|SITEZINE: HOLY ISLAND'S E-MAIL MAGAZINE
- A bit from me...
- Holy Island Parish Council
- Crossman Hall
- Lindisfarne Castle
- Swallow bounce back after early disasters
- Archaeology- newsletter
- Peregrini Lindisfarne landscape partnership
- Results of Lindisfarne Community
Archaeology on the Heugh
- AONB Partnership
- News from Ford & Etal
- From the Vicarage
- You are responsible
- Pause for thought
St. Mary's Church
'Dressed for an August Wedding'
|A BIT FROM ME
Dear *|MMERGE3|* ,
After our short summer break, welcome to our latest issue of 'SitEzine'.
It appears that visitor numbers have risen
significantly this year with our main car park being filled
throughout the July/August period. Regretfully, if you came to see
us on Tuesday afternoon (29th August) you might have noticed that
there was the restricted entry to the churchyard whilst the
community joined together in St. Mary's to bid farewell to a great
lady. As well as a respected and much-loved member of our community
we are so grateful for the many ways in which Lady
Crossman family have supported Holy Island over the years. She will be sadly missed.
Staying with our parish church, where work
on the chancel is now complete, this has been a very busy summer
with tens of thousands of pilgrims and visitors interrupted
on occasion by a local wedding
and a couple of baptisms. One of these was for 'George' great-grandson of Jenny and the
late and well-remembered Eddie Douglas who
recorded the highest annual collection towards the 'Northern Air Ambulance'.
For 2017 archaeological excavations on the Heugh and Sanctuary Close
are now complete. Included in
this issue are reports from their respective lead-archaeologists as
well as from David Suggett from the 'Peregrini Lindisfarne Landscape Partnership'.
In addition to our regular contributors, also included are reports from AONB and a poem
by Holy Island resident Andy Raine
which regular users of our island causeway might find topical.
We hope you
enjoy the fruit of our work
and look forward to writing for you again in October.
|HOLY ISLAND PARISH COUNCIL
||Clerk to the Parish Council|
Windsor Cottage, 3 Lewin's Lane, Holy
Island, Berwick-upon-Tweed, TD152SB
Clerk: John A
Bevan Tel: (01289) 389359 firstname.lastname@example.org
The Parish Council has been considering how to manage the Public
Question period during Parish Council Meetings to allow members of
the public to air any concerns they have without prejudicing the
smooth running of the meeting. I have based the following on the
policy laid down in the Holy Island Parish Council Standing Orders
adopted at the Holy Island Parish Council Meeting on Monday May 20th
2013 and on the guidance and legal advice given by the Society of
Local Council Clerks.
It is important to remember that a Parish Council Meeting is not
a general public meeting. It is a meeting of the Parish Council to
discuss items on the formal agenda. Members of the public may only
speak during a specified period set aside for public questions and
statements. Outside this period the public are present as observers
not participants and may only speak if invited to do so by the
The Council's intention is to have a procedure which enables
members of the public to make the best use of the Public Question
time and to be able easily to raise matters of concern to them with
the expectation that the matter will be considered by the Council.
To do this the Councillors and Clerk may need to do some research.
Therefore, if the matter is to be discussed by the Parish Council
and, as far as possible, an informed answer given or a decision
taken at the meeting at which the question is raised, then the Clerk
must be given notice of the question at least 5 clear days before
If a question is asked without due notice then it will be
recorded but cannot be discussed at that meeting. If the question is
solely seeking information then a Councillor or the Clerk will
respond orally or in writing directly to the questioner when an
answer is available. Only questions covering matters which are the
responsibility of the Parish Council can be accepted.
The format of the Public Question time as laid out in the Holy
Island Parish Council Standing Orders and based on the best practice
advised by the Society of Local Council Clerks is as follows:
- All questions must be addressed to the
- Only one person can speak at one time.
- If more than one person wishes to speak
the Chairman shall direct the order of speaking.
- The questioner may speak for no more than
- A maximum of 15 minutes will be allowed for public
While questions can be given directly to the Clerk it is
preferable for them to be discussed with a Parish Councillor first.
They are the elected representatives of the community and are there
to take up matters of concern. The Councillor could then, if
appropriate, raise the matter on behalf of the member of the public
as part of the main agenda. This does not prevent the questioner
also raising the matter during the Public Question time period.
There are some restrictions on the questions that can be
considered. The following are excluded:
- Matters over which the Parish Council has
no authority or influence.
