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Local primary and secondary schools, Young Archaeologists, History and Mental Wellbeing groups have all been along to Under Whitle to work with historians and archaeologists.  Find out more about them here:



Local primary and secondary schools have helped us to peel back the layers.

Pupils from Y9 at Buxton Community School and the ‘Skills for Life Group’ from St Thomas More’s School, Buxton came to Under Whitle to work with the archaeologists to undertake archaeological surveys in March 2016 and returned to excavate over three weeks in June and July, 2016.

They were joined by pupils from primary schools in Hartington, Monyash, Biggin, Elton, Longnor (St Bartholomew’s), Earl Sterndale, Hollinsclough, Blackshaw Moor, Fenny Bentley (Fitzherbert’s) and Warslow (Manifold Academy), alongside three work experience student (Y10s) from Lady Manners School, Bakewell. They explored the trenches getting their hands dirty and learned how to process and record archaeological finds.

Look at our blog in News From the Trenches where you can find out what they got up to.

Pupils told us what they thought by completing our online survey: Did you dig it?


Many groups arranged to visit the project, either as active participants or just to see what was going on.

The Peak District Young Archaeologists’ Club (YAC) took part on three occasions over both the surveys and excavation, the Family and Countryside Education Group (FACE) who awarded the Innovative Learning Award to the TFIG in 2013 came for their annual meeting and to look around the site, The Hunter Archaeological Society visited also, as did members of the Escape Project (a programme commissioned by Derbyshire Dales Community Housing run in partnership with Derbyshire Dales CVS for people in supported accommodation).

We also had a group of home educators who came once then returned because they had such such a good time the first time.

Individuals & Families

There were several options for individuals to get involved in the project:

  • As a volunteer. Volunteers either filled in an expression of interest form or simply contacted the project manager, Dr Catherine Parker Heath. They then took part as little or as much as they wanted or could. All in all we had over 50 volunteers take part.

  • As a visitor. Individuals and families arranged to visit the site for a day or half a day, with some of the children who had participated with their school bringing their parents back after school on a different day.

  • On the Open Days. Many visitors – individuals and families – attended one of our open days.


We set out to overcome as many of the disabling aspects of an archaeological project as we could, so that as many people as possible were able to visit, take part and see what we were doing.  In order to do this, we worked with accessibility consultant, Phil Chambers, who specialises in accessibility to rural heritage sites. As well as making reasonable practical adjustments, our core team of volunteers also underwent training.

Click here to see what the site and location is like, and what facilities we put in place to try and ensure this was a project that welcomed everyone, enabling them to take something positive away, whether they were wheel-chair users, had difficulty moving around,  were visually impaired or hearing impaired, were diagnosed with ASD, ADHD, or a  multitude of other things, or whether they were just who they are, with or without a label.

All dogs on a lead were welcome and of course that meant assistance dogs.

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