Community Archaeology will increase training opportunities in local heritage skills. Throughout the scheme area, local people will be introduced to the range of sources that are available for them to find out about their local heritage.
The River Tees Rediscovered Landscape contains archaeological sites of all periods, many of which are clearly visible.
The earliest of these are Bronze Age Round Barrows at Cliffe near Piercebridge which date from about 1800 BC. These overlook the site of the Roman fort, bridges and settlement at Piercebridge. As part of the project geophysical survey and excavation took place to the west of the fort in 2017.
Other Roman sites in the area include a marching camp near Aislaby and as part of the project, a team of volunteers supported by Tees Archaeology carried out trial excavations in August and September 2015.
The Anglo-Saxons are not easy to find, however Viking period (10th and 11th century AD) sculptures can be seen in many of the churches and in the churchyard at Low Dinsdale.
After the Norman Conquest, medieval bridges were constructed at Croft, Yarm and Piercebridge and the medieval villages and churches of the area were built. Projects are looking at the medieval villages at Egglescliffe, Dalton-on-Tees and Low Worsall. Medieval industry is represented by the huge mounds that remain from making salt at Seaton Carew, Greatham Creek and Coatham Marsh.
The River Tees acted as a military frontier during the English Civil War. Royalist supplies were landed in Newcastle and sent south into Yorkshire in great convoys with military escorts. Attempts were made to stop these convoys at the crossing points of the Tees and fighting happened at Yarm and Piercebridge and further inland at Guisborough.
Yarm Bridge was the site of a skirmish on February 1st 1643. A guide to English Civil War sites in the area is being produced as part of the project.
The late 17th and early 18th century was characterised by wholesale replacement of buildings in brick although stone remained the material of choice in the western part of the area. This rebuilding accompanied an agricultural revolution which enclosed the medieval open fields leading to the patchwork of small fields which used to be typical of the landscape. As part of the project volunteers have recorded the buildings of Egglescliffe.
The demand for coal and the arrival of the railways had a major impact on the area and this is clearly visible in the great viaduct that cuts through Yarm.
Remains of the Iron and Steel industry which led to the creation of Middlesbrough are still visible at places like the coke ovens at South Bank near Middlesbrough.
The Second World War also left its mark on the area with pillboxes guarding our airfields and against invasion.