role in early Aviation. Colindale or Hendon as it was known back then, was synonymous with flying. Learn about early aviation and other factories and important institutions of the area. For tour info. and to book please go to Eclectic Tours – Walking Tours – London, England (eclectic-tours.com).

Saturday 19th August. Barnet Physic Well. Cnr. Well Approach/Pepy’s Cres.,Barnet, EN5 3DY. Open Day.

Also Sunday 27th August. Exploring Kingsbury and Places we call Home. In the 1930’s Kingsbury developed as part of Metroland , while typical of many suburbs with mock-Tudor houses, Kingsbury holds some surprises. For tour info. and to book please go to Eclectic Tours – Walking Tours – London, England (eclectic-tours.com).

Sunday 3rd September, 11am-5pm. Angel Canal Festival. Regent’s Canal, City Road Basin ,Islington,N1 8GJ. Lots of stalls including London Canal Museum. Also boat trips, craft stalls, food and live music. For more info, please visit www.canalrivertrust/events.

Wednesday 6th-Sunday to 17th September. Open House London. Free entry to London’s best buildings not normally always open to the public. For full detail. please visit https://open-city.org.uk

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Sunday 10th September. Avenue House. The Private World of Spike Milligan. An opportunity to take a look at Spike’s unseen archive guided by his daughter Jane Miliigan. Small groups. Multiple slots. Booking essential. Tickets £10. Please visit www.stephenshouseandgardens.com.

Monday 11th September, 3pm.Barnet Museum and Local History Society.St. John the Baptist Church, Chipping Barnet, corner of High St./Wood St., Barnet, EN5 4BW. A Walk in the Park-London’s Green Treasures. Talk by John Lynch. Please visit www.barnetmuseum.co.uk.

Friday 15th September, 7.30pm. Enfield Archaeological Society, Jubilee Hall, 2, Parsonage Lane, Enfield, EN2 0AJ. London’s Waterfront, 1666-1800 and London’s Involvement with Slavery. Talk by John Scofield .Please visit www.enfarchsoc.org for further details.

Saturday 16th September 10am – 4pm. HADAS OPEN DAY at Avenue House. See Page 2 of this newsletter.

Sunday 17th September, 12-5pm . Queens Park Festival. Off Chevening Road or Harvist Road.,NW6. Lots of stalls incl.Willesden Local History.

Wednesday 20th September, 7.30pm. Willesden Local History Society. St.Mary’s Church Hall, bottom of Neasden Lane, NW10 2TS (round corner from Magistrates’ Court). Shopping in Kilburn High Road. Talk. May also be on zoom. If not a member, buy a ticket (£3). For details .please visit www.willesden-local-history.co.uk.

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Friday 22nd September,7pm. COLAS. St.Olave’s Church, Hart Street , EC3R 7NB. Lord Elgin and the Parthenon sculptures at the British Museum. Speaker TBA. Hopefully also on zoom.Please book via Eventbrite. Visit www.colas.org.uk. HADAS may send out the link details to its members to book.

Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th September. Clitterhouse Farm Project. 10th Anniversary Weekend. 102,Clitterhouse Crescent,NW2 1DN. For details, please e-mail paulette@clitterhouse.com or visit www.ouryard.org.

Wednesday 27ih September, 7.45pm. Friern Barnet and District Local History Society. North Middx. Golf Club, The Manor House, Friern Barnet Lane, N20 ONL. Alexandra Palace Theatre. Talk by Nigel Wilmott. Please visit www.friernbarnethistory.org.uk and click on programme,or phone 020 8368 8314 for up-to-date details. (David Berguer, Chair). Non-members £2. Bar available.

Thursday 28th September, 7.30pm. Finchley Society. Drawing Room, Avenue, House, 17,East End Rd.,N3 3QE. Amy,wonderful Amy. Talk by David Keen (RAF Mus.) Will tell the life story of Amy Johnson and make use of the magic lantern slides and script which she used during fund-raising tours following her pioneering solo Australia flight. For further details, please visit www.finchleysociety.org.uk. Non-members £2 at the door. Refreshments in interval.

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With many thanks to this month’s contributors: Geraldine Missig. Eric Morgan, Janet Mortimer, Jim Nelhams
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Hendon and District Archaeological Society

Chairman Don Cooper, 59, Potters Road, Barnet EN5 5HS (020 8440 4350)
e-mail: chairman@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Secretary Janet Mortimer, 34, Cloister Road, Childs Hill, London NW2 2NP
(07449 978121) e-mail: secretary@hadas.org.uk

Hon. Treasurer Roger Chapman, 50, Summerlee Avenue, London N2 9QP
(07855 304488) e-mail: treasurer@hadas.org.uk

Membership Secretary Vacancy

While we have no Membership Secretary

for the present, please address any change of member addresses or other miscellaneous correspondence to:

HADAS, c/o Avenue House, 17 East End Road, Finchley, London N3 3QE


Website at: www.hadas.org.uk – join the HADAS email discussion group via the website.


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