Forthcoming Events

The new dig dates are 8th to the 19th October

Open day is Sunday 13th October


The proposed dig has now been postponed until the 7th October until the 19th October

If you are interested in joining us then please get in touch

The field conditions are water logged the cut crop is laying sodden on the ground

We now have to wait for it all to dry out before we can use the land


We are now planning an archaeological dig close to the village in August 2019

Starting on the 5th August and finishing on the 16th August

There will be an open day on Sunday 11th August from 11 to 4pm

The site is situated just off Broad Lane Cawood Common. There will be a large white tent in the field and car park signs

We are hoping to find evidence of Iron Age and Romano British settlement

We have already found early pottery lying on the field

We are very grateful to the farmer for allowing us the use of his field from mid July until early 2020

There is so much evidence of early settlement in this field as seen from aerial shots and crop mark maps

We applied to Eastern Community Engagement Forum at Selby District Council for a grant to help with the dig

We were lucky to receive £2500 which will cover paying an archaeologist to supervise the excavation

So far we have had 50 volunteers offer to help. I am making a list to decide which days are wanted

A view across the field we are searching

Books now available from the village Post Office…Pickled Postie

We have ordered another 50 books….still have afew left

We still have a few books available for sale

As the Grangeside Nurseries are closed for a month the books are available from me

Please get in touch…

An Exhibition of WW1 and book launch


WW1 commemoration of end of the war in Cawood Church

10th -12th November 12-4.30 pm

Hoping to display details of the men from Cawood who died in WW1 in the church on

Saturday 10th until Monday 12th November

No extra service this year

That will be held on the 11th November during the normal Sunday service at 10am

Church will be open from 12pm until 4.30 pm

At 3pm there will be a minutes silence and then we will read out the names of the men who died

Refreshments are available, donations to

Cawood Church and Cawood Castle Garth Group



The book records those who lost their lives from Cawood in the first world war

Also some of the men who returned. This time around we have not recorded every man who left to fight…it is  almost 200 of them but possibly a reprint if we sell these first published ones


During August and September we were very pleased to be allowed to investigate the possibility of an Iron Age with some Roman  site  on Cawood Common

We did 6 field walks, a resistivity survey with Jon Kenny and a magnetometry survey with James Lawton of AOC Archaeology

There is so much archaeology on the site that we are hoping to investigate further when the current crop comes out of the field

Volunteers will be needed to help If you are interested let us know It will probably be during August next year

Tonight in the school hall at 7.30pm 23rd May 2018

Events for 2018

We are planning this years events. If there is topic that you would like to know   more about leave a request here

Subjects to be considered are Iron Age, Archbishops Fish Farming, WW1 commemoration of the end of the war, Tour of village houses with Vernacular Society

Afternoon teas and oral history

Wednesday 22nd November 2017

Core sampling on the garth at 10 am

We are looking for fish scales in the soil which would show evidence of the Archbishops of York Fish farming

Everyone is welcome to come along and see what we are doing

We have special scheduled monument consent from Historic England to search for these scales


Saturday 21st October 2017

 We welcome Kurt Hunter Mann from York

to talk to the village about Romans

Everyone is welcome and it is a free event

Cawood School 2-4.30pm


Refreshments available Donations welcome

Kurt has been an archaeologist for many years and was recently on a TV programme about headless bodies found in York


Saturday 23rd September a continuation of our examination of Cawood village bricks

Sandra Garside-Neville will discuss bricks and look at the research we have done so far

If you would like to know more about how to date your house from bricks please join us next week, we will be delighted to see you


meeting in the village school 12 pm to 4 pm

Refreshments provided. Visit to a rare example of a brickyard wind pump


Castle garth groups programme for 2017


Back page showing events planned



Recording Cawood’s bricks: Exploring history

with Sandra Garside-Neville

on the 15th July at 10 for 10.30 until 4.30pm

In Cawood Church and later at Nether Farm (Opposite the church )

A free workshop on how to date bricks and buildings.

We hope to collect data from bricks in the village during the summer to identify any that were made here

later on the 23rd September Sandra will return to see the results. This will be useful if you miss the first workshop

Please bring a packed lunch. Drinks will be provided

A tour of some of the old listed houses included

Please contact for more information and to book a place

Telephone: 01757 268666



Aerial Archaeology and the rise of the Drones


On Wednesday 14th June in the Old Boys School Cawood at 7,30pm we shall be introducing Aerial photography…a new tool for historians and archaeologists

Its an exciting adventure for the group to see the village from the air in such detail

Jon Kenny and Tony Hunt will show us the aerial photographs taken recently and explain the significance from a research point of view for our village

Please come along….

Its a free event…and we also include tea and biscuits in the price!

Hope to see you there?

Alastair Oswald will be leading our Historical Guided tour of the village on Saturday 6th May at 2pm, doors open at 1.45 refreshments after the tour

Cawood Castle Garth Group are going to try a new format in their presentation of local history

We would like to have more regular meetings possibly with speakers and visits and encourage more research on various historic topics.

If you are interested in finding out more please get in touch through our email or look out for posters with more details.

We would like to know what you would like to see?al-photo-crop1

Battles of 1066

On Saturday 12th November 2016 we are holding an open day to see the results of the Keesbury Heritage Project from 1-4pm in the school hall

Dr Jon Kenny will be also giving an exciting talk on The Battles of 1066

The poster above gives more details for the afternoon

The event is free and everyone is welcome to join us

We will be holding a short AGM for the group before we start You are welcome to join us for this.

