Sessions 41, 42 and 43 including Roman soldiery, a moonlit walk, and mushrooming with a fun guy

Photo credits Sue Tyler, Phillip Wells, Robert Fairclough, Adrian Stott

Session 41, 19th October 2019 Roman Experience at Time and Tide Museum

It’s not everyone who can carry off the Legionary Look, but here are some who can.

We drilled, marched and tortoised. And we also met Lady Lydia to hear more about her beauty regime and plans for the exhausting day ahead, instructing slaves.

There was also an intriguing exhibition of British tattoo art.

Session 42, 12th November 2019 Full Moon at Burgh Castle Roman Fort

A beaver moon, mostly obscured by clouds and rain which magically lifted as we entered the fort. 17 brave people made our regular walk, including along the slippery broadwalk, taking some wonderful photographs despite – or actually because of – the weather.

Session 43, 15th November 2019 Mushrooming at Burgh Castle Roman Fort

We walked with Marc Ladi, who runs a great facebook group called Norfolk mushroom spotters(uk). Fun guy Marc has been mushroom hunting since he was a boy going out to find porcini with his Italian father, and he is an encouraging spotter. We even picked a mushroom he’d never found before, the wrinkled peach.

Marc dispelled all the myths you can think of, and warned us off the deadliest mushrooms with the maxim that there are….old mushroom spotters, bold mushroom spotters, but no old, bold mushroom spotters. In the end, by close attention to the ground, and being mindful to likely places, it was quite a squeeze to get them all on the display table – not much room.

Marc said: Found a lot more species than I expected after the frosts but including, Wood Blewits (Lepista nuda), field Blewits (Lepista Saeva), wood/jelly ear (Auricularia auricula), sulphur tufts (Hypholoma fasciculare), glistening ink caps (Coprinellus micaceus) honey fungus (Armillaria mellea), Shaggy parasols (Chlorophyllum brunneum), velvet shanks (Flammulina velutipes), fairy ring champignon (Marasmius oreades) my first ever wrinkled peach! (Rhodotus palmatus) and at the time an unidentified grey capped mushroom, now possibly identified following further research as Volvariella gloiocephala (stubble rose gill). NB: not all are edibles, and even some of the edibles were found in a cemetery so unwise to consume! 

Session 40 15th October St Benet’s Abbey

Photo credits Richard Godfrey, Louise Fowden, John Durrant, Robert Fairclough, Sue Tyler, Fran Pearce, Laura Drysdale, Tod Sullivan, Phillip Wells

We met on a bleak day at St Benet’s Abbey, the strange abbey in the marshes near Ludham that once looked something like this

and now like this.

It is owned by our BCA partners Norfolk Archaeological Trust, and is a thousand years old, as the Benedictine monastery was founded by King Cnut in 1019. The land route to the site is through private farmland, but the ruins are more accessible via the River Bure.

St Benet’s is still used for an annual service in August, and it clearly means a lot to many, we saw inscriptions, gifts and a bunch of flowers with a portrait photo laid in the Gatehouse.

The archaeology of the site is apparent in the lumps and bumps in the landscape, and there are some tempting molehills.

St Benet’s Abbey is wonderfully photogenic and people took some great pictures

We ended up with a cuppa at Ludham Bridge.

Session 39 1st October 2019, Lowestoft, Tod’s Trip

Back view theme with Amanda Payne, who is off to Manchester. We’re going to miss her. Photo by Philip Wells

Tod’s Trips took us from Sams Cafe to the Lowestoft Heritage Centre, with a tour of Flint House and the extraordinary Beach Village model. North Lowestoft is a Heritage Action Zone –

Flint House, after a behind-the-scenes tour with John Stannard, Lowestoft Civic Society. John has been driving initiatives to conserve Lowestoft’s built heritage and the Society owns this magnificent building. Photo by Robert Fairclough.

We feel a building conservation project coming on….

