The Unofficial Website for Tony Robinson

Time Team: Series 16, 2008 - Click on the links below for the different programmes.
The Trouble with Temples - Friars Wash
The Wedding Present - Scargill Castle
Heroes' Hill - Knockdhu
Toga Town - Caerwent
Blood, Sweat and Beers - Risehill
Buried Bishops and Belfries - Salisbury
Anarchy in the UK - Radcot
Mystery of the Ice Cream Villa - Colworth
Hermit Harbour - Looe
Called to the Bar - Lincoln's Inn
Beacon of the Fens - Warboys
The Hollow Way - Ulnaby
Skeletons in the Shed - Blythburgh

The Hollow Way - Ulnaby

Tony and the Team travel this week to the grass-covered remains of the deserted medieval village of Ulnaby in the Durham countryside.
It consists of a number of tofts - peasant house plots and their accompanying gardens - in two rows with a village green, and is situated next to Ulnaby Hall farmhouse.

Phil Harding said: "There are not many sites that are as well preserved as this. It's an absolute classic, when you look at it on aerial photographs. It is a site to die for and to all intents and purposes it's all here."

The Team were trying to find evidence that the village dated back to Saxon times and also unearth possible reasons for its abandonment. They were also investigating why the villagers in Ulnaby would have used ridge and furrow ploughing techniques.

Phil said: "We've got material dating back to the 14th Century, which is not as early as I would have thought, but maybe we're digging in the wrong place. We've found a silver coin and also a bone spoon handle - it's the kind of thing that ordinary people would use and not high-status guys. That's what this village is all about. It's about ordinary people, farmers and labourers. We're trying to get away from people such as the lords and we're looking at the ordinary Joe Bloggs."

Tony said: "We've had everything the North-East can throw at us in terms of weather, with the possible exception of a plague of frogs. But this village is amazingly well preserved."

Although the site had been photographed, surveyed and written about, it had never been dug before.
As work progressed, the team's normal good nature and patience were tested to the limit when the evidence in the ground didn't tally with what the archaeologists had expected.

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