Public meeting to report on churchyard dig findings

Kidderminster Shuttle: Public meeting to report on churchyard dig findings Public meeting to report on churchyard dig findings

A PUBLIC meeting is to be held to report on the findings of the archaeological churchyard dig in Kidderminster.

The dig, funded by £50,000 from the Heritage Lottery Fund, was organised by the Kidderminster Civic Society, who had hoped to find the missing Saxon monastery thought to have once stood in Kidderminster.

Although no evidence of a structure was found in St Mary's churchyard last September, analysis of all the findings has been carried out and will be presented at the meeting on Friday, January 31 at 7.30pm in St Mary’s chantry.

More than 100 volunteers took part in the community project and found items ranging from prehistoric times, through the medieval period to the present day.

Nigel Gilbert, leader of the Historic Kidderminster project, said: "The findings are some compensation for not finding any building buried in the churchyard.

“They will add to our understanding of the history of the town and its changing landscape. I am looking forward to hearing whether the pottery findings can be linked to the works which stood nearby in the late 18th century.”

A radar survey of the churchyard in 2006 had apparently revealed a structure lying hidden underground in the churchyard.

Mr Gilbert added: "I’m afraid those solid radar images are now being interpreted simply as solid pristine bedrock sand. Despite this disappointment, St Mary’s remains a possible site for the Saxon minster.”

The archaeologist’s report also contains information about the management of the churchyard during the past two centuries.

Richard Bradley is expected to present at the report for Worcestershire Archaeology and Mr Gilbert will speak about the implications for future research into the Saxon minster.

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