Digging up Coldstream’s past

A major community archaeological effort is about to be made in an attempt to unearth the history of Coldstream Priory.

By The Newsroom
Friday, 8th August 2014, 12:00 pm

From August 22-25, The Flodden 1513 Coldstream Priory Project gets underway, led by Dr Chris Burgess, who will work with local residents to investigate and record the remains of the priory, home to Cistercian nuns from 1150 to 1588.

The site of the priory is well known, as is the connection between the Battle of Flodden and the priory’s Prioress Isabelle Hoppringle, who is thought to have ‘spied’ for the English both before and after the events of August and September 1513, and carried the fallen Scots noblemen back onto Scottish soil for burial.

But there are still plenty of secrets to uncover, including the extent of the abbey and its surviving remains.

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The dig’s organisers want to hear from you if your house is in the area that was originally part of the priory. For example, you might have stones from the priory in your garden, or even surviving walls on your property that may have been part of it.

You uncover and record history in your very own backyard or assist in the community dig designated area of the town.

Chris Burgess, archaeologist for the Flodden 1513 Project, said: “This is the first time we have held an archaeological event that will take place in people’s gardens in Coldstream.

“The entire commemoration of Flodden has always been about the community, and this archaeological event is no different. We are hoping the whole community will get involved either offering to dig themselves in their own gardens, or joining us to dig in a public area, possibly on the Leet Green. Before excavating on the public parts of the site however we hope to be able to carry out some geophysics to help identify features on the site.”

If your house or garden has some connection with Coldstream Priory or is in that part of the town and you would like to join in please let the organisers know, or if you would be interested in joining in the work in the public areas, or for further information please contact us by email - [email protected]