Wind farm money to help dig up the past

Coldingham Priory.
Coldingham Priory.

A team from Durham University are on the hunt for evidence of an Anglican monastery in the area around Coldingham Priory.

Friends of Coldingham Priory have successfully applied for grant funding from a number of sources, including community wind farm funds such as AES Dronehill Community Fund and Fallago Environment Fund, in their quest to promote the historical and archaeological importance of the Priory.

Thanks to a recent £2,500 grant from AES Dronehill Durham University will carry out desktop research on land adjacent to the Priory, assessing its archaeological significance.

They will look at the nature and extent of any sub-surface features of potential archaeological significance, with a specific aim of locating any remains that may confirm the existence of an Anglo Saxon monastery dating back to 800 AD.

David Campbell of the Friends of Priory said: “The grant from the Drone Hill Community Fund enables the Friends to pay for important survey work on land adjacent to the ancient Coldingham Priory.

“The work is to be undertaken by a team from Durham University. It will establish the extent of earlier buildings near the present Priory Church, possibly of very early ecclesiastical buildings.

“Further extending the local community’s and historical researchers’ understanding of Coldingham’s ancient Christian history will contribute to our local identity and to the tourist interest in this part of east Berwickshire.”

Claire Addison of AES Wind Generation said; “We are pleased that this latest funding round attracted a wide range of applications. The funding to Friends of Coldingham Priory is a great example of how the fund can support the communities around Dronehill.”

“We hope that others will be encouraged by the success and apply to the fund before the next deadline in September.”

The Drone Hill Wind Farm fund provides a minimum of £40,000 a year for 25 years, shared among four community councils; Reston and Auchencrow, Coldingham, Cockburnspath and Grantshouse.