Carham 1018 project wins lottery funds

A view over the River Tweed towards Carham.
A view over the River Tweed towards Carham.

A grant of nearly £50,000 has been secured to help mark the millennial anniversary of the Battle of Carham.

The 1018 conflict played a pivotal role in setting the border between England and Scotland along the River Tweed.

The £47,200 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund has been won by the Battlefields Trust North East and Borders Branch.

It will work alongside the Carham 1018 Society and volunteers from the local community on a project titled Carham 1018 – The Battle, the Border and the Dawn of Two Nations.

The project will enable and help local residents of all ages to research the battle and events leading to the conflict and how Carham 1018 was a defining point in fixing the border.

While the village is little more than a few houses and a farm steading today, its place in history is vitally important.

It was here, 1,000 years ago, that the ancient Kingdom of Northumbria was split when a Northumbrian army was defeated by joint force under the command of Malcolm II, King of Scots, and Owen of Strathclyde. The northern border of Northumbria shifted south from the Firth of Forth to the Tweed, where it has remained, largely unchanged for a millennium.

A major event will be a living history and re-enactment event on July 7 to 8, 2018. This will be held on the south bank of the Tweed, the site of the battle, and will portray aspects of both domestic and military early medieval life.

Carham will be promoted over a wide range of media, including a new website, an interactive online history course, Facebook and a teacher’s information pack produced for use in schools. Data will also be transmitted by wifi from new interpretation boards.

Following the success of the Flodden World’s Smallest Visitor Centre, a micro-museum will be set up in the disused phone box at Carham.

More traditional methods of telling the Border story will include leaflets, a book and a new film/DVD. Public events will include a number of mini conferences with invited guests who will speak on relevant topics.

Saint Cuthbert’s link to Carham will also be fully investigated.

Local resident Clive Hallam-Baker said: “We are thrilled to have received the support of the Heritage Lottery Fund and we will now work to explore and research our intriguing history and local heritage and tell how the Border story started in 1018 at Carham.”

Ivor Crowther, head of Heritage Lottery Fund North East, said: “We’re delighted to support this project which will mark the millennial anniversary of the battle which transformed Northumbria and the Borders. Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players, people of all ages will journey back in time to recreate one of our most defining battles, discover an incredible story at a museum in a phone box and put Carham’s place in history firmly on the map.”