- Where they are in furtherance of a
person's individual circumstances.
- Are about a matter where there is a right
of appeal to the courts, tribunal or government.
- Have been the subject of a decision by the Council in the last
Clerk to Holy Island Parish
There has been an appropriate volume of
concern voiced over the disastrous fire in the Glenfell Tower Block, London where so many lives
were lost and other suffered devastating injuries, as well as those who lost
all of their possessions.
I would like to reassure all users of our new
hall that it is a safe meeting place and meets all fire safety
requirements. When the Hall is used by others their 'risk
assessment' is reviewed. For example, the Trustees, following the Risk
Assessment process, prohibit naked flame(s) albeit lighted candles at a service or a
plumber soldering a joint.
If open flame is required then a 'hot work
permit must be obtained from the Trustees. In addition, deep fat/oil
fryers are not permitted. And I am sure most of you will remember
that we use heat exchange pumps and PV Panels backed up by mains
electricity to provide hot water and heat. As a consequence the Hall fire
risk assessment is low.
The spring/summer has seen the hall used for
a wide range of activities. This has resulted in hard work for a gallant few,
but worthwhile because funds raised from fees have made a substantial contribution towards
the annual running expenses.
The hall has provided a venue for charity
events, music and drama performances, the creative arts and latterly the Coldingham Pop-Up Market - The Pie Lady's
stall is well worth a visit, excellent home baking, and of course access
to the fitness equipment.
The Hall grounds looking spick &
span. Thank you Billy.
As we progress towards the end of August there
has been a successful Coffee Morning in aid of providing fireworks for the
'Bonfire Celebration in November.
But the big test, yes even bigger than
Lindisfarne playing in the Hall will be over the last weekend in
August. It's the Twins "BIG 40 PARTY".
Have a good one Christopher & James and make the event as memorable as your birth. Most of us can
remember which pub they were in when the news of your arrival spread
quickly through the village.
Following this year's exciting excavations, late in September 2017, the Principal Archaeologists from
Durham & Dig-ventures will give a presentation in the Hall highlighting their recent
work on the Island.
For a small village, in recent times, Holy Island appears to have had more than its fair share of Cancer!
Or is it because we are a caring and supportive community that Cancer
is more noticeable here?
A patient has suggested we should try and
help a small local Charity that has been of great support to us and others. Tuesday 24 October is a good tide day to
host a Coffee Morning in the Hall, all proceeds donated to Berwick &
District Cancer Support Group.
This group in particular, helps share the
logistical burden of Families and Patients attending Oncology
Departments in the Borders and North Tyneside Hospitals. Public transport from
North Northumberland & the Borders cannot provide for those required to attend Hospital
for regular treatment appointments.
The Berwick & District Support Group, a
Registered Charity, provides Patients and occasionally their carer's with private car transport to and from Hospital. Travelling time to
and from hospital is a round trip of more than 2 hours depending
on traffic and weather.
The Group is run by Volunteers and financial
help is needed to keep this vital service running. Please help us
organise the fund raising Coffee Morning. All of the usual things are required; Volunteers to make buns and cakes, chutney & jam,
donations for the raffle, tombola and Bric-a -Brac tables, as well as helpers
to man the event.
If you live away from the area and want to support
this fund raising event,. Please sent your donation to B&DCSG c/o Crossman Hall,
Holy Island TD15 2WP.
A big thanks to St V de P camp for the donation of two
splendid table-tennis units, which together with the new Badminton set helps to build
up our fitness area.
Julia Waters, a recently retired Teacher
popped into the hall last week to enquire should anyone be
interested in an introduction to Pilates and Yoga during the later
part of the year. Julia runs several classes in the area and could set-aside time for an Island
class. Please let me know if you are interested and I will pass
on her contact detail.
Following a successful fund raising event earlier this year
the RNLI have expressed an interest in holding another fund raiser in the
hall, more news later.
Finally, what of the 'easement' that will allow
our Contractor to link the freshwater drain to the main sewer. Despite much
pressing - no news!
Hopefully, I didn't forget any items.
David - email@example.com
An appreciation: Lady
Rose Maureen Crossman MBE
It was with deep and heartfelt sadness that the Trustees
learnt of the death of Lady Rose Crossman, long standing Patron of Holy
Island Village Hall Charity.
Some years ago Lady Rose and her late husband
Humphrey became Patrons of The Holy Island Village Hall Charity. Bringing help and support
to the group of hard working volunteers, appointed by the Community and charged
with building a hall.
