Families dig in for archaeology weekend at Ellington Park

Children's fun at the Ellington Park dig weekend Photo Brian Whitehead

Families have turned out to take part in an archaeology weekend at Ellington Park in Ramsgate.

The Trust for Thanet Archaeology is running two days of information sharing and exploration on behalf of the Friends of Ellington Park.

Today’s (February 24) events included a archaeology zone with a pop up museum and children’s fun such as dig boxes and skeletons.

Photo Brian Whitehead

Two test pits have also been dug and are being explored for evidence of early farmhouses, agricultural buildings and Ellington House – all of which have been recorded historically on maps.

A geophysical survey is being carried out as part of this excavation.

Photo Brian Whitehead

Talks and tours have also taken place following a route of the hidden Anglo-Saxon settlement at Ellington, the Medieval village at St Lawrence and detailing the historical formation of Ellington Park.

Another day of digging, followed by a discoveries round up talk at 3pm, takes place tomorrow from 10am to 4pm.

Significant finds from the exploration will also be on display.

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The Friends of Ellington Park are carrying out a three-year project to renovate and restore parts of the park.

The two phase process began in January last year when the Ellington Park project secured design and development funding to ensure all aspects of the parks heritage, features and its current use are considered in the design.

These designs will be submitted to HLF in spring / summer this year, for final approval. If agreed, works will start on the park in late this year.

Photo Brian Whitehead

Heritage Lottery Funding will renovate the bandstand; restore the best features of the original 1893 Joseph Cheal landscape scheme; improve play facilities and provide a cafe and toilets. There will also be a five year scheme of activity in the park.

Thanet District Council and Friends of Ellington Park are working  with design team Landscape Architects  Allen Scott, architects  Clague and quantity surveyor Wooley Coles, to design the park and unlock a £2million investment.

Photo Brian Whitehead

Ellington Park is 126 years old. The late Victorian and Edwardian landscaped area is across 13 acres of land. It was laid out in 1893 on what was once part of the estate surrounding Ellington House.

The park was designed by the Victorian landscape company Joseph Cheal and Son, known for their work at Hever Castle and Kirkstall Abbey.

Photo Brian Whitehead

Today, many of the heritage features of the park remain, including over 390 trees, which dapple the rolling slopes of the park enjoyed by some 9,000 visitors per year.