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Origins of TillVAS

The Society was formed in February 2011 in response to local interest in the archaeology, history and heritage of the Till Valley. Its formation was greatly stimulated by the participation of local volunteers in the archaeological excavations taking place on and around the site of the Battle of Flodden.


The enthusiasm and hard work of the volunteers was recognised by the professional archaeologists leading the excavations. Dr. Chris Burgess, Northumberland County Archaeologist, encouraged and persuaded a 'core' of volunteers that there was a need for a local Society to be involved in local archaeology and history which would complement the activities of other volunteer groups already in place further south in Northumberland.


The idea took hold quickly and indoor meetings and outdoor events were arranged, the first of these being centred on Crookham Village Hall. Crookham is still the 'home' venue although other locations are used from time to time such as Etal Village Hall, Branxton Village Hall and Coldstream Community Centre. Many more local people were encouraged to join the Society and to take part in excavations and field walking.


The establishment of the Society also enabled insurance cover to be put in place so that members might be protected against any risk incurred on its activities including archaeological excavations. The Society itself is covered against public liability. All non-members taking part in an excavation are required to be insured through the Society and twelve months cover is provided by collection of a small charge when they are on site.


There has been a strong growth in membership since 2011 reaching 123 members by March 2017 (including our first overseas member), reflecting the extent of local (and even wider) interest.

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