Lady Rose continued as Patron following the
death of Humphrey in 2011, she gave immense support and encouragement to those involved in the project in that quiet
determined way of hers helping us complete the project and open The Crossman
Hall for the community.
David O', for and on behalf
of the Hall Trustees
The traditional busy period on the island
has coincided with an upsurge of work at the castle, or at
least it feels that way. That is probably because some significant milestones have
been achieved in the last month or so, which were always in our
minds as important steps, and so are major points in the course of the project.
The 'sneck-harl' is a term which is often met
with a quizzical expression even from those familiar with building
practices. Over the last four of five years we have gone over the
approach needed with the external walls of the inhabited castle with
specialists in this field and come to the conclusion that to meet
the needs of the building we needed something in-between a full harl
(such as the north elevation of the castle, installed with no little
controversy in the mid-90s) and bare stonework. The idea is to give
the stonework itself a protective coat like the north wall, but show
off the stone work as per the Country Life magazine photographs from
c.1910. How this will pan out at Lindisfarne is that stones that
stick out from the wall, and even just parts of stones that aren't
quite flush will be visible, while the rest will be protected. The
sneck-harl itself is a mix of lime and sand which is applied in two
stages; the lime mortar is spread on with a trowel and then the sand
is thrown, or 'harled', onto the wet mortar. Gradually as the wall
dries out the excess sand will fall off, and the dark colour of the
wet mixture will fade to a silvery colour. We will then be limewashing the walls for extra protection, and the
colour of the limewash will be sympathetic in colour
to both the crag and the old perimeter walls (which are not
being worked on). This process, which will include the full harl on the
north elevation, will restore the appearance of the castle being at one with
the crag and almost rising up from it - certainly one of Lutyens' intentions here.
So much for the detail; the milestone here is
that recently both the south and east elevations have been
sneck-harled. In order to avoid day-lines (marks where one day's
work ends and dries before the next day's work begins), both
elevations were completed in a single day. In the case of the south
elevation this was a huge task, with 140 square meters of wall being
finished in 13 hours. Over on the east side, the finish was
applied with the added complication of needing to 'show
off' the whin stone draw arches above each window, a significant Lutyens
feature. This along with the clean lines of the window and door quoins
has been beautifully achieved although as with much of the work; it won't
be until this phase of scaffolding comes down that we will get the full picture.
Last issue I talked about the tracery window
repair in the Ship Room and Dining Room. This has progressed in that
a specialist stone conservator has been onsite and taken
measurements, stone has been ordered and dates organised for the
work to be done. We were even able to locate a couple of original
drawings from Lutyens' office showing the tracery design which is a
massive help to the conservator. One of these drawings was held in
the V&A, along with the original triangular design for St
Oswald's, which itself was interesting to see. Another drawing down
there was of one of the stone 'gargoyle' or water spitters at the
Castle, and as I mentioned last month, the new
spitter is now onsite and due to be installed soon. This required
an individual cantilevered scaffold (supported with water tanks) to be installed on the
Upper Battery which can be seen from ground level - it is a
fantastic construction in itself and I just hope I am allowed to go on it!
01289 389244 (press 1, then 1903)
|SWALLOW BOUNCE BACK AFTER EARLY DISASTERS
The sheer resilience of our Swallows in the face of adversity has
proved one of the highlights of the breeding season which is now
drawing to a close.
During April and early May when they were
arriving on the island after their spring migration from South
Africa it was immediately obvious that all was not well. Numbers appearing around the village were much lower than usual, something which
was commented on by many people. I was constantly being asked: "What's
happened to our Swallows?"
The answer seems to have been that they had a
very poor migration northwards, probably because of weather
conditions and that mortality was high. When they arrived the weather wasn't particularly encouraging and for a couple of weeks they seemed
more intent on just finding enough food to stay alive rather than
getting down to breeding.
This meant that we started the breeding
season with fewer than normal pairs. Even around their prime nesting sites at the sheds at the beach far fewer than normal were
present and for the first time I can remember none were breeding
at St Coombs Farm.
The first young hatched during late May and
into June when our island birds faced their bleakest period. Three days of chilling northerly winds and rain in the
final week of the month disastrously reduced the number of flying insects
leading to widespread failure.
On June 29 I checked around some of my more regular nests and found five broods comprising 19 young had
perished. Several people also told me that their young Swallows were also
dead in the nests.
