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Leny Woods archaeology activities

As an archaeology volunteer you will work as part of a team to survey the cultural heritage of Callander by taking part in walkover surveys, historic woodland assessments, and eventually excavations.

A range of archaeology workshops and training opportunities, funded by Forestry Commission Scotland and run by Northlight Heritage, will be taking place in March. Leny Woods is situated at the Highland Boundary Fault and holds archaeological sites from the prehistoric period, Roman occupation, Medieval period, and beyond. This programme of training will help us discover more about this unique area and develop your skills in archaeological research and surveying.

We have a range of workshops and volunteers are welcome to sign up for as many days as they would like! The programme is structured so that volunteers will be able to develop their skills with help from the experts at Northlight Heritage.

Project Design (Sat 2nd March)

At this indoor desk-based session, volunteers will learn how to plan an archaeology project from beginning to end. Experts from Northlight Heritage will be on hand to answer any of your questions, and the group will analyse existing projects to show the different ways to approach community-based archaeology.

Heritage Audit and Archive Workshop (Sun 3rd March)

At this second indoor desk-based session, Northlight Heritage will show us how we can better understand the heritage and archaeology of the area before going out on the field. This will involve researching online sources to find out more about Leny Woods and Callander, as well as getting hands-on with records from local archives with the help of a professional archivist.

Walkover Survey (Thurs 14th March – Sun 17th March)

This four-day outdoor training session run by Northlight Heritage will give volunteers an opportunity to develop new skills in surveying an archaeological site on-foot. We will record the visible archaeological features on the landscape by sketching, photographing, and geo-locating using GPS and Ordnance Survey Grids. On 16th March, volunteers will also be able to get involved in an assessment of the historic trees in Leny Woods, which will help with historic woodland management. If appropriate tree specimens are found, our specialist will show volunteers how dendrochronology (tree-ring dating) can allow us to determine the exact year trees were formed.

Measured Survey (Thurs 21st March – Sat 23rd March)

This three-day outdoor training session will build upon the walkover training by surveying specific sites in more detail using both traditional and modern methods. Volunteers will have the opportunity to create more detailed measured surveys of sites using plane tables and learn about more modern methods, for example, total station surveys or photogrammetry.

Woodland Walk (Sun 24th March)

Our specialist will present the findings of the historic woodland assessment undertaken on 16th March by leading a guided walk around Leny Woods. Volunteers will be able to find out more about the character, history, and significance of the historic woodland heritage in Callander’s Leny Woods.

Individuals, families, and groups of people are all welcome to get involved and volunteer. All activities will be run by a leader and full instruction and supervision will be provided. No experience is needed!

Sign up to our mailing list to receive full details about these volunteering activities.

If you’re interested in finding out more about this opportunity, please contact Julie on or 01389 727 723.


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