Archaeology at Bath Abbey brought to life with free activities and tours for children

Bath Abbey will be offering a number of free tours and activities for children and families on Friday 26 July and Saturday 27 July as part of the national celebrations for the Festival of Archaeology.

There will be free hands-on activities bringing the past to life through the amazing discoveries from the Abbey’s Footprint project. The activities will be run by Wessex Archaeology and will include environmental sampling with soil and magnifying glasses, artefact handling, and activities themed around the archaeology found at the Abbey, including hands on history activities. Children will also be able to put on 3D headsets to experience some of the 3D models of the archaeological dig at the Abbey so far.

There will also be free tours running on both days including on-site archaeology tours to see the archaeological work taking place as part of the excavation of the Nave and special Graffiti tours of the North East Tower with Wiltshire Medieval Graffiti Survey.

Oliver Taylor, Head of Interpretation, Learning and Engagement at Bath Abbey said: “We’re really keen to engage young people in the work we’re doing at Bath Abbey for our Footprint project and share with them the amazing archaeological discoveries that have been made. The activity days and tours will provide a wonderful opportunity to do this, while at the same time offering families a fun and free experience for their children during the school holidays. We’re really grateful to Wessex Archaeology and the Wiltshire Medieval Graffiti Survey for offering their time and expertise.”

Bruce Eaton, Wessex Archaeology’s Project Manager leading excavations at Bath Abbey, said: ”We’ve been privileged to have been carrying out archaeological investigations over the past 18 months at this extraordinary site as part of the Bath Abbey Footprint project and have encountered archaeology from the Mesolithic, the streets of the Roman town Aqua Sulis, and the development of this Christian site from Anglo-Saxon times to the present day. We look forward to sharing some of our remarkable discoveries and cutting-edge recording techniques with visitors.”

The drop-in activity sessions are suitable for all ages and the tours for ages 7 and up.

The activities and tours will take place as follows:

  • Family-friendly drop-in activity sessions: 10am – 3pm Friday 26 July & 9am – 1pm Saturday 27 July.
  • On-site Archaeology Tours: 9.45am & 12.45pm on Friday 26 July.
  • Graffiti Tours: 10am, 12pm & 2pm Friday 26 July & 10am & 12pm Saturday 27 July.

The Festival of Archaeology is co-ordinated by the Council for British Archaeology with events taking place across the country from 13 to 28 July.