All the casualties were between eight and 12
days old, their period of most rapid growth, when they need to
maximum amount of food. At that stage feathers are just developing
and the youngsters are also very susceptible to the cold. Presumably
adults were spending more time than usual frantically trying to find food leaving the vulnerable youngsters for longer periods without
the warmth of a brooding bird. It was all just too much
for these young birds.
were more advanced and better feathered, survived this short but very difficult
period and successfully fledged.
At that stage I thought we were going to face
an absolutely disastrous breeding season but I failed to take into
account the sheer resilience of Swallows. Within a week of me
clearing out and disposing of handfuls of dead young, I noticed that
the bereaved pairs were again flying in and out and were refurbishing the nests. Fresh clutches of eggs
followed and I'm delighted to say that this time in all cases
the birds were successful.
During August, I spent a lot of time going
around and ringing these replacement broods and, at the time of
writing, most have successfully fledged. When birds fail the first
time around their second clutches they tend to be smaller, generally
with three eggs rather than the four or five. That was generally the case on
the island although one pair in the Long Passage produced a second
brood of five youngsters.
By the end of August with all these late
youngsters on the wing, there seemed to be as many Swallows as ever around the village and the beach. Even though numbers were obviously swelled
by migrating birds pausing to feed, it was nevertheless a complete turnaround
of the early situation.
Although my final calculations have still to
be made, from 30 nests which I was able to closely monitor around
109 chicks successfully fledged. If there was similar success at other nests right across the island - and I've no reason to think
otherwise - it will have been a good season rather than the
disaster I'd originally feared.
It also seems to have been a good year for
our House Martins. I was amazed to discover in early August that
half a dozen pairs had forsaken traditional sites in the village and
had built their nests on the cliffs at Coves Haven.
out there to check on the breeding pairs of Fulmars when I noticed a
dozen or so House Martins feeding along the cliff-top and over the
old quarry. I vaguely wondered why they were feeding so far away from the usual sites
in the village before it dawned on me that they might be
nesting on the cliff.
I returned next day when the tide was down and I was
able to get along under the cliff and quickly located several nests
all with large young.
Cliff nesting by House Martins is now very
rare although at one time before us humans got around to building
houses it must have been normal. One cliff colony further down the coast at Howick faded out in the 1990s and a few pairs still
breed on cliffs north of Berwick. However, such instances haven't been recorded
on the island previously.
It all goes
to prove that there's always something new and surprising in the world
of our island birds.
| ARCHAEOLOGY- NEWSLETTER
||Dr. D.A. Petts |
This has been a busy summer for archaeology on Holy Island. In
addition to the exciting discoveries by the HLF Peregrini team on
the Heugh, the joint Durham University/DigVentures team has also
been working hard to uncover evidence for the early monastery. This
year we focused in an area of Sanctuary Close where we had great
success in 2016. Last year we discovered two fragments of
Anglo-Saxon sculpture and lots of scattered human bone. Radiocarbon
dates from some of this material showed it to be clearly early
medieval in date. Over the winter the bone was analysed and found to
include not only adults but also children and even two babies. This
suggests that we were looking at the badly damaged remains of a
cemetery where lay people were buried rather than monks. If the
Peregrini team found a church, we like to think we found some of the
This year our aim was to find out whether any of the graves
actually survived intact. Pleasingly, after moving a huge amount of
rubble and soil we came down to a layer which contained intact
skeletons. We fully uncovered two skeletons and there are still
clearly other complete burials in the ground. It appears that like
many early medieval graves, deposits of quartz pebbles had adorned
the graves and sometimes the graves were also marked by lines of
stones. The burials will return to Durham for further work and
analysis, but once this is complete, the bodies will return to the
Island and be carefully placed somewhere appropriate. Although
it was the burials that took most of our resources, we did find
other features too. In one corner of our trench we found part of a
simple rectangular building, with crude stone foundations that
probably once supported a wooden superstructure. These were
remarkably similar to Anglo-Saxon buildings found on other early
medieval monastic sites, such as Hartlepool and Whithorn.
Nearby, we found a deposit of animal bones; this included not only
the usual range of farm animals, such as cattle, sheep and pigs, but
also a number of seal bones, suggesting that they were also being
eaten, as well as being exploited for their oil and hides.
