Location: All Saints, North Street, York
Dates: Summer Session: 26 June - 15 September Spring Session: TBC- email [email protected] to register interest Weekend Courses: TBC- email [email protected] to register interest Post- excavation course: TBC- email [email protected] to register interest
Cost: From £50 for a taster course and £230 for 1 week. Post-excavation course £180.
Age: 16+ or 14+ if accompanied by parent/guardian on a course.
Training / Experience: None required - all skill levels covered.
Organization: York Archaeological Trust
Name: Archaeology Live!
Address: Archaeology Live!, York Archaeological Trust, 47 Aldwark, York YO1 7BX
Email: [email protected]


All Saints Excavations (Photo: David Dodwell)

Now heading into our 4th year at All Saints, North Street and our 17th consecutive year of Archaeology Live! Based in the grounds of one of York’s finest medieval Churches the site boasts archaeological features from medieval pits to 19th century burials while finds include Roman and Viking pottery, coins, buttons, jewellery and the occasional Neolithic object. We give people the opportunity to take part in all stages of fieldwork from excavation to recording, as well as post excavation work. For those interested in osteology this year offers the unique opportunity to excavate, record, and lift burials. With medieval layers and burials to lift this promises to be an exciting year for Archaeology Live!

Archaeology Live!:
Facebook Group:
Facebook Pagee:
Twitter: @ArchaeologyLive


  1. Vicky
    April 25, 2007 @ 4:34 pm


    I’ve dug in York for the last two summers. YAT are an excellent organisation and their training digs are certainly value for money. Teaching is of a high standard, with many experts brought in from outside of the dig itself. Accommodation can by booked too, which adds to the sense of teamwork. Above all else, there is an emphasis on having fun whislt learning!


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Book early to get accommodation at the university.


  2. Ellen
    May 1, 2007 @ 4:35 pm


    I’ve dug with on YAT training digs for the past three years and can honestly say I’ve never learnt more about digging anywhere else, including at uni! Everyone on site is hugely friendly and the staff make sure you get to experience every aspect of excavation. A multi-period urban site also means there loads to dig and no-one is ever short of anything to do. I’ve always had loads of fun in York and would recommend the Archaeology Live digs to anyone.


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Try to stay at the uni with the majority of the group, great team spirit on site.


  3. Pam
    May 1, 2007 @ 4:37 pm


    I first became involved with Archaeology Live! on the St Leonard’s training dig in 2003 when I was studying part time and looking to change career in my mid-30s ! I’ve been involved in some way or another each year since. I am now working for YAT on the Hungate site and am involved with training and public access. So really I am a good advert for Archaeology Live – it works !!

    The training I received was brilliant as it included all the skills I would need to be a professional archaeologist. Archaeology Live is unusual in that it provides an opportunity to be trained in single context recording on deep urban stratigraphy – a really useful skill / advantage on your CV when applying for your first digging jobs.

    Even if you don’t want to make archaeology a career and you just like digging up and learning about old stuff as a hobby or holiday activity, then Archaeology Live! at Hungate is a really good dig to choose. The training staff make the learning side challenging but fun at the same time and there is a very active social life whether you are staying at the accomm or not.


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Come and see/experience it for yourself, I doubt you’ll regret it !


  4. Sophie
    May 6, 2007 @ 4:36 pm


    I’ve been on two previous York digs and I can safely say that Toby is a legend!!


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Get involved with everything. Even if you don’t take up the offer for accommodation get to know the people who have and join them for the numerous nights out on the town!!


  5. Laura
    May 13, 2007 @ 4:37 pm


    I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of the training dig and by the end of it I didn’t want to go home again. Every activity was enjoyable and I learned so much about archaeology from it. As well as covering most areas of field archaeology we also did some work on finds analysis, tours around the city of York and much more. Whether you are a beginner or experienced you will definitely enjoy this dig.


