Digs at Jacks & the Mercury Theatre

Adam Wightman Reporting on the Digs & Jacks & the Mercury

Following the success of their last meeting, Adam Wightman (Senior Project Manager of The Colchester Archaeological Trust), is going to update the Local History Group on these digs this Wednesday. Both digs were possible because of refurbishment works.

In the case of Jacks, just off the High Street, builders dug six shafts to create foundations to stabilise this 17th century building. This gave the Trust 6 windows on the past; find out what they found in Shaft C at Jacks.

Continue reading “Digs at Jacks & the Mercury Theatre”

Day 56 of (is it?) Lockdown – the Mental Health edition

Social Distancing for kids China-style

Kindness mattersDay 56 of (is it?) Lockdown

If you’re feeling mentally frayed these days, day 56 sees the start of Mental Health Awareness Week.  We start with that and then address:

Mental Health Awareness Week

The theme this year is all about “Kindness Matters”, something we are already seeing a lot of during the COVID-19 crisis. Continue reading “Day 56 of (is it?) Lockdown – the Mental Health edition”

History Everywhere

History Everywhere – 20th October

Do you enjoy walking in the countryside? Did you wonder about particular features that you see around you? Is it Saxon or Roman? Or perhaps why a town looks and feels the way it does?   If so, this one-day course, led by Nicholas James, is definitely for you.

Course Summary

Britain’s history lies in its familiar geographies. Town and country have been shaped by Continue reading “History Everywhere”

Industrial Archaeology – A WEA Course

Industrial archaeologyIndustrial Archaeology

wealogoThe next WEA course is entitled “Industrial Archaeology” and it starts on Tuesday 10th January 2017 at 8pm.

Landscape revolution?

Whilst the Industrial Revolution shaped Tyneside, the Black Country and the south Pennines, it also changed East Anglia’s landscape. Learn how the traditional crafts became mechanised, factory-based, industries, and discover their legacy.  Our tutor is Steven Worsley.

This course will explain the importance of the industrialisation of Britain and will assist students in interpreting and recognising the surviving remains and artefacts.  Eastern Counties industries discussed:

  • Transport Networks,
  • Textiles (wool, cotton, silk, linen),
  • Milling, Malting and Brewing,
  • Raw materials (iron, steel, coal),
  • Power (animal, water, wind, steam),
  • Engineering (especially agricultural),
  • Other farming (tanning, fertilisers).

The course is taking place at the Methodist Hall Chapel Lane, West Bergholt. CO6 3EF and costs £47.25 over 9 weeks. You can pay in one of 3 ways:

  1. Sample the first night for FREE and then pay on attendance at the 2nd night.
  2. Pre-enrol at enrolonline.wea.uk.
  3. Freephone 0800 328 1060 lines open Monday to Friday 10 – 3pm.

If you decide the course is not for you, you can ask for a refund.  There may be a fee waiver for those on low income/benefits.


Contact Gill on 01206 240512 if you would like more details.


Heritage Watch Launched

Heritage Watch LogoHeritage Watch Launched

Influential figures in Essex’s heritage industry came together on 23rd of April at Stow Maries First World War Aerodrome to launch a new police initiative aimed at protecting the past. Heritage Watch is an Essex Police led partnership between agencies that are committed to protecting our heritage, as well as members of the public who want to help preserve our heritage.

The watch scheme looks to maintain and preserve important places of interest, encouraging vigilance and reporting of suspicious activity around sites. This is to prevent any theft or crime that may damage assets beyond recovery, which may lead to the loss of a piece of history for this and future generations.

Heritage Watch locations would include ancient earth works and archeological sites, listed buildings, museums, galleries, religious buildings, historic visitor attractions and others.

Dominic Petre of the Historic Houses Association said he was ‘very pleased’ about the initiative, adding:

When heritage is lost, it is lost forever.

Crimes against heritage are not just crimes against the owner. They are crimes against future generations and culture in general.

Chief Superintendent Carl O’Malley said:

In Essex we have some really significant sites, from the Roman remains in Colchester to Audley End House in Saffron Walden.

The key element for any watch scheme is to involve a broad range of different partners and bring them together. Through expert advice and assistance, we can all help one another. It is about communication, sharing, understanding and reporting.

For further information contact your local Essex Watch Liaison Officer using the Police 101 non–emergency telephone number.