We plan to return to the island for another season next September
(2018), but we will be giving a public talk alongside the HLF
Peregrini Archaelogy team in the Crossman Hall on November 15th 7pm
and if anyone would like a copy of our interim report on our 2016
fieldwork please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Finally, we'd like to thank everyone on the island who helped make
our time so wonderful, particularly to Mr Patterson the farmer and
the staff of the various pubs and cafés who kept us fed and
|PEREGRINI LINDISFARNE LANDSCAPE PARTNERSHIP
||David Suggett |
Summer season of community
archaeology has revealed more tantalising insights into Holy
The second Summer season of the Peregrini
Lindisfarne Community Archaeology project on Holy Island has been
successfully concluded with spectacular results.
In addition to the significant and well
publicised discovery of the foundations of a possible early
Anglo-Saxon chapel on the crown of The Heugh, other exciting remains
were uncovered in the vicinity.
To the West of the chapel, close to the
existing war memorial, further investigation was carried out on the
remains of a substantial stone-built platform structure partially
uncovered last year, which has been tentatively identified as the
base of a tower, again possibly of Anglo-Saxon date. Mortared into
the south face of the platform structure, which consisted of a
single course of rough cobbles, the excavators discovered a socketed
stone, thought to be a reused stone cross-base, and an external
surface of small rounded cobbles in the same area. The presence of a
cross-base suggests the possibility that the platform feature may
have originally been the site of a ceremonial cross.
The Lantern Chapel, at the west end of The
Heugh, was also investigated. This has been a poorly understood
building and, in its current form, bears little resemblance to a
chapel, although a chapel-like structure is depicted in this
position on a map of the island dating from 1548. Excavation here
seems to have confirmed the existence of this chapel by uncovering
the footings of an east-west wall sitting directly upon the natural
bedrock, apparently the remains of an older, narrower building on an
east-west axis beneath the visible walls. A grave had been cut into
the bedrock within the chapel and the disturbed remains of several
individuals were found above it, but left undisturbed.
Although the dates of construction and use of
the three major structures excavated on The Heugh in 2017 remain
unclear, it is likely that they represent a long period of sacral
activity and it is hoped that the analysis of samples taken from all
three sites will provide significant additional information in the
In addition to the cultural heritage of The
Heugh, the natural environment has also been studied and appreciated
as part of the wider Peregrini Lindisfarne project, which has been
made possible by National Lottery players thanks to a £1.37m grant
from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF). The whin bedrock upon which
two of the excavated structures are founded has been studied by
geologist Ian Kille, while the plants and animals of The Heugh and
its southern shore are as inspiring now as they were to St Cuthbert
and his contemporaries. Prior to this season's excavations, the
natural environment had already given some clues to the hidden
secrets of The Heugh, when a botanist working on the Peregrini Whin
Grassland project recently questioned why different non-whin type
plants were present on parts of The Heugh; the archaeology project
has answered this question, showing that these plants were growing
over the sandstone chapel.
This season's work on and around The Heugh
has confirmed the importance of Holy Island in terms of its natural
history and cultural heritage which combine to produce a unique and
inspiring landscape. Conservation Manager, Sara Rushton said 'The
results of this year's excavations on The Heugh have exceeded all
our expectations and will cause us to radically re-think how this
narrow, exposed rocky ridge was used in the medieval and
early-medieval period. These discoveries will make an important
contribution to our understanding of the development of the
monastery on Holy Island'.
The significance of the archaeology and the
national importance of the natural environment will require a
careful balancing act and much thought as to how best to
holistically manage both. The archaeological sites have been
temporarily backfilled and the nationally important habitat restored
in order to give the community and other stakeholders time to
develop a new project to look at, interpret and manage the whole
Heugh - a real legacy for the Peregrini Lindisfarne project.
Berwick Youth Project's Beehive
Service Crew supports Peregrini
Over 3 weeks during the summer holidays,
Berwick Youth Project gave a helping hand to help clean and improve
local facilities. One of the projects was to fill pot holes on
Church Lane, currently used for those visiting St Cuthbert's Beach
and as disabled access to Lindisfarne. They also took part in
clearing the dunes of litter at Cocklawburn Beach. A big thank you
to all those who took part and who give back to their local
Peregrini history boxes go
The Peregrini Lindisfarne Lending Boxes can
currently be seen at Baillifgate Museum in Alnwick! The museum
have borrow the boxes until the end of September and will the using
the artefacts in a 'time-line' exhibition. Periods covered include
Prehistoric, Iron Age, Anglo Saxon - domestic and monastic as well
as Tudor Reiver.