Goodbye Waveney Valley Sculpture Trail

Tuesday 10th September 2019

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Photo by Philip Wells

After a fascinating day interviewing film makers, we headed to Raveningham to take down our installation, The World as Nature Intended.

It has survived howling gales, torrential rain, strong sun and 4500 visitors.

The roundels will be repaired and integrated into our Almanac. The willow structure stays in position, to weather through winter and spring, until the Trail comes round again.

Photo by Philip Wells


We are seeking applications from film makers to work with us from November 2019 – May 2020. Burgh Castle Almanac is a fabulous project in a beautiful place with amazing people – so if you are interested we’d love to hear from you. Deadline for applications Monday 2nd September 2019.



BURGH CASTLE ALMANAC is an archaeology, creativity and wellbeing programme based at Burgh Castle Roman Fort and Time and Tide Museum. Once a month a group of local people walk around the Roman Fort making a photographic record of the changing seasons. Sometimes we are joined by archaeologists, artists, musicians and environmentalists to explore the landscape in different ways. A fortnight later we gather at Time and Tide Museum to make art reflecting our experiences. The project began in May 2018 and continues until May 2020.


The Restoration Trust engages people with mental health problems with heritage, art and culture so that their mental health improves. We call it Culture Therapy.

Norfolk Archaeological Trust works with local communities to save Norfolk’s irreplaceable historic sites and to share them with everyone.

Access Community Trust in Lowestoft promotes social inclusion for the community benefit by preventing people from becoming socially excluded, relieving the needs of those who are socially excluded and assisting them to integrate into society.

Burgh Castle Almanac is part of Water, Mills & Marshes, a £4.5 million programme supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund that focusses on the people, communities and heritage of the Broads National Park.


Make a short film (around 15 mins) reflecting on and encapsulating the Burgh Castle Almanac experience, including using the project’s archive of artworks and photography

Attend up to 6 sessions to capture the activities taking place and speak with group members about their experiences

Work in consultation with project members to create the final film.

Artist requirements

Creative excellence

Experience of working collaboratively

A commitment to community engagement

To provide own filming and editing equipment

Valid public liability insurance of at least £5 million

To comply with risk assessment and monitoring procedures for the project

Project framework

The sessions timetable is available on our website, Sessions are generally on Tuesday mornings, from 10.30am – 1.30pm.  A picnic lunch is included. The Film Maker will work directly with the Burgh Castle Almanac project manager, Laura Drysdale, Director of the Restoration Trust.

The film will be shown at Time and Tide Museum as part of the project’s final Almanac, exhibition and celebrations in May 2020, with a view to wider distribution to community venues and online.

This commission will be dependent on a successful application to Arts Council England.


The budget will be based on tenders submitted in this commissioning process.


Please supply a response to this brief outlining:

Proposed solution: your approach and the methods you will use (up to 500 words)

Costs: Your fee to make the film. Any additional costs attached to your proposal for materials or equipment.

Experience: details of up to five other projects relevant to the current one in terms of scope, size and context; and curriculum vitae(s) of relevant staff to be employed in performing this contract.

Referees: details of two referees

Assessment process

All tenders will be assessed by the project management team including:

Laura Drysdale, The Restoration Trust

Caroline Davison, NAT Co-Director

Andrew Farrell, Broads Authority

Ian Brownlie, BCA Creative Facilitator

Burgh Castle Almanac members

Deadline for applications: Monday 2nd September 2019

Interviews: Tuesday 10th September 2019 at Burgh Castle (venue to be confirmed)

Contract award: Friday 13th September 2019

For further information and to submit your response to this brief please contact:

Laura Drysdale, The Restoration Trust

Waveney Valley Sculpture Trail

Come and see our installation in the beautiful rambling Waveney Valley Sculpture Trail. On Tuesday 6th August we will be running a public workshop on making art based on the historic landscape at Burgh Castle Roman Fort – email if you’d like to come along.