TAS Bulletin journal now open access | Editions from 1994 now free to read and download

Our annual Bulletin journal is now digitized and open-access – free for everybody to read and download online. We’ve also taken this opportunity to spring-clean the website and make it easier to navigate. Society membership subscriptions are also presently free during the ongoing Covid19 pandemic while monthly lectures continue online – with success! You can read more on the website about how to register until our events and activities return to normal.


Earliest Salt Production in Britain | Neolithic discoveries at Street House Loftus

At the beginning of April 2021 national press coverage broke about the latest exciting finds from excavations by Stephen Sherlock and volunteers at Street House, Loftus. Exceeding two metres below the turfline, evidence for salt production and domestic activities date to the very earliest Neolithic in Britain – likely immigrants from north-western France, dating to 3800-3700 BC. This discovery is also one of the very earliest for salt-production in Europe. The many hundreds of finds include pottery, flint tools and artefacts associated with salt evaporation over fires – the making of salt cakes.

Images are © Stephen Sherlock.

TAS Lecture 27 April 2021 | Bronze Age metals and mobility in Northeast England | Ben Roberts

After his PhD on the Origins and Early Development of Metallurgy in Western Europe, Dr Roberts became Curator at the British Museum, responsible for the European Bronze Age collections, recording Bronze Age hoards found by metal-detecting in England and researching and co-writing 41 programmes in the British Museum/BBC Radio 4 series and accompanying book A History of the World in 100 Objects. Dr Roberts is now Associate Professor of Archaeology at Durham University, researching the transmission of new objects and technologies in northwest and southeast Europe from the Neolithic to the Early Iron Age. 


TAS Virtual Memberships

To help people stay connected to heritage and to like-minded people in these difficult circumstances, TAS has temporarily suspended paid subscriptions. Instead, we are offering free virtual memberships.

Benefits: regular email from TAS containing the link to our online lectures, plus other news and opportunities. Our online lecture hosting has a cap on the number who can participate, so we can’t make these lectures open to the broader public. Subscribing (for free) is, for the time being, the only way you will be able to view TAS lectures.

Virtual subscriber members will be invited to convert their membership to a paid subscription when we can revert to physical gatherings, but will be under no compulsion to do this. Virtual subscriber members can simply unsubscribe at that point.

We are using Zoom online for our live events and attendee instructions are provided ahead of each lecture. These are still planned for the last Tuesday of every month where possible.

To join as a virtual subscriber-member, email us at teesarchsoc.news [at] gmail.com. Please replace [at] with [@] – we have to write it this way on here to avoid being spammed by bots!

TAS LECTURE | ONLINE LECTURE | Deceptively Spacious: Durham Castle and the Walls Survey | Richard Annis

Due to the success of last month’s trial Zoom meeting, the committee have decided to start offering our monthly talks as online meetings for the foreseeable future.

Our talks will be hosted on Zoom on the last Tuesday of each month at 7:30PM to keep in line with our usual schedule. If you are inrerested in joining on on Tuesday, please contact us on teesarchsoc.news@gmail.com and we will send the link to join to you. The link for the following months will be sent out via mailing list each month so to avoid being missed please contact us to be added or visit our website to do so.

So, this month’s talk will be held on TUESDAY 29th SEPTEMBER at 7:30 and our speaker will be Richard Annis. The talk is titled Deceptively Spacious: Durham Castle and the walls survey. This talk covers the former extent of the Castle and describes a detailed survey carried out a few years ago, ending with some views of what remains hidden today.

Richard Annis is a Senior Archaeologist with Durham University; and has worked on a wide variety of archaeological projects throughout the Northeast of England, Cumbria, Humberside, Yorkshire and Gloucestershire during the past 30 years.

We hope to see you all on Tuesday!

Best wishes,


(Deputy chair and comms)


Dear all,

I hope you are all well.

This is just a quick update to keep you all informed of our current stance regarding COVID-19.  We have recently had contact from Stockton Library stating that all public meetings are to be cancelled until May 31st 2020.  This means that both the April and May talks will have to be cancelled. On behalf of the committee, I would like to apologise for this, but I am sure that you all will understand in light of the current global situation.


I have a few updates for you all just in case you are interested:

Firstly, Michael Thompson has asked if any budding artists within TAS would be interested in helping create some artwork for an upcoming talk of his at Bedale History Society in October. The talk is on ‘Women of the ’45’ and this will discuss the stories of 12 women who directly or indirectly helped with the Jacobite Rebellion. These illustrations would be depicting scenes from the stories. Please contact me or Michael if you are interested in this and I will forward on your interest accordingly.


