Festival of Archaeology at Corfe Castle

Children dressed as medieval knight's having a play sword fight

Join us for the UK’s biggest annual celebration of archaeology. On Sunday 31 July, discover what life would have been like inside the castle walls, try your hand at historic crafts and see artefacts ranging from the Neolithic period to the Iron Age.

The National Trust is proud to support the Council for British Archaeology’s Festival of Archaeology which celebrates the fun and creativity that can be had with archaeology, and encourages people to explore and connect with the human stories that can be found throughout our natural and historic places. At Corfe Castle, we will be hosting the final day of this national event on Sunday 31 July, with free admission, family activities, talks and hands on experiences. Find out more about things to see and do below.

Family fun

Family watching a historic craft demonstration at Corfe Castle.

Try your hand at historic crafts including pottery and mosaic making, get creative with cave painting and have go at an archaeological dig.

Child posing for a photo in medieval knight's costume

Follow the 'Castle the King Built' trail to learn more about the people who lived at Corfe Castle and find out about their real-life roles, from Masons and Minstrels to Servants and Kings.

Demonstrations and exhibitions

Volunteer demonstrating historic craft skills

Watch live displays and join history talks to learn about different craft skills including Bronze Age metal casting, ancient pottery making and weaving.

A collection of historic artefacts found at Corfe Castle

Get hands on with artefacts ranging from the Neolithic period to the Iron Age.

Visitors exploring the ruins at Corfe Castle

Visit the photographic exhibition to look back on 40 years of National Trust care and conservation at Corfe Castle. The exhibition explores key highlights from the first archaeological excavations, with photos documenting key discoveries from the digs.

Eating and shopping

" Archaeology is all about uncovering stories of people at our places, and sharing these stories to help people connect to the environments around them. As archaeologists we unearth hidden clues buried just beneath our feet, and use features hidden in plain sight such as earthworks, buildings and ruins to understand how people before us lived, worked and played in the landscape."
- Martin Papworth, National Trust Archaeologist