Archaeology festival to take place in Northumberland next year

A new archaeology festival, announced on Sunday by Sir Tony Robinson, will be taking place in Northumberland next year.

Tuesday, 5th December 2017, 8:27 am
Updated Tuesday, 12th December 2017, 12:38 am
Mick Aston and Tony Robinson. Picture by Steve Shearn

DigVentures, the crowdfunding archaeological social enterprise, has revealed that the inaugural DigNation will take place on Holy Island in September 2018.

It features two days of professional excavations alongside lectures and other activities celebrating the legacy of archaeologist and Time Team presenter Professor Mick Aston.

His friend and co-host, Sir Tony Robinson, has helped to create the festival, which has been inspired by Mick’s lifelong mission to increase public understanding of archaeology and enable wider participation in the field.

Featuring high-profile experts, it will focus on the four main areas of Mick’s expertise – monastic archaeology, medieval settlements, landscape archaeology, and public archaeology and science.

In addition to the talks programme and dig, there will be a lab full of activities tailored for families and a Saturday evening keynote lecture by Tony Robinson.

DigVentures has also extended the reach of the festival; online audiences will be invited to take part through social media, live streaming and specially curated podcasts and video footage, with the support of festival media partner Dan Snow and the History Hit channel.

Visit Tony Robinson said: “Mick was passionate about archaeology and in getting new audiences hooked on the excitement of a dig, whether by getting their hands dirty in a trench or watching discoveries unfold from the comfort of their own sofa.

“DigVenture’s platform allows audiences from around the world to be part of the action at DigNation in ways that wouldn’t have been possible even a few years ago and Mick would have loved that.”

Lisa Westcott Wilkins, managing director of DigVentures, added: “‘Mick understood more than anyone that uncovering the past was something that everyone could get involved with, and enjoy.”