Cleveland Archaeology | News Update October 2018: Posters, Funding and Geofizz

Please Note | Future news items will appear on our parent website at Cleveland Archaeology.

Spencer Carter, Projects Co-Director, will present and talk about the ICE AND FIRE rescue archaeology project on Teesside’s Eston Hills, at the Palaeolithic & Mesolithic Conference being held at the British Museum, 25-6 October 2018.

Learn more about the project »

In the meantime, we have applied to Teesside Philanthropic Foundation for funding so that we can print more of the ICE AND FIRE 2018 Report booklet for distribution across schools and community outlets. Wish us luck!


We’re also delighted to have received the REAPING TIME geophysical survey report by Archaeological Services Durham University for the summer survey of more than 30ha as part of the initial Explore and Evaluate phase.

Learn more about the project »

The results are tremendously exciting and add much detail, as well as questions, to our observations of crop and soil marks from satellite and LiDAR (aerial laser) imagery. The report, in addition to the field-walking finds and surface observations, will influence our proposals for community engagement in 2019-20, subject to review and funding. Discussions will take place through November in the hope that we can kick-off more field-walking and finds processing in Spring 2019, followed by summer test pit excavations of selected features.

Thank you for reading — more news soon!

– Spencer
Cleveland Archaeology Project Team

ICE AND FIRE | Launching our new Cleveland Archaeology website

We’re delighted to launch our parent website, Cleveland Archaeology as a portal for active community archaeological projects being undertaken by TimeVista Archaeology and colleagues in the Teesside and Cleveland areas south of the River Tees, ceremonially north-east Yorkshire.

Our Cleveland projects are non-commercial and not-for-profit, funded with grants from the Big Lottery Fund and Heritage Lottery Fund as well as other charitable and philanthropic organisations. This site does not include projects being conducted by other voluntary or commercial groups.

This ICE AND FIRE website remains active and is linked from the parent site. We have a second community archaeology project in East Cleveland, REAPING TIME, which is in the first Explore and Evaluate phase of what we hope will be a multi-year adventure, alongside our work on the Eston Hills and elsewhere. While we await the results of a geophysical survey undertaken in August, there are already some great finds from field-walking. Community engagements are planned for Spring 2019, subject to more grant funding.

We have created a consolidated contact form on the parent site where you can ask questions and register your interest in both outdoor fieldwork and indoor activities across our active projects.

Our Mission | Connecting People With Place by promoting well-being, belonging and cultural value through sustainable Heritage and Archaeology.

ICE AND FIRE News Update July 2018 | Young Artist, Summer Heat, Future Events

As the holidays begin and the summer heat continues, here’s a news update for the Eston Hills Rescue Archaeology Community Project.


Schools rule when it comes to taking back ownership of the Eston Hills community landscape. The hills belong to all of us – to enjoy, relax in and to explore wildlife and our heritage.

ICE & FIRE‘s Young Artist In Residence, Evie aged 10 (Year 5) from Whale Hill Primary School in Eston, has created this fantastic poster: SAVE ESTON HILLS FROM FIRE! We’ll be using this in future reports and on our website. Congratulations Evie!


The terrible news about the Pennine moorland fires at Winter Hill near Saddleworth remind us all how easily fires start, quickly become out of control, and risk the lives of residents and emergency services personnel. The damage to the ecosystem, wildlife, vegetation and heritage is incalculable, and some damage will be unrecoverable. Our peatlands and forests are also critical for capturing carbon that would otherwise be released into the environment and atmosphere.

Our own moorlands, woodlands and grasslands, even roadside stretches, are at HIGH FIRE RISK. Cleveland Fire Brigade alongside Cleveland Police, ICE & FIRE project partners, are urging everybody to be extra-cautious and vigilant. A great deal of progress has been made in reducing crime, anti-social behaviour, illegal off-roaders and arson, but offending continues by a reckless minority. Report any suspicious activity to @CrimestoppersUK on 0800 555111 or Cleveland Police on 101.

You must dial 999 in the event of a serious crime, injury, or where lives, livestock or property are at risk.


The ICE & FIRE project team met in Thirsk during June to celebrate our 2018 Interim HLF Report and to begin planning funding, activities and events in the future. We were only able to print a small number of the report booklet and posters – free to download as PDFs – but we are seeking funding to print more for schools and community outlets. A report copy is deposited in the Bill Bryson Library at Durham University and will be deposited at Middlesbrough Reference Library in the near future.

L to R | Market Day in Thirsk: Rita Richardson (Friends of Eston Hills), Adam Mead (Director), Spencer Carter (Co-Director), and Terri Edwards (Editor).