We are delighted to know these will be
enjoyed by the general public and schools who will be visiting the
Peregrini takes part in Heritage Open
Find out more about the history of the World
War II Scremeston Gun Emplacement that sits on the former battery of
lime kilns above the dunes of Cocklawburn Beach. Over the past year
as part of a wider Military Defences project, our volunteers have
cleared the structure of rubbish and debris, removed graffiti and
researched its story.
This research into how the gun emplacement
would have operated will be presented in a variety of ways including
guided walks, informal talks, large-scale illustrations of the gun
housed here and WWII refreshments!
Come along to find out more - Saturday 9th
September 11am - 3pm.
Peregrini beach busters!
Join Peregrini and some of our dedicated
volunteers to take part in this year's Marine Conservation Society
Great British Beach Clean on September 16th! Taking place between
9.30am - 4.00pm we'll meet at Chare Ends Car Park and take a
circular walk around Holy Island.
As part of the MCS Beachwatch we'll then be
taking part in the national beach cleaning and litter surveying
programme - helping people all around the UK to care for their
Some of our best-loved marine wildlife is
under threat from the waste and litter in our seas, with hundreds of
species accidentally eating or becoming entangled in litter. It's
also dangerous for people and damaging to our tourism and fishing
industries. We all have a part to play in turning the tide on
litter. For booking information go to our website events
September events and
Please go to our website to see the full list
of our events http://www.peregrinilindisfarne.org.uk/events/
| RESULTS OF LINDISFARNE COMMUNITY ARCHAEOLOGY
ON THE HEUGH
||Richard Carlton |
Community Archaeology excavations continued under the umbrella of
the Peregrini Lindisfarne Partnership on Holy Island in June and
The most well publicised remains revealed in 2017 were those of
the foundations of an Anglo-Saxon chapel on the crown of the Heugh,
next to the beacon tower. Although a small part of this structure
was revealed in 2016, it was not confirmed as a religious structure
until its east end was exposed in June this year, showing that it
comprised a narrower chancel or sanctuary attached to the wider,
longer nave. The building, which survived only as a foundation
course, measures some 16 metres east-west and between 6 and 7 metres
north-south and runs on an east-west alignment overlooking the later
priory, with unimpeded views to Bamburgh and the Farnes. Indeed, the
position of the building is one of the factors supporting its early
origin, although its stone-built construction suggests that the
current structure may not be the earliest on this site. Apart from
abundant fragments of facing stone and some rather crudely-tooled
architectural features, few finds were made to assist with dating
the church. Nor were any floors or other securely-dateable original
deposits found, but it is possible that the analysis of samples
taken from under the foundation stones may yet provide some clues.
The church has now been recovered with topsoil and turf, leaving low
banks to indicate the course of its walls, allowing the grassland to
recover before decisions are made regarding any future display and
interpretation of the site.
West of the church remains, close to the existing war memorial,
there was further investigation of a substantial stone-built
structure also partially uncovered last year, which has been
tentatively identified as the base of a watchtower, again possibly
of Anglo-Saxon date. In addition to the squared foundation platform
of rough cobbles, the excavators discovered a socketed stone,
thought to be a reused cross-shaft, mortared into the south face of
the platform and an external cobbled surface in the same area. Once
again, no artifacts were discovered which could shed light on the
date of this structure, but it is hoped that samples taken from
beneath the platform, which sits directly upon the whin bedrock,
will provide important clues.
The Lantern Chapel, at the west end of the Heugh, was also
investigated in Summer 2017. In its current form this building
bears little resemblance to a chapel and it is commonly thught to
have originated as a later- or post-medieval lighthouse, although a
chapel-like structure is depicted in this position on a map of the
island dating from 1548. Excavation here seems to have confirmed the
existence of this building, and of its ecclesiastical origins, by
uncovering the footings of an east-west wall sitting directly upon
the natural bedrock, apparently the remains of an older, narrower
building on an east-west axis beneath the visible walls. There were
also indications that multiple burials had taken place inside this
This season's work on and around the Heugh has confirmed the
importance of Holy Island in terms of its natural history and
cultural heritage which combine to produce a unique and inspiring
landscape, The significance of the Heugh itself in the history of
Lindisfarne has been considerably enhanced and it is hoped that a
continuation of this work will further confirm this.
