Fascinating tales of treasures of past rescued from sea

Morpeth and District U3A

Due to an unexpected emergency, Philippa Cockburn replaced Dr Clive Waddington at Morpeth U3A’s recent meeting.

Ms Cockburn is the Assistant Projects Officer for Archaeological Research Services, based at Hebburn, and the intriguing title of her talk was Rescued From The Sea.

Together with Northumberland Wildlife Trust and funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, archaeological remains at Low Hauxley have been excavated before being destroyed by the North Sea.

Evidence of settlements and burials have been found under the sea, just out of Amble. After a man reported seeing something strange in the cliff-face a stone-lined box was found, which turned out to be a burial box, complete with skeleton. Many time periods were then uncovered, which included Mesolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age-Roman and Medieval.

A complete stone beaker and the skeleton of a young man ranked among the finds, as did Rock Art from a burial cairn. Iron Age-Roman period, with finds included pottery, a copper alloy ring and a bone pin.

Now the community has become involved in this search for the past and volunteers monitor the coastline. Schoolchildren have also made a film of this archaeological find.

Ms Cockburn also brought along a recently-published book with the same title as her talk, Rescued From The Sea. It was written by Dr Clive Waddington and published last year.

The vote of thanks was well expressed by Maryan Duckworth, the Group Co-ordinator.

The next General Meeting will be on Tuesday, at Morpeth Rugby Club, when Ian Leech, Editor of Inside Morpeth, will tell all about his life as a news gatherer. For more information on Morpeth U3A, please phone 01670 505899.