Refreshments will be provided and the latest books we have written will be on sale

Landscapes of Remembrance

Our archaeologist Dr Jon Kenny has been working with York Archaeological Trust, Hidden Context TV and the Heritage Lottery Fund to produce a You Tube video about War Memorials around York and the stories attached to them. In Cawood there are quite a few with surprising stories. The 2nd part of the film that shows Cawood is out now. It describes the movement of the war memorial from the chapel to the church memorial garden and the meaning behind the memorial window in the church

Landscapes Of Remembrance –  Part Two

and can be found under this link

Keesbury Hall …..a new booklet with a short version of the research done on the history of the site and the Cawood family

keesbury Hall leaflet

Our new History of Keesbury Hall is now available at the Grangeside Nursery on Thorpe Lane, Cawood. Cost £2 each( this enables us to save for more when these run out)

The booklet is 32 pages and can be ordered by post. An extra 64 p for UK postage.

Cheques made out to Cawood Castle Garth Group

Send to 22 Church End, Cawood, Selby YO8 3SN

Later in the Autumn

We will have an open day to show the final results of the Keesbury project. I will post the date and time later. This photograph shows the last open day last October.

Jon speaking grant end do

Finished Keesbury Project

At the end of June we finished our Keesbury Heritage Project

Feel very sad that it is all over. It was quite stressful at the end as I struggled to find someone to fill in the trenches for us. Farmers are always busy at this time of year with hay making and harvest.

I did however find a contractor who cleans out the local ditches. He came last Friday with a very large digger and made short work of it all.

By this time, the grass was so long and had been pushed over by the rain that it was impossible to walk on the site. After all the 43 days of digging, I managed to fall over in the moat on the last day. It’s not something I would recommend.

The contractor made a good job of the trench filling considering he found it difficult to see where they were. It was a great pity we couldn’t go back and do a little more digging maybe another time?

The flooding and the high water table beat us in the end.

This photograph shows trench 1


Heritage of Cawood

New Videos

This is a link to a new series of videos produced by Dr Jon Kenny our archaeologist about the battle of Fulford in 1066


Nothing planned for Keesbury Dig at the moment but if the water still keeps going down then we might be able to get back in briefly

The sign for the gate is now complete just need to decide where to put it!

The site is still full of water.

If the water dries out in the next few weeks there is a possibility we could go back on the site to sift the soil heaps to see if we have missed any finds.

A family day out of sieving before the trenches are filled inIMG_1502

No events planned until the results of the Dig come out later this year

Launch of the Gooseberry Leaflet

We made it to the Selby Times just before Xmas to launch our leaflet.

The leaflet with research into gooseberry growing in Cawood is now finished

Hope to be able to put some in the Post Office soon

better group

kids photo

Finds Expert to Identify the artefacts

A finds expert is visiting next week so we should be able to date some of the work that we have been doing

The following week a brick and tile expert is coming Hope she can stay for a long time as we rather a lot of CBM (Ceramic building materials)

We sorted out the finds boxes ready for their visits which took most of the day

Our best finds so far are pieces of Jet. I wonder how the jet arrived in Cawood?

We are hoping that the pottery expert can identify the pot which was found in the same position which will give us a date for it

Some investigation has found that jet was carved in York during Viking times


Dig dates running out

The weather is unpredictable at the moment and when its not raining the trenches are filling up with water

Our last dig dates are……

Tuesday 24th, Wednesday 25th November and Thursday 26th November

These are dependent on good weather….fingers crossed it doesn’t snow. It did in 1971

Tuesday 20th and Wednesday the 21st October which may be our last dig events.

On the Wednesday we would like to clean up the trenches ready for a guided tour on the following Saturday the 24th October for our open day.

We have to end sometime I suppose!

It’s been a really good project and have found many things we had not expected

There have been disappointments at not finding the house……it’s probabaly in next door’s garden

Still, a cess pit, a midden, a fireplace, a drain and the medieval floor level have all been unexpected.

The school will visit Tuesday, late morning, weather permitting .

A guided tour of the site, wash finds and dig in trench 4 are the plans for Tuesday

Grand Finale to Project

Please reserve the date in your diary

Saturday 24th October 1pm-4pm

Cawood School Hall

During the day there will be a displays of all the finds, photographs of the dig, maps, surveys and gooseberry pies to eat.

There will be guided tours of the site with our archaeologist Dr Jon Kenny.

A talk by Jon Kenny and Margaret Brearley during the afternoon explaining our project and our achievements so far.


Jenny, Mary & Alison who excavated the channel


We have added extra days …..we have quite a few trenches to start and finish

Dates of digs………:

Meet at 9.30-10 am  until 4pm

at 15 Broad Lane, Cawood

Next dig days are the 20th and 21st October possibly the last for now

We used the digger to lift the grass so we can concentrate on the fun bits………finding stuff!

If you are interested come along on one of the days………….no equipment needed

or contact us by  e -mail


Digging team

More Trenches on Keesbury

At last our Scheduled Moument Consent has come only took 7 weeks!

If you would like to volunteer to help us please let us know?

We need volunteers to wash the finds as well as dig the holes…so something for everyone to have ago at!!

or you can just watch others digging holes!!!

We can offer evenings and weekends if you cannot come during the day


To book a place contact us on:


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