2.1 Open Hills, Old Ways & Commons
This project explored the archaeology of the landscape using imagery specially captured by aerial laser scanners. The data was used by members of the community to discover and interpret the physical remains of past cultures visible in the landscape of today.
The University of Chester provided advice and research to bring together communities with the history of local hills, in new discoveries, exploring and sharing stories from both recent and distant past, including:
- An airborne LiDAR (Light Detection And Ranging) survey of the whole area as an important resource for local volunteers, community groups and specialists for many local projects. LiDAR is a remote sensing technique giving a detailed three-dimensional model of the land surface, which can find hard-to-detect historic and archaeological features
- Surveying and recording discoveries on the hills and commons and along ancient routes, revealed by LiDAR, maps and other documents
- Upgrading parts of a well-used route for less able users
- Learnt archaeological skills to find unknown or little known historic features
- Explored up to 12 areas of open access land and revealing the links between the valley settlements and the hills, commons and ancient routes
- Shared discoveries through activities, bringing together people from all backgrounds and interests in local communities
To get involved:
As the Landscape Partnership Scheme comes to a close (March 2018), this valuable work is continuing through a new group, the Shropshire Hills & Marches Community Archaeology Group. To find out more information please email Mike Greene, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Follow the links below for:
Project Resources – to help you carry out your own research
- A Guide to Using Google Earth to view LiDAR
- A Guide to marking sites using the Open Hills LiDAR viewer
- Photograph register
- Site Record Form
- LiDAR web viewer
If you find new sites, you can check whether they are already listed by Shropshire Council’s Historic Environment Record [HER], either by visiting the HER itself, or by searching on the Heritage Gateway website:
For sites in the Powys area, you can check CPAT’s online search portal, at:
Another useful resource is the Guide to searching the Historic Environment Record online – download the pdf here.
Field surveys are ongoing by volunteers, led by local archaeologist Mike Greene. Using LiDAR and old maps points of interest are notes and field visit arranged to investigate further. The following sites have been surveyed:
All features of interest are sent to the County’s Historic Environmental Records to update the records.
Old Ways – Hugh Hannaford, Shropshire Council archaeologist, and Bob Sylvestor, from Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust, led a series of interpretative walks along the most culturally and historically significant old ways in the Scheme area:
These Old Ways will be interpreted in a booklet which will be available in Spring 2018.