Although managed by professional archaeologists, the successful
results of excavation are entirely due to the hard work of numerous
volunteer excavators who not only shifted tons of earth and stone,
but provided valuable interpretive insight and helped to manage and
enlighten the thousands of visitors to the site throughout the month
of June and into July. Thanks are also due particularly to Dick
Patterson and his colleagues on the Lindisfarne Landscape
Partnership for permitting work on the Heugh, and to Natural England
for providing consent to work in an SSSI. Thanks are also
offered to the island's fishermen who allowed storage of tools in
the harbour, put up with general disturbance over an extended period
and offered encouragement and advice on a range of subjects. It is
hoped that the results of this work are of interest to them and the
wider island community, and that it will be of benefit to all in
cementing and enhancing the status of the island in the history of
|NORTHUMBERLAND COAST AREA OF OUTSTANDING NATURAL BEAUTY
||Catherine Gray |
OPENS FOR ANNUAL FORUM:Registration is now open for the Northumberland
Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) Partnership's 2017
Annual Forum on Friday 29th September at Bamburgh
Speakers include Mark Eaton, who is a Principal
Conservation Scientist with RSPB and will be putting the 'State of Nature
Report' into a local context. The report, published in September last year,
has been compiled by 50 wildlife organisations and
is a stock take of our native wildlife. We are also delighted
to welcome Tim Morton, who is the Co-ordinator for
the new Coast Care initiative on the Northumberland coast. He will be bringing
us up to date with their work.
Other speakers are Helen Griffiths. She has
worked on the Peregrini Lindisfarne Project and as it draws to
a close at the end of this year, Helen will tell us
about the work that has been carried out and its impending legacy.
We also hear from speakers and performers about
Wilson's Tales, one of the projects we supported through our Sustainable Development
Fund. Jessica Turner will give a lively talk on
the recent archaeological dig at the Heugh on Holy Island, which revealed the
possible siting of St Aidan's first church.
We are also pleased to
introduce Phil Dyke, a coast and marine advisor
from the National Trust, who will look back at the Enterprise Neptune
Campaign, which allowed them to buy 574 miles of
coastline. Phil will look at how that has shaped the lessons for coastal
management in the past, present and future.
Cllr Jeff Watson, Chair of the AONB Partnership said "I
am delighted to be more involved in the Annual Forum this year,
having only recently taken up the reins as
Chairman. We have a tremendous range of speakers which is sure to
provide an entertaining and thought provoking day. It's a
marvellous opportunity for those interested in the Northumberland coast to come together and
contribute to the work of the Partnership".
Lunch as well as mid-morning
and afternoon refreshments will be provided. Places cost £10 to cover our costs
and are limited, so registration is essential.
To book your place visit our Eventbrite
or access it via the AONB Partnership's Facebook page. For more information about the event
contact the AONB Partnership on 01670 620306
Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
c/o County Hall, Morpeth, Northumberland, NE61
Tel. 01670 622 644
|NEWS FROM FORD &
September Etal Flower Show
[Gates open 12 noon. £4
adults, children and parking free.]
Open exhibition with over 170 classes plus
music from Summerland, aerial dance and workshops from All or
Nothing, log carving, clog dancing, archery, children's sports, bar,
refreshments and much more! www.etalflowershow.org.uk (sorry link removed)
Saturday 16th September Bullnose
Morris Vintage Car Run
The Bullnose Morris Vintage Car Club is
staying in Northumberland over the weekend and taking a run up to
Heatherslaw Cornmill where they will stop for coffee. Cars
will be on show from around 10.30am - a great spectacle!
Sunday 17th September Monthly Farmers
Market - 10am-4pm
Lots of local foods and crafts to browse and
buy in the charming surroundings of Hay Farm Heavy Horse
Centre. While you're there take the opportunity to meet the
Clydesdale horses and other rare breeds and have a look around the
centre which is packed full of information and artefacts about the
heavy horses, food production and farming in bygone years.
|FROM THE COMMUNITY OF AIDAN AND
||Revd Ray Simpson |
A few years ago a delegation from Norway met
in my home after walking Cuthbert's Way. There was someone
from their Tourist Board, the Arts, the Church and Business. They
wanted to create a pilgrimage route to their Holy Island of Selje,
but it was difficult terrain -uncrossable mountains, fjords with few
boats, and hamlets that lacked accommodation. Last month I met a
member of this delegation, the publisher Torkjell Djupedal, at
his café, gallery and guest house at Selje. They have achieved
their goal and published a guide.