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Try and stay at the university accommodation. I stayed separate to everyone else and felt I missed out on a lot. Although the Saturday bbq was lots of fun 🙂


  6. Caroline
    May 27, 2007 @ 4:38 pm


    My first dig was with YAT and it was fantastic. None of the other digs I have been on have matched the quality of the training you get on YAT. You are able to learn so many skills and working on a complex multi-period site is an opportunity not to be missed.

    It initially may seem more expensive than many other digs- but it is so worth it- especially if you want to get into archaeology. Everyone is so friendly, and willing to help.


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Make the most of the experts there and ask loads of questions about all aspects of archaeology.


  7. Katie Purdy
    September 9, 2007 @ 4:39 pm


    This was the first dig i had ever been on and it was amazing! The training was fantastic and it wasn’t just about digging. We got to try all sorts and it was nice not to be the only person there who hadn’t tried it. As well as the digging the nights on the town were also a highlight!

    I would highly recommend this dig to anyone, even if you have done a bit of Archaeology before it’s a really good dig and good value. It was so good i can’t wait to book again!


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? If you’ve never been on a Dig this is the place to go!


  8. Katie
    September 9, 2007 @ 4:40 pm


    It was my first time trying Archaeology and I loved every minute of it. I got to try all sort of methods and practices, not just digging and was never unsure of what i was doing because of the excellent training i was given.

    Compared with some of the digs ive heard about this one is the best for training and it’s not just for Archaeology students either. I met all sorts of interesting people from all walks of life and all different ages.

    As well as the training the people there are fantastic and the social side to the trip i.e the nights out in York, also made my time there all the more fantastic.

    I would highly recommend this dig to anyone, whether they’ve tried Archaeology or not. I’ve only just got back from my week there and i cant wait to book for next year!


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? I would highly recommend this for anyone who hasn’t tried Archaeology before


  9. Emily
    February 12, 2009 @ 4:40 pm


    There is always plenty to do, both on site and off. It’s engaging archaeology which will have you coming back every year for more!


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? Perfect for anyone interested in archaeology, whether they are complete beginners or have studied the subject for decades!


  10. Simon
    August 21, 2009 @ 4:41 pm


    A truly fantastic opportunity for anyone to have a go at proper site excavation, be they completely new to archaeology, or already have a few experiences under their belt! The team at York Archaeological Trust provide top class tuition/guidance along with utterly tremendous site facilities, centering on the converted warehouse that is the site office complex. This being your first port of call, it immediately instills a sense of professionalism, without seeming too restrictive on the complete novice. Having undertaken a 3-week course at Hungate in the summer of 07, I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting some good experience of urban excavation, working alongside professionals and students alike.

    The atmosphere on site is always very friendly, and the YAT staff are always on hand to provide guidance (and oftentimes amusement!). The equipment and site in general are kept to impecable standards, and it really does instill a feeling of “proper” archaeology. Hard hats, safety boots, and hi-vis vests all round, health and safety procedures are kept to at all times, once again though without feeling restrictive. There’s also an Excavation Handbook available that makes working on site very efficient, and if in doubt about anything it can provide a step of assistance before having to bother one of the staff. Top class stuff!


    Would you recommend it? Yes
    What is your top bit of advice? If you’re planning on travelling to site each day (as I did), just let staff know, and they’ll be aware that you might not make it to the morning brief on time. This especially applies if you’re going to York via train, as we all know trains can be late, and it’s about a 10min run from the station to site.


  11. Emma
    July 12, 2011 @ 9:23 am

    I did this last year and absolutely loved it. I learnt so much there in two weeks, possibly learnt more about archaeology there then I did from reading books and doing essays for 3yrs in college! I would strongly recommend this dig to anyone. I loved every minute of it and would go back myself (but unfortunately I can’t get back there this year as I’m doing a dig somewhere else)


  12. Steve Mcmillan-Johnstone
    July 15, 2011 @ 8:11 pm

    I dug at hungate for 2009 & 2010 and am going back for 2011, the training is great as are the team of resident staff, it has really opened my mind to all sorts of possibilities when I retire in 2015.


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