AN ARCHAEOLOGICAL dig is being funded to bring history directly to both elderly and young people in the village of Cawood, between York and Selby.

The Cawood Castle Garth Group’s ‘Changing our Perception of Roman Britain through Cawood’ archaeological dig will involve local school children to help them experience the past. The archaeologist involved in the dig will also visit local residential care homes and share the artefacts found with residents.

The project is part funded by the Eastern Community Engagement Forum with a grant of £2,500.

Margaret Brearley, from the Cawood Castle Garth Group, said: “This is a unique opportunity for the community to experience an archaeological excavation in our area. The site was identified from aerial photographs and in the area we’re planning to dig in, Roman coins have already been found, so the potential for finding artefacts of great significance is huge.

“Involving local school children in the dig itself is a fantastic opportunity to bring their history lessons to life.”

The dig will begin on local farmland later this summer, once the current crop is harvested. Any artefacts discovered will be washed and identified at a special village afternoon tea event for those residents who couldn’t attend the dig. Pottery experts will be called in to accurately date finds.

Margaret added: “Washing and identifying the finds can be very exciting when you see something that has not been seen by anyone for 2,000 years or more. This will also be a social opportunity and a way to involve other people in our community.”

CEF chairman, Bob Procter, said: “This project will encourage and develop further the community spirit in the village and is unique in the way that it involves young people and the elderly. Funding projects like this directly supports the Eastern CEFs development plan by supporting our villages to provide a vibrant range of activities. It has the added benefit of encouraging old and young people to join together in a joint community project.”

The first event has already been held at Community House in Selby for the Friendship Friday group, discussing Selby and the district’s history. At a second event in Cawood, Dr Jon Kenny and Margaret Brearley introduced the evidence for the dig to the community and let residents know about the site.