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Archaeological investigation

Dr Nicola Bannister, Field Archaeologist was contacted in the summer of 2008 with regard to working with the Friends of Old Park Wood. She expressed an early interest in the opportunity to both develop the awareness of owners and also to visit Old Park Wood. The initial meeting with owners took place at the County Records Office at Sessions House in Maidstone on Saturday 22nd November, when the group, led by Dr Bannister, spent the morning learning how to access historical documents and research the history of Old Park Wood using old maps and other archive material. The session was attended by 10 owners representing 5 woods (Silver, Crow, Blue Barn, Corsican, and Limberlost). For all those present, using historical materials in this way was a new experience.

This initial session was followed up on Saturday 24th January at the Vine Public House in Goudhurst. Dr Bannister gave a presentation to the group covering the main archaeological features often to be found in woodland and how to identify them.  The session was also an opportunity for the group to ask questions and learn about best practice in preserving woodland archaeology.  Twelve owners attended.

After lunch Dr Bannister led a two hour walk through Old Park Wood, helping those present to spot and identify some of the features discussed in the morning session. Several woodbanks and ditches were noted and in one area there were clear signs of an early banked enclosure: these were plotted on sketch maps for a fuller report by Dr. Bannister. The day was very well received by all those taking part.

The next phase of this project is for owners to investigate their own woodland areas more closely, supported by Dr Bannister; the date arranged for this is 25th April 2009, the earliest date she could be available. This day will take the form of individual consultancy with owners. All the information gathered will be collected together to form a record at both County and National levels, and for the Old Park Wood website.

Dr. Nicola Bannister Woodland Archaeology Archive Training at the Centre for Kentish Studies: day @ 220 = 110

Dr. Nicola Bannister - Woodland Archaeology Training at Old Park Wood: 2 days  @ 220 = 440

The Vine PH: use of room and lunch for 11 participants = 88.55






Old Park Wood owners with Dr. Nicola Bannister on a field walk, looking at some of the archaeological features present in Old Park Wood


  Pointing out different archaeological features of Old Park Wood
Dr. Nicola Bannister explains a particular feature to some of the woodland owners and their families, out surveying Old Park Wood   Dr. Nicola Bannister points out an ancient hornbeam pollard marking an old road through the edge of Old Park Wood


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