Selje consists of an inhabited peninsular
and an almost deserted island on Norway's north-west coast. My
hosts, members of The Community of Aidan and Hilda, took me by boat
to the island. We sat in the ancient monastic ruins and climbed into
the cave of Saint Sunniva, which they described as 'Norway's earliest church'.
Holy Island women lost many loved ones at
sea. On Selje it was the women themselves who lost their lives, This
is how Selje's church describes the legend:
Sunniva was the daughter of a Scottish
king who lived under a Norse ruler.
Sunniva rejected the advances of a Viking.
Enraged, he attacked her father's kingdom. She and other women
fled by boat. They landed, in winter, at a deserted Selje and
survived on fish. In summer, farmers arrived and informed their
Earl Hakon that there were women on the island.
He arrived with armed men. The women fled
into a large cave where they prayed for God to proptect them from
these rapists. Rocks fell on them and they died there.
Many years later, in the time of Olaf
Trigvarsson, a farmer found a human skull surrounded by a strange
light. It emitted a sweet perfume. He took it to their chief who
took it to their Bishop Sigurd. They recognised this as a sign of
sanctity. They investigated the cave and found it full of relics.
They built a shrine and many miracles took
place there. This confirmed people in the belief that they had a saint in their midst.
Sunniva's Feast Day is July 8. A marvellous
new sculpture of her greets visitors as they disembark from the boat
from Bergen. She is defiant against the tricks of men and the
cruelty of nature. She is protected by a Cross of Christ. This is in
the form of a mast which steers a ship safely to land, and in the
shape of rocks which come between her and her predators.
Before I departed I met a group in a nearby
town who made a pilgrimage to Holy Island a few weeks later last
month. The Viking links - with their theme of turning terrorists
into trusted friends - seem to grow.
|FROM THE VICARAGE
||Revd Dr Paul Collins|
The approach of Autumn is heralded by the
beginning of the month of September and reminds us that the year is
now headed for its conclusion in Winter. Before
that we will celebrate the Harvest on October 8th this year and
then Remembrance Sunday this year, is November 12th.
These two different days remind us that we have much
to give thanks for and much to remember.
At the heart of Christian faith is a profound
sense of thankfulness: for the gift of life itself - for all that
sustains life both in a practical and emotional sense: food and
warmth and love and care. These are God's gifts to us in
the abundance of his creation. And they are constantly renewed and refocussed
in God's love shown to us in Jesus.
But we also
remember the sacrifice made by so many due to the realities of
human conflicts and the human propensity for violence.
This year has seen so many acts of political
/ religious violence; and incidents of knife and acid attacks have
often been in the news. We are faced not only by the need to condemn
violence and aggression; and but by the much greater challenge of
putting before those who turn so easily (it seems) to violence another
vision for their own and other people's lives.
We face the need to reaffirm the values which
speak broadly and loudly about the common good and the possibility
of a 'good life' for every person under heaven. This is no easy task
either within our own country let alone more widely across our
fragile world. The appeal to a set of common values upon which a
vision of the common good might rest has been dissipated over the
past several decades in our own country. Nonetheless I believe that
within and between the Abrahamic Faiths there are shared values
which can be identified which could form the foundation of a
renewed understanding of the common good and offer the possibility of a
vision of justice, love and peace for all.
YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE
We have saunterers ahead of us,
eking out their last few
drinking in their atmosphere,
gawking at the
and dawdling along the causeway
in the way of
those of us
with lives to live, a train to catch,
a tide to
beat, a meal to snatch,
who need to overtake
saunterers along the causeway.
Not too bad: the tide is fine...
but one just walked
across the road,
eyes on the view, not on the car,
sauntered out ahead of us!
They're better than the splashers
who plough into the
just like it was a car-wash
specially kitted out with
(that agent of corrosion,
the leprosy of vehicles
waving local cars out of the way,
trying to soak us for good
considerate or what?
- it's sodding salt-water,
....Don't get me started.
And when you've driven half the country's length
to get home
before the tide,
been stuck at traffic-lights for Sunday
and followed the DIVERSION signs
and still arrive on
they will be gawping at the water's edge,
lining up like
pulled up with the vehicles
to block the
'Too late to pass,' they think,
'we checked the County
- smugness of saunterers!
Try to explain, again.
'Out of the way,' we say,
us live here -
shift your car ower there..'
Come back another year.
meet our hospice team