Our generous Heritage Lottery North-East grant for 2017 has been fully spent, with great results to match, and some ongoing specialist finds research work. We have identified some viable funding sources which we will apply to in order to continue work over the coming few years.

While team commitments elsewhere mean that fieldwork is not planned for 2018, we will be looking to provide some finds-handling and training events during the autumn and winter. In the meantime, some recent security-ditch digging on the hills, aimed at excluding off-road vehicles, will be monitored and any disturbed archaeology accurately recorded. While the weather is so dry and the ground parched, we will also be conducting drone surveys to identify any new archaeological features – and we already have some exciting finds in the region!


ICE & FIRE has a fantastic number of volunteers and people who have registered an interest in future fieldwork, as well as indoor activities such as finds processing and archive recording. We maintain a commitment to safeguard everybody’s personal information and to ensure that it is only used in relation to the project.

We are in the process of migrating contact details to a secure application (Mailchimp) which will make management and communications easier, allow personal subscription management and unsubscribe where individuals no longer wish to receive messages.

In the meantime, please spread the word about our exciting project and register your interest on our website or by email!

We hope that your summer is happy, relaxed and above all, safe.

ICE AND FIRE Project Team | Read more about the project »

ICE AND FIRE | Eston Hills Action Group Update | Winning against crime

With the support of Anna Turley MP, a great deal of progress has been made in the last year – and including the rescue archaeology project which has delivered exciting results!

“It is just over a year ago that we brought together the Eston Hills Action Group, after a wave of anti-social behaviour, vandalism and arson on the Eston Hills.

There are crime and ASB issues right across the area which we are working to tackle, but it was just as important to protect the Hills which were such an open and dangerous target, drawing away emergency resources from elsewhere.

Lots of thoughts and ideas came out of the first public meeting and since then the group have been working to deliver improvements. I think it is safe to say a lot of progress has been made and the result so far have been positive.”

ICE AND FIRE Project Team | Read more about the project »

ICE AND FIRE | The Eston Hills Rescue Archaeology Project | Posters

We’re pleased to announce that printed A3-size posters will be available for distribution by the end of April. The project team will deliver copies to schools, colleges, museums, libraries and other community outlets.

We have also added this and a Timeline Chart to our Publications webpage. The chart is included in the 2018 Interim Report.

Kind regards,

– Spencer | Project Co-Director 2018

ICE AND FIRE Project Team | Read more about the project »

ICE AND FIRE | The Eston Hills Rescue Archaeology Project | Free 2018 Report

Our first fieldwork season in the summer of 2017 has exceeded all expectations across our many activities – geophysical surveys, wetland coring, test pit excavations with features and truly exceptional finds. With thanks to our supporters, not least Heritage Lottery North-East, and enthusiastic community volunteers, we are delighted to release our free-to-download 2018 Interim Report:

ICE AND FIRE | The Eston Hills Rescue Archaeology Project: A Community Project in Redcar & Cleveland, North Yorkshire »

The report undergoes periodic minor updates, latest version 4, 12-Apr-2018 (16Mb).

ISBN 978-1-5272-2274-8 | Published 2018 by TimeVista Archaeology, London, UK

Authors | Spencer D. Carter, Terri Edwards, David Errickson and Adam Mead

PDF Download, A4 88pp + 4pp covers, colour illustrations throughout. A Lithics Analysis Catalogue is available as PDF and Excel formats – links are provided in the report.

We hope to receive funding for hard-copy printed books to distribute within the community.

– Spencer | Project Co-Director 2018
TimeVista Archaeology | Honorary Research Fellow, Durham University Archaeology, UK

ICE AND FIRE Project Team | Read more about the project »

ICE AND FIRE | 2018 Archaeology Project Video from Teesside

Happy New Year to all our ICE & FIRE fans!

To kick-off 2018, we’re delighted that Archaeosoup Productions have once again released a fantastic video. Here, Adam Mead presents the project’s scope, what the 2017 season of geophysical surveys, pollen-coring, test pits and excavations have revealed so far, and what lies ahead. To be honest, 2017 results have already exceeded all expectations! The video runs for 36 minutes (after a short advert) and includes an overview of timelines back into prehistory.


“The ICE AND FIRE project is making a positive difference looking after the past and giving a future to this precious resource, our Eston Hills.”
– Robert Nichols | Discover Middlesbrough

– ICE AND FIRE Project Team

ICE AND FIRE | CBA Marsh Award for Community Archaeology 2017 – Highly Commended

The ICE & FIRE project team is delighted not only to have been shortlisted in the top three national nominations for the Marsh Awards, Community Archaeology Projects category, but also to achieve Highly Commended recognition for contributions to knowledge and wellbeing in the November awards announcement at Burlington House, London.

