Archaeologist's blog

There are 20 archaeologists working for the National Trust across England, Wales and Northern Ireland caring for our monuments, houses, collections, gardens and landscapes.  Learn more about their discoveries first-hand. 

This blog is written by National Trust archaeologists, Archaeology and heritage specialists National Trust archaeologists Archaeology and heritage specialists
Winter sunrise at Coldrum Neolithic Long Barrow, Kent

Behind the scenes of excavations, surveys and building projects, getting up close to artefacts and collections research, and sharing archaeological and historical perspectives. Follow the National Trust Archaeologist’s blog to hear the latest news, and stories from our experts, volunteers and partners.

Latest posts

20 Jul 2021

Wessex hillforts and habitats: where archaeology meets nature

Published: 20 July 2021

The National Trust cares for nearly 300 hillforts across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In south west England, a special partnership with Historic England is helping everyone connect with the archaeology, beauty and nature of 13 of our extraordinary Wessex hillforts. In this blog, Project Manager Marie McLeish tells us more about how this partnership is enabling both organisations to ...

Continue reading... 

14 Jul 2021

How we're celebrating the Festival of Archaeology 2021

Published: 14 July 2021

The National Trust is taking part in the Festival of Archaeology 2021; the UK’s biggest annual celebration of archaeology. In this blog, some of the archaeology team talk about the events they are organising to celebrate the festival.

Continue reading... 

28 Jun 2021

Lidar in lockdown: rediscovering a lost landscape at Calke Abbey, Derbyshire

Published: 28 June 2021

It was a Roman road that first led to Calke Abbey, or more precisely, three possible Roman roads. Volunteers Paula Whirrity and Adrian Farnsworth have been exploring the lost Roman routes of Derbyshire and Staffordshire together for 20 years, and these three possible roads just happened to converge on the Calke estate. Their investigations to find out more about the area led to discoveries of a...

Continue reading... 

14 Jun 2021

Runnymede Explored: geophysics at Ankerwycke

Published: 14 June 2021

Thanks to funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, for the Runnymede Explored project, the National Trust is transforming the way people experience the Runnymede site in Surrey. Visitors will be able to enjoy improved access to the historic site and surrounding areas, with newly-created interpretation and engagement with the local community at Runnymede and Ankerwycke. A key aspect to ...

Continue reading... 

1 Jun 2021

Stories from the stones: researching graffiti at Nymans

Published: 1 June 2021

The volunteer graffiti team at Nymans in West Sussex was formed in October 2019 to undertake further research on the historic inscriptions found in the woodlands on the estate. In this blog, team member Steve Greenfield discusses the latest stage of the project, which involves identifying and learning more about those who have left their mark on the rocks.

Continue reading... 

20 May 2021

Under the floorboards: a message in a bottle at Knole in Kent

Published: 20 May 2021

The £20 million 'Inspired by Knole' project included a five-day training course each year from 2014 to 2018 (‘Archaeology Unwrapped’), led by archaeologist Nathalie Cohen. This included training from specialists in graffiti recording and interpretation, landscape archaeology, geophysics, digital techniques, standing building recording, finds identification and cataloguing, plus an introduction ...

Continue reading... 

28 Apr 2021

Operation Pill Box: conserving Second World War archaeology in Wales

Published: 28 April 2021

Kathy Laws is one of two archaeologists working for the National Trust in Wales. In this blog, she shares the work undertaken to record, conserve and interpret two Second World War pillboxes between Bethesda and Capel Curig in Snowdonia.

Continue reading... 

13 Apr 2021

All quiet on the National Trust estate: the impact of past conflicts

Published: 13 April 2021

Ian Barnes is the National Trust’s Senior National Archaeologist. He previously worked for the Ministry of Defence in numerous different roles including as the Archaeologist for Salisbury Plain and as the Head of Historic Environment. In this article, he reflects on the evidence of conflict in the landscape, both ancient and modern.

Continue reading... 

18 Mar 2021

Written in stone: mapping Nymans' historic graffiti

Published: 18 March 2021

In this blog, Tom Dommett discusses recent work undertaken at Nymans in West Sussex to record historic graffiti inscribed on the rocks in the woodlands on the estate, some of which dates back hundreds of years. Having previously worked as an Archaeologist and a Consultancy Manager in London and the South-East, Tom is now the National Trust’s Head of Historic Environment.

Continue reading... 

24 Feb 2021

Fountains Abbey's archaeology: past, present and future

Published: 24 February 2021

Mark Newman is one of our archaeologists, based in the North of England. In this blog, Mark looks back at his work with the National Trust, and in particular, at the World Heritage Site at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden in North Yorkshire. Discover the past, present and what the future of Fountains Abbey holds, as Mark takes us on a journey through his discoveries from ancient ...

Continue reading...