TillVAS Till Valley Archaeological Society
TillVAS             Till Valley Archaeological Society

Health & Safety Policies

Health & Safety Policies will be displayed before all TillVAS activities and participants will be asked to sign a sheet to confirm that they have read the appropriate policy. There is also a Guidance Note at the end of these policies for members who attend outings that involve walking, coping with rough or uneven ground or climbing or descending slopes.

General Health & Safety Risk Assessment



On public roads or car parks, park sensibly/safely, always considering other road users.

Do not block accesses. Leave extra space for wide farm vehicles.



Dogs should be kept on a leash and under control at all times.

Be aware that there may be grazing animals on access fields or on site. Avoid herds of cows with young calves.



Wear appropriate clothing for weather conditions—warm/waterproof clothes in wet weather, sun cream and hats in hot weather.


Site security

Close all access gates as required.

When field-walking, ensure that all equipment is collected and returned to a central point.


Slipping and tripping

Wear appropriate footwear; be aware of uneven/wet ground surfaces.


Limits of access

Stay within the designated boundaries of the site, keeping with the group as far as possible.

Use designated routes; do not climb fences or walls.



Be aware of possible deep excavations.


Taking photographs

Be aware of surrounding hazards whilst positioning to take photographs.



Wash hands or use hand gel before eating.


Cuts and abrasions

Be aware of sharp objects. Cover open cuts and grazes with a waterproof dressing as a precaution agains contracting Leptospirosis (Weils disease).



Washing of Finds or Other Work at Etal Rhodes (the TillVAS store)



Small area of rough ground by ruined buildings.

Otherwise park in front of barns at road and walk up track. Park sensibly/safely, always considering other road users.

Do not block accesses. Leave extra space for wide farm vehicles.


Site security

The site is on a working farm.

Dogs should be kepton a leash and under control at all times.

Be aware that there are grazing animals in fields next to the site and also in adjacent barns.

Stay within the designated boundaries of the site and use designated routes.

Close all gates/doors when accessing water supply within adjacent barn.


Slipping and tripping

Access to barn is across rough uneven ground.

Be aware of drop at side of concrete access ramp.

Wear appropriate footwear; be aware of uneven/wet ground surfaces.


Working area

Wear old clothing or overalls with strong shoes/boots or wellingtons.

Wear warm clothing in cold weather.

Wear protective gloves when working.

Wear eye protection when cleaning dry finds.

Be aware of uneven/wet surface in barn with poor lighting and trip hazards.

Ensure layout tables are stable and accessible.

Do not lift heavy loads on your own.

Guidance Note for members who attend outings that involve walking, coping with rough or uneven ground or climbing or descending slopes


If you have any doubts about your ability to go on an outing, the Society would respectfully ask you to err on the side of caution before booking so as not to spoil your own enjoyment and that of others in the group. The organiser of the outing is always happy to discuss any concerns that you may have before the outing and to offer advice. The Society reserves the right to refuse any person who is obviously unfit or unsuitably dressed for a particular outing.


If you find yourself struggling to keep up with the group whilst on an outing, please speak to the leader of the group who will be able to suggest somewhere suitable for you to wait. Your safety and wellbeing is of paramount importance but the interests of the group as a whole must be recognised.




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© TillVAS


Tickets for James IV mmorial lecture now on sale.

7th October Coldstream Community Centre 2.30

Dr Alex Hildred




Tickets £6 - available from Maureen



Dates for the dig at Mardon


The dig to revisit our iron age site on Mardon farm will run from 25th August to 5th September.

For details please visit the archaeology page.

Crookham Church

On Sunday 19th August there will be an "85th Birthday Garden Party" at Crookham URC, beginning with a 1930's style tea at 3pm, organised by the Rev. Mary Taylor.  This will be followed at 4pm by a talk by Mike Keating on "The First Church at Crookham" and at 4.40pm, a talk by Antony Chessell on "The Modern Church at Crookham".   Both talks are based on information collected by TillVAS for the "Branxton and Crookham Village Atlas Project."   There is also the "Flodden Peace Garden" to wander around.
All are welcome.   There is no charge for this event, but donations towards to the upkeep of the Church will be most welcome.

Kirknewton Sheepdog Trials and Heritage Open Day

Sunday 19th August

Local History Displays and films:

Special showing of ‘Night of Years’ 

(The story of Josephine Butler)

Find out about Bob Fraser, farm improvements, the Bondager farming system and visit St Gregory’s Church.

(  service at 11 a.m. )

 Free entry.

Light Refreshments          Northumbrian Pipers

Visit the Trials to see the dogs in action.

Dog trials from 9a.m.    Heritage Day 10 -4



Richard Carlton will be giving a talk on the 2018 Holystone Roman Road Dig on Wednesday 22 August at 7:30pm in Holystone Church.  All welcome.

Bowsden History Group - A Tale of Two Mills. (Spindleston and Waren) 3rd Sept 2018 7.30 Bowsden Village Hall.

The next TillVAS talk is on Weds. 5th September at 7.30pm in Crookham Village Hall when Dr Brian Moffat  from Edinburgh will tell us about ‘Medieval Medicine and its use in the present day’.

The report for Mardon has now been completed. See the Archaeology section for more details. HLF has awarded a grant to TillVAS for further work in autumn  2018.


Many thanks to all who attended our AGM and talk where Dr Richard Carlton gave a very good account of the Mardon Dig. For more details see 'reports on events'

Data Protection - please see the new TillVAS policy statement on the membership page


The Society has an extensive collection of documents and photographs held in its secure archives. These are invaluable for members wishing to study the local history of the area or wishing to gather information for e.g. the  Village Atlas Project. Please click on the tag above to see the catalogues. Anyone wishing to access the archives should contact the Society's Archivist, Maureen Charlton or the Assistant Archivist, Julia Day.


Please see a new section on the website—click on the appropriate tab above.  Please let us have your thoughts, in prose or in verse.


There are some important meetings of the Activity Groups scheduled over the next few months. Please click on the appropriate tag above, which will take you to the Village Atlas page and give you all the dates, times and places of the meetings.


Please click on the Latest Newsletter page to see information for the current month.


Click on Reports on Events, above, for detailed accounts and press reports.


The Society operates a bookstall at all its meetings.

Items for sale include:-

1. The Society's first publication Breamish and Till: From Source to Tweed at £10 per copy and

2. Vivian Wilcock's Andrew Todd 1844-1908 ( with research input by TillVAS members) at £5 per copy.

See the Publications page for more about these books. Copies of Breamish and Till are also available in Cornhill Village Shop and the Lavender Tea Rooms and Village Shop in Etal.


There are also archaeological books and journals for sale. Net proceeds of sale go to TillVAS funds.