While we did not win first place, this is a fantastic reflection of all the hard work – across the many funding bodies, supporting organizations, advisors, volunteers, and the community – for an ongoing project which aims to make a real difference to our collective appreciation of a fragile landscape. There remains much work ahead, over the coming years, to unravel more than ten thousand years of our shared past.

Archaeology For All

We warmly congratulate all of the Marsh Award nominees in all categories, and most especially the well-deserving winners! There is a collective pride and respect for individuals, groups and projects who keep our Archaeology and Heritage safer for future generations to explore and enjoy.

We’re especially grateful to our main fund-provider, Heritage Lottery North-East, to Dr David Petts, Associate Professor in Archaeology at Durham University, for his generous nomination, to Anna Turley, MP for Redcar, for ongoing enthusiastic support, Redcar & Cleveland Borough Council for so many related activities, to all our sponsors, and most especially to CBA and Brian Marsh for their kind consideration.

What’s Next?

Adam is pulling together the written archaeological report for the 2017 field season, together with finds analyses, for submission to HLF by the end of February 2018. We’ll share and publish when it’s completed! We’re also exploring funding opportunities for the years ahead – you can help there too. While anti-social activities have been much reduced, there remain challenges for all concerned. Remember: there is ongoing consideration for the Eston Hills to be integrated into the North York Moors National Park for oversight, investment and protection. We hope for more news and debate here in 2018.

On a personal note, your ICE & FIRE website editor, along with all of his friends, would like to congratulate Adam Mead on his BA (Hons) degree in Archaeology at Durham University and his recent employment at Archaeological Services Durham University. He’s busy, and cold! Adam’s graduation ceremony is on 11 January in Durham Cathedral. What better place?

– ICE AND FIRE Project Team

ICE AND FIRE | Guided Archaeology Walk Pictures

On Sunday 29 October, Adam hosted a guided archaeology walk as part of the DISCOVER MIDDLESBROUGH 2017 FESTIVAL. Here are some of the pictures to enjoy, courtesy of Robert Nichols and Prof Peter Rowley-Conwy (Durham University).

Discover Middlesbrough on Facebook »

Robert writes:

The ICE AND FIRE walk this morning was a fascinating guided walk around Eston Hills on Teesside. We were privileged to be in the company of a group of experts assembled by archaeologist Adam Mead to unpick and unlock the history and prehistory.

From Neolithic rock art to WW2 bomb craters there is an incredible amount to see when you have expert guides. We had all kinds of weather which really begged the question just why would people live on the hills? That and questions of how the first farmers of the Neolithic survived economically, where they lived and how succeeding Bronze and Iron Age communities looked to defend themselves were all addressed.

Adam Mead was at pains to point out that they have as yet only scratched the surface of the archaeology from Eston Hills but we need to protect the landscape now or those stories will be lost forever. That means all helping to stop the destruction from illegal off-road vehicles and fires.

The ICE AND FIRE project is making a positive difference looking after the past and giving a future to this precious resource, our Eston Hills.

The Team

The Landscape

Neolithic Cup-and-Ring Rock Art

– ICE AND FIRE Project Team



ICE AND FIRE | Reminder: Free Guided Archaeology Walk Sun 29 Oct


Sun 29 Oct | 10am – 1pm FREE
Meet at Flatts Lane Country Park Visitor Centre, Flatts Lane, Normanby, TS6 0NN | Free parking

Weather Forecast | Cloudy, mostly dry, possible light shower, cool 10ºC

Discover the prehistory of Eston Hills with archaeologist Adam Mead and Forensic Anthropologist, Dave Errickson. Explore the traces of early human activity. This free guided walk will show archaeological sites including those uncovered in this year’s Heritage Lottery funded ICE AND FIRE project — shortlisted for a 2017 national community archaeology award.

Anna Turley, MP for Redcar, pictured above with some of our younger volunteers.

There will also be the chance to view and handle some of the recent finds!

This ongoing project aims to explore, record and celebrate the evidence for over 10,000 years of human life, death, ingenuity and persistence in a fragile community landscape.

The walk may not be suitable for some people due to the rough terrain and a steep incline to the top of the hills. Strong, stout shoes or boots are a must with the usual advice to bring waterproof clothing, and plenty of liquid refreshment. Toilet facilities are located in the Flatts Lane visitor centre. Dogs and difficult husbands should be kept on a lead please.

– ICE AND FIRE Project Team