Blandford Museum Archaeology Group

The Archaeology group was formed to provide a community focus for those interested in archaeology in the Blandford area. The main aim of the Group is to raise awareness of archaeology in the local and wider areas through lectures, discussions, circulars and local field visits and investigations.

The Group is open to all members of Blandford Museum, and we are always delighted to welcome new members. For more information, please contact Edrys Lupprian at [email protected]

Activities of the Group

We normally hold lectures from September to May on the third Thursday of the month at 7.30pm at the Tabernacle. Everyone is welcome! Admission is £3 for those who are not members of the Museum, and a donation is appreciated from members.

Around Christmas we hold our annual fund-raising quiz. Media star and archaeologist Julian Richards is our quiz master who has to manage a lively evening with a firm hand.

Here is the scheduled programme for 2021-22:

16th Sept 2021Exciting new discoveries in Peru before the IncaTim Brown
21st Oct 2021Roman Aqueduct in DorchesterHarry Manley, Bournemouth University
18th Nov 2021The Long Bow & the Mary RoseAbigail Parkes, Southampton University
16th Dec 2021Social event
20th Jan 2022Mycenaen HarboursMax MacDonald, Southampton University
17th Feb 2022Schooners: design and people in 18th CenturyJack Pink,
Southampton University
17th March 2022The Roman Town House: Dorchester’s hidden gem.Steve Wallis, Dorset County Archaeologist
21st April 2022Iron Age excavation at BlandfordDan Carter/Pete Cox,
AC Archaeology
19th May 2022Underfloor excavations at Avebury ManorBriony Clifton,
Avebury National Trust
June 2022Visit : Bournemouth University Dig?

Visits to Archaeological Sites

Visit to Down Farm, Wimborne St Giles. Excavation of the cursus ditch, June 2019

Each June we try to organise a trip to a local archaeological site. We have been to Martin Green’s amazing museum and had a guided tour of different archaeological finds on Down farm in Wimborne St Giles. Visits have also taken place to the Bournemouth University Summer Dig sites.





Group activities in 2020-21

Although meetings were disrupted by the Covid19 pandemic, we were able to join our sister groups of Shaftesbury District Archaeology Group and East Dorset Antiquarian Society for their monthly meetings via Zoom.

Archaeological Projects

In the summer months we try to join in or organise a local archaeological project but again plans for 2020 were curtailed by the Covid19 restrictions.

Fieldwalking at Durweston, February 2020

Fieldwalking at Durweston, February 2020

We were able to organise a short field walking project at Shepherds’ Corner  farm in Durweston, in February 2020, many thanks to George Hosford and Dougal Hosford for permission to walk their field. We discovered significant accumulations of burnt flint along with some Bronze Age flint scrapers, suggesting a well used activity site from that era. Analysis of the finds is being worked on and results will be shared with the group.

It is hoped we can organise a number of field walking projects in the Blandford area looking for prehistoric activity to build a picture of how the land was used before the Romans came.



Tarrant Launceston Project

A feature was identified through a crop mark at Tarrant Launceston that seemed to be a circular enclosure with an interrupted ditch. Geophysics by Dave Stewart confirmed the interrupted nature of the ditch which suggested an Early Neolithic causewayed enclosure. The Archaeology Group was planning to field walk part of the enclosure but in March 2021, it was discovered that Wessex Water were putting a small pipeline through the feature. Due to Covid restrictions only a few members of the group were able to carry out a limited excavation. The finds from the excavation are still being analysed but suggest the feature is, indeed, an Early Neolithic causewayed enclosure.  We are hoping that radiocarbon dating will confirm the Early Neolithic date. We hope there will be opportunities for members of the BMAG to carry out more fieldwork on the site in the future.

Committee and Membership, Autumn 2021

Chairman: John Earley

Secretary: Edrys Lupprian

Treasurer: Gisela Pauley

Members: Dave Stewart, Rex Badgley, Gerald Killingworth.