Excavation at Rouken Glen Rook End Mill Site

Following an assessment carried out on the site by ACFA members, an excavation is planned to explore the origin and form of this severely ruined building.  Rouken Glen Park has been awarded a Heritage Lottery Fund Parks for People grant and is undertaking a programme of events and activities that will explore and record the rich cultural heritage contained within the park. This excavation will focus on determining the location and date of the former Rook End Mill. For more information and to book a place on the week-long excavation starting on Sunday August 24, which will run each day from 10am, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Members can find more information in the Members' Area.

Archaeology Day at Greenbank House

ACFA was represented at the recent Archaeology Day at the National Trust for Scotland's Greenbank House on the southside of Glasgow.  There were a number of activities for people to try including three exploratory trenches, clay pipe making workshops and a children's sand excavation. A number of other archaeology and history groups were represented.  Unfortunately the weather wasn't kind and the competing attractions of the Commonwealth Games led to lower attendance than hoped.

Treasure Trove in Scotland

ACFA recently contributed to a consultation on a review of Treasure Trove in Scotland.  The revised code of practice that resulted is now available at http://www.qltr.gov.uk/content/code-practice-treasure-trove-scotland-0 .

Volunteers Needed for Bute Survey

Volunteers are being sought for two days of surveying on Tuesday 15th and Wednesday 16th July. The main target will be a walk through the Mount Stuart grounds (just the coastal strip), starting at Kerrycroy and working south. Further details for members can be found in the Members' Area.  Other expressions of interest should be sent to the secretary This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . The church in the abolished village of Scoulag is pictured below. 

Rona 2014

In one of the best weeks enjoyed so far this spring, a team of nine returned to Rona, to complete the survey of the final township of Doire na Guaile in the far south of the island. As this involved a walk – in of almost an hour each day, it was planned that work and recovery days would be spaced out, and believed that with about 40 structures to plan at 1:100, we would we looking at a two year programme.

In the event, the unparalleled weather and the enthusiasm of the teams meant that the whole settlement was planned in three days, and some teams even returned for a fourth to extend the survey to a neighbouring tidal islet, and to survey some newer settlement revealed during the walks in.

Libby King, Margaret Gardiner and Ian Marshall were co-directors, Dr Heather James as photographer and ‘boldly – goer’, Richard Anderson, Sue Hothersall, Stuart McKey, Dugie and Anne McInnes. With the free days, parties returned to Braigh and the north tip of the island – and highlights of the social calendar included the annual baited creel competition, the best in show creel, local stone and ropework display competition (won by Skyescape Cottage by not telling anyone there was a competition) and an epic croquet game with no rules barred tournament.

Good company and five days of glorious spring sun have encouraged discussion on a final return to mop up and eliminate some of the remoter bays and islets, as well as the environs of Acairseid Mhor next year.

Introduction to Archaeological Field Survey

Another group of would-be field archaeologists took part in this year's weekend field survey course in association with Glasgow University's Centre for Open Studies.  Held on Saturday and Sunday of the May holiday weekend the weather wasn't as kind as last year but nothing dampened the group's enthusiasm.

After a classroom-based introduction the group embarked on a guided walk round the archaeological highlights of Pollok Park including a never previously surveyed enigmatic stone garden feature.  On the Sunday three survey teams were formed, each under the supervision of an ACFA tutor, and set to work getting to grips with the skills of surveying and drawing.  The teams proved that they had 'the right stuff' by working through torrential rain until they had completed their drawings.  

Proposed day trip to SERF Excavations

A day visit to the SERF excavations at Forteviot has been proposed for either the 27th or 28th June. More details can be found in the Members' Area.

Scotland's Historic Environment

Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop, has announced the establishment of a Strategic Forum for Scotland's Historic Environment which will facilitate the closer working of heritage organisations and other bodies to ensure Scotland's historic environment is understood, valued, cared for, protected and enhanced. 

Historic Environment Scotland is the name of the new lead public body to be formed from the merger of Historic Scotland and RCAHMS. Information on the strategy can be found here .

Stage 1 of the Bill and the report will be debated in the Parliament on the afternoon of Thursday June 19 following which, if Parliament agrees, the Bill will proceed to Stage 2 where amendments can be proposed.  This stage is expected to begin in mid August. Any MSP, or preferably a member of the Education and Culture Committee, can be approached to propose an amendment.  Information on the Bill and report can be found here and here.

ACFA contributed to the original consultation (available in the Members' Area) but if any member has comments on the report or would like to suggest amendments to the  Bill as described above please contact the committee.  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Rouken Glen Update

Following the recent launch of Dig It! 2015 and the Rouken Glen Project, an assessment was made of the site of the Rouken Mill. The remains proved to be more substantial than first thought although the site is quite precarious and threatened by saplings and encroaching shrubbery. Photographs of the site have been posted in the gallery. The mill is possibly the oldest structure in the park, being associated with the original Rouken settlement first noted on the Pont map.  Following sensitive clearance of the site, to be arranged by the park rangers, it is proposed to survey the mill and its surroundings which include two possible small associated structures and extensive rig and furrow.  Thanks to Ian Marshall for photographs.

Rouken Glen Project and Launch of Dig It! 2015

ACFA had a strong presence at the launch of Dig It! 2015, the year of Scottish Archaeology, on Saturday March 15 at Rouken Glen Park.  Our stall attracted a lot of interest and committee members and other ACFA members had a great opportunity to network with a wide range of Scottish archaeology groups as well as talking to members of the public about our work. Highlights of the day included demonstrations of kite aerial photography and a medieval re-enactment group.

ACFA members led a walk-over of the archaeology of the park followed in the afternoon by a training session introducing a group of volunteers to the joy of field survey which was an authentic ACFA experience conducted in the teeth of a howling gale and threatening rain.  On Sunday Ian Marshall, Susan Hunter and Janie Munro returned to the park to 'reccie' sites for future surveying as part of the Rouken Glen Adopt-a-Monument project.