Since 2011 The University of Sheffield has been undertaking a long-term research programme at the monastic site of Thornton Abbey, including a topographical and geophysical survey of the entire precinct. In its third year, the field school includes targeted excavation of Medieval and post-dissolution features in order to gain a better understanding of the site’s long history.
In previous years the field school has located and excavated the monastic great barn, a 16th-century bakehouse and Tudor formal garden. This season excavation will continue at the site of the abbot’s lodge – an area that has seen no previous survey or excavation work. The other major excavation will take place at what is thought to be the site of Sir Vincent Skinner’s great Jacobean mansion.
Work is supervised by experienced staff from the University of Sheffield, and volunteers participate in all key activities. No previous experience is required and younger participants are welcome (minimum age is 17 unaccompanied). The residential fee includes supervision, materials, all food and camping.