At the last CBA North committee meeting I have volunteered to be a point of contact between members and the larger groups within the North. As such, if anyone has any thoughts/questions/feedback relating to CBA North or National and TAS’ involvement with them please don’t hesitate to contact me and I will either try to respond, pass queries on to the relevant people or give comments as feedback at committee meetings. HOWEVER THIS IS NOT JUST FOR TAS! If anyone is a member of another society or group in the North that would benefit from this please feel free to contact me and I will offer the same for you, just let me know what society or group it is concerning and I will try to help as best I can.


Also, I have come across this link to some online tours of historic sites if anyone is interested in this.

https://www.heritagedaily.com/2020/03/5-virtual-tours-of-historical-sites/126924  and DigVentures has opened up its virtual field school online for free – please see their website and social media for details on this.


Finally, here are some quick links to pages for people that may be struggling at the moment.

For Stockton: https://www.catalyststockton.org/covid-19-community-support/


For other places: https://covidmutualaid.org/local-groups/

Please also continue to follow Government guidelines and seek medical attention where necessary. Local council websites are also good places to look. Again, please contact me if there are any questions.


On behalf of the committee, I hope you are all well and are staying safe and if you have any questions or please don’t hesitate to be in contact us.

Best wishes everyone!


(Deputy Chair and Communications)


Hi everyone,

Please read the information below.
I’m sure you will all be aware of the current global situation regarding Coronavirus (COVID-19). As such, I would like to make you all aware that Durham Archaeology Day next weekend has been postponed and we will keep you informed as soon as we have any further information.

On behalf of the committee, I also regret to inform you that the TAS lecture on  31st March on Archaeology and the Environment Agency, on Teesside by Jennifer Morrison will also be postponed as a result of this. Jenny Morrison has let us know that there is information in the 2020 bulletin (pages 13-19) on the subject of her talk and also that the NAA are selling a monograph on the excavation site: ‘Life of Brine? Bronze Age and Later Discoveries at Marsh House Farm, Hartlepool’ which is £12 including postage and packaging. As a committee, we take the health and safety of the membership and any guest speakers very seriously and in light of the severity of the situation, we thought this would be the best course of action to take. Please remember if you are concerned about symptoms to refer to guidance online: https://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response

We do apologise for any inconvenience and we hope to reschedule with Jenny as soon as we can. Please, don’t hesitate to be in touch if you have any questions.
Stay safe everyone!
Best wishes,
(Deputy Chair and Communications)

TAS Website Maintenance – March 2020

Dear TAS Members and Followers, we’re performing some website updates and maintenance through March 2020. This is intended to simplify the navigation and add open-access to our BULLETIN annual journal, including the latest issue No. 24 (2020), so online documents can be downloaded without passwords.

As this proceeds, you may occasionally see some broken links, and things moving around a little bit. Please be patient. We’ll let you know when this is completed.

Kind Regards,
The TAS Committee (and Spence)

TAS AGM & LECTURE | REMINDER FOR 28 JANUARY | The Auckland Project: Bishop Auckland and Excavations at Auckland Castle | John Castling

Welcome back!

We hope you had a fantastic festive period! This is a reminder that the next lecture and AGM will be held on 28 January 2020 and this will be on The Auckland Project: Bishop Auckland and excavations at Auckland Castle by John Castling.

The subject of the talk is as follows:

Since the demise of the mining industry, Bishop Auckland has been affected by economic and social decline. The Auckland Project aims to drive regeneration in the local community, to make for a vibrant community. This vision is built around Auckland (Bishop’s) Castle, whose thousand-year history is being unearthed and interpreted; art; nature; and theatre.”

John Castling is a part-time PhD student at the Archaeology department of Durham University, researching the Roman, post-Roman and Early Medieval period of County Durham. He is also Curator of Archaeology and Social History at the Auckland Project, co-ordinating archaeological work at Auckland Castle and Binchester Roman Fort.

Can everyone please remember that it is also the AGM at the beginning of this lecture and that membership subscriptions are also due for 2020. As per the decision made at the AGM last year, the price of membership has been raised to £15 for a single membership and £25 for a joint membership. Both memberships entitle the members to attend any lectures and take part in any projects that we offer for 2020 (unless stated) and the TAS annual Bulletin (one per joint membership).

We hope to see you all there!

Stockton Central Library, 7:30PM start.

TAS LECTURE |Reminder 26th November |Annual Update | Steve Sherlock

This month’s talk is by Steve Sherlock giving an Annual Update of his archaeological work. 

Steve Sherlock needs little introduction, as he presents his annual round-up of his archaeological work.  A self-employed archaeologist, his recent and current roles include Archaeological Clerk of Works (A1 Leeming to Barton road-scheme); Archaeological Manager for the A14 road-scheme, Cambridgeshire; and various small commercial projects in Northeast England, from Derbyshire to Teesside.

Please join us 26th November at Stockton Central Library for a 7:30 PM start.