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Key Dates

Milestones in the Digital Dig Team calendar

Tuesday 20th March - Sunday 25th March

DigVentures Survey Week!

Lancashire has one of the highest concentrations of hunter-gatherer sites in Europe. 8,000 years ago, it was prime territory. Today, it still bristles with the remains of ancient hunting camps... if you know where to look.In March, DigVentures is heading to Spodden Valley to begin a MASSIVE survey of its hunter-gatherer sites. To do it, we're going to need LOADS of people.

December 2016

Survey Weekend with our wonderful Venturers

Digventures completes a survey weekend in collaboration with the Mid Pennine Arts to record the condition of known archaeological sites, and to locate further sites of interest.

20th Century

Military archaeology left behind after the World Wars

We have military archaeology from the early 20th century in the area, for example anti-invasion pillboxes as well as important munitions factories.

19th Century

The Industrial Revolution leaves its mark on Spodden

Several quarry sites are built including a well preserved sandstone quarry; Thurns Head Quarry.As industry progresses and transport of goods becomes central to the economy, the enormous Healy Dell Viaduct is built, an extraordinary feat of engineering, the viaduct still stands today, although the railway line is disused.

18th Century

Textiles manufacture picks up in Spodden

Several cotton and wool mills are built in the valley as the area becomes a centre of textile production.


Brown-Wardle Farm is built by the Stott-Milne family

The early 18th Century, the Brown-Wardle family built their farm. This is where DigVentures will be excavating in May 2018.


Medieval charters

the medieval documentation for the area is striking: nearly 100 charters relating to Whitworth alone are recorded in the Coucher Book of Whalley Abbey relating to grants of land to the Abbey from Sokemen (freeholders of Viking descent).


Spotland definitely exists!

Spotland is a settled place, recorded for the first time in the Domesday Book commissioned by William the Conqueror. Whitworth is recorded as a manor, and was part of the township of Spotland in the Parish of Rochdale.

10,000 years ago

Mesolithic hunting camps

Mesolithic hunter-gatherers were making arrowheads, spear tips and knives in the area, and presumably using them!

Archaeology / In Your Hands