First Call


Protecting vulnerable earthworks from illegal off-road activity

We are currently updating twelve management plans for scheduled monuments in the North York Moors National Park. Most of these monuments have suffered from bracken and gorse encroachment and thanks to English Heritage funding, are now being managed to remove the damaging vegetation. However a recurring theme is the damage to sites by illegal off road use; attempts to keep off-roaders away is proving challenging!


Parkgate, Darlington conservation area character appraisal

We have just finished a conservation area character appraisal on the Parkgate area of Darlington. Darlington Borough Council will shortly be consulting on this before finalising the document. This is your chance to let the council know what you value about Parkgate. We were rather taken by the fine Edwardian Architecture....


Bee Boles Wobble, but they don't fall down!

Work at the unique set of bee boles near Glasidale is now complete. This project, funded by Natural England on behalf of the landowner, has funded a conservation management plan prepared by AE, trial excavations and the conservation of the wall containing the bee boles. The wall contains up to 70 recesses (bee boles) for bee skeps, possibly 18th century in date and is now fully conserved by dry stone wall specialist Donald Gunn. The difficulty in conserving a wall that has been through many phases of rebuilding, is to retain its archaeological information and its characteristic rustic look while introducing structural stability and longevity. We reckon Donald has done a marvellous job. The restoration works also uncovered the remains of a special knife apparently used to slice honeycomb out of the skep.


Scargill Castle has won a County Durham Environment Award

Scargill Castle has won a County Durham Environment Award and was shortlisted In the national Heritage Angels Award. To find out about our project at Scargill Castle click here (


Work on the forthcoming Limestone Landscapes

Work on the forthcoming Limestone Landscapes book is continuing. The publication date is expected to be available in mid 2014.


Our contribution to Donhead’s latest tome

Our contribution to Donhead’s latest tome on architecture has just been published – Heaton, M and Hardie, C ‘Survey and Analysis’ in Campbell, J. W. P and Tutton, M 2014 Staircases. History, Repair and Conservation ISBN 978-1-873394-97-7. The hardback costs £65 and can be purchased here


Wykeham Dykes prehistoric boundaries

Wykeham Dykes near Scarborough - pondering a difficult balance between the archaeology and the wildlife.


The Institute for Archaeologists

The Institute for Archaeologists has been granted a royal charter of incorporation and will now become a Chartered Institute for Archaeologists. Find out more at: