National Geographic, a Conference and Season 4 preparations

It’s been a while since we updated so thought we should share what we have been doing!

As seen in National Geographic

We are thrilled to be included in a National Geographic publication 100 Places That Can Change Your Child’s Life (available February 5th 2013). The book, written by National geographic Traveller magazine editor Keith Bellows is aimed at parents and families, and:

provides all you need to create life-changing vacations around the world with your kids… slice-of-life, age-appropriate ideas for special places that offer life experiences and peeks into different cultures. Each chapter answers these simple questions: What is the one experience you must have here that will help you understand it better… that will give you insights into its culture and people… that is unforgettable… and that will enrich the life of a child?

The book, available from February 5 2013, features the Black Friary Archaeology Project in Trim, Co. Meath, and children’s archaeology venture Dig it Kids; this offers families a chance to experience a live archaeological excavation through participation and play-based learning.

For more information see

(ISBN-10: 1426208596)NatGeoCover


The winter is always spent catching up on post excavation and we have been busy sorting through records, finds and plans preparing the preliminary report for Seasons 2 & 3. We have also been planning for Season 4 2013, looking at which Cuttings to continue work in, and where we need to open next to further the research questions from the last season (Season 3 2012). We are still perusing a number of key questions:

  • What is the extent of the church building (Cutting 3 captures only part of the northern section)
  •  What is the extent of the burial associated directly with the church building, and particularly identifying which burials were originally inserted into church wall chamber (currently referred to as the ossuary), and which are later insertions into the church floor
  • How long was the site in use for as both an ‘official’ and ‘unofficial’ burial place (the possible cillìn)

Those questions may be specifically addressed by the excavations but we also have other questions arising that may be addressed through discourse and research. These include questions surrounding

  •  the role of the friars and the friary in the town
  • the occurrence of formal burials inside the church and what this might tell us about the individuals chosen for burial in these locations

To that end we are planning a conference! The conference will be held in Trim on July 2nd and 3rd 2013, and will include international speakers on the subject of monasticism and urban archaeology in the late medieval period. There will be more details to follow over the coming weeks.

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