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Festival of Archaeology is a hit with families

This news article was published more than a year ago. Some of the information may no longer be accurate.

Published: 05/09/2012

More than 500 visitors paid a visit to Winterbourne medieval barn to enjoy a full day of activities including a historical re-enactment of life during the Roman period, excavations and demonstrations of Bronze Age metal working and medieval archery.

Emma Thomas and her sister Alice from Downend enjoyed dressing up in Roman costume, while Daniel Greathead from Winterbourne enjoyed the flint knapping demo where he made his own prehistoric tool. Daniel said he wants to become an archaeologist when he is older.

Paul Driscoll, the council’s community archaeology officer and part-time archaeology tutor at the University of Bristol, said: “The practical activities went down really well with families, particularly the bronze casting, where our specialist metal worker created a replica Bronze Age sword. And the excavations showed that beneath a layer of modern debris, a stone feature once existed. We don’t know the date of this yet, but it is a great start to finding out more about this historic site.”

Built in 1342 for the Lord of the Manor, Sir Thomas de Bradestone, Winterbourne Barn is one of the most significant historical sites in South Gloucestershire. The site is next to medieval fishponds, a dovecote and the church of St Michael’s in the heart of Winterbourne.

The barn has been carefully restored by the council and English Heritage and the seven surviving bays of its magnificent 14th century raised cruck roof are amongst the finest examples of medieval roof construction in the country.

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