First up, as from 6.30pm, was the Finds Viewing. In fact, some people were so keen, that they arrived well before the advertised time, and the finds were still being unpacked! Sandra and Kurt fielded lots of questions, and even got to view some pottery brought in by a local collector.
By 7pm, when the talks were about to begin, the Old Laundry at Muncaster Castle was pretty much packed! There were new faces, as well veterans from 2013.
IntroductionsWhen everyone was settled, an introduction was given by Peter Frost-Pennington of Muncaster Castle who is the managing director of the land the excavations are on. He was looking forward to hearing about the results and the forthcoming season.
The various versions of the Romans in Ravenglass film can be found here.
After this, Kurt spoke about the results of last year's dig, which included an overview of the trench results (see Trench 1, Trench 2 and Trench 3 reports), and also the extensive Geophyscial survey. For 2014 Kurt told us about new Trench 4 to be used for schools and open days, giving the opportunity for schools (when they visit with Lisa) and visitors (on the Open Days) to have a go at digging. In addition, there are plans to have volunteer placements on site and helping on finds. These are for people with some experience who will have the opportunity to go into either site or finds work more deeply and have more responsibility. They will have longer stretches of time doing site or finds work. Further details will appear here and on the Lake District website soon.
The site will be open from Wednesday to Sunday, a change from the previous year. Sunday will allow those who work elsewhere during the week to have a choice of days to come to site, as well as allowing more weekend visitors to look round the excavations.
Lisa then told the audience about the Outreach programme, which allowed several local schools to have a fun time learning about the Romans and digging in the classroom as well as on site. In 2014 there will be three more site Open Days on the 12th, 13th and 27th September, as well as more schools visiting, along with the local Young Archaeologists' Club and Lake District Young Rangers.
here. The Romans in Ravenglass project finds will also be on display at the Living History Festival 24th-25th August at Muncaster Castle, and volunteers are needed for this event.
The signing up forms for the 2014 season can be found on the Lake District's Roman in Ravenglass webpage.
After a short session of questions, the evening ended with people enthused and ready for the next season of excavations in September!