A post by Gemma Lewis, Curator (Museum of Archaeology and Biosciences)
Since 2008, Gary Bankhead has been diving under Elvet Bridge in Durham City, bringing to the surface over 13,500 objects. The objects date from the 12th century to the modern day, although the majority date to the 17th century. The objects range from dentures to pilgrim badges, and from a toy of Homer Simpson to Tudor buttons. The collection has been described as ‘a major research facility, probably the largest collection of late- and post-medieval finds in the North of England: a unique regional/national resource’. In 2010, Gary created the Dive into Durham project, to research, catalogue and display this important assemblage of objects. To date, Gary has uncovered 454 buttons, 36 pieces of ammunition, 329 buckles, 344 cloth seals, 512 (pre-decimal) coins, 149 trade tokens, 3,459 brass pins, and many more objects. The numbers are staggering, but it is not the quantity that it is important, it is the potential of these objects to change our understanding of the history of Durham.
Continue reading “Gary Bankhead and the River Wear Assemblage at the Museum of Archaeology”