Ashurbanipal and the Assyrians at the British Museum, London

I'm lucky enough to be a regular visitor to the British Museum, and on a recent trip was excited to be able to see the latest exhibition, 'I am Ashurbanipal: king of the world, king of Assryia', which explores the life and world of Assyria's last great king who reigned in the seventh century BC, … Continue reading Ashurbanipal and the Assyrians at the British Museum, London

Winter dreaming: the Greco-Roman theatre at Taormina, Sicily

On days that I work from home I'll always start with a walk. Nothing special at all, just a way to get some fresh air and a little exercise before turning on the laptop. Today, leaving the house I looked at the sky and was confronted with a quintessential January day in southern England: it … Continue reading Winter dreaming: the Greco-Roman theatre at Taormina, Sicily

People, pigs and picnics: Nympsfield Long Barrow, Gloucestershire

High above the Severn Valley at the top of Frocester Hill, where you can look west across to the Severn estuary and the hills of the Forest of Dean, is a small-ish structure made of stone, soil piled up around it. The stones form an entrance behind which are three chambers. This is Nympsfield long … Continue reading People, pigs and picnics: Nympsfield Long Barrow, Gloucestershire

Venta Silurum: a Roman town at Caerwent, Monmouthshire

It would be easy to miss Caerwent, a small village in South Wales. You might glance up as you drive by the Northgate House Bed and Breakfast, see the vestiges of a stone arch in the garden and think nothing of it. Off you’d go, none the wiser. But that would be a shame because … Continue reading Venta Silurum: a Roman town at Caerwent, Monmouthshire

Two castles and a church: a wander around historic Dartmouth and Kingswear, Devon

The bus dropped me in Kingswear up above the marina and the station for the steam railway. Lying on the eastern side of the River Dart in Devon it’s opposite the town of Dartmouth, my destination for the day, a popular spot for tourists in the summer and also a medieval port set back about … Continue reading Two castles and a church: a wander around historic Dartmouth and Kingswear, Devon

Visiting the Anglo-Saxons at Deerhurst, Gloucestershire

It’s not every day that you get to walk into a building well over a thousand years old. I was visiting St Mary’s Church in Deerhurst, a few miles north of Gloucester, whose history goes back into the 8th century. Set in a leafy churchyard and next to the old priory, the core of the … Continue reading Visiting the Anglo-Saxons at Deerhurst, Gloucestershire

Gloucester’s Roman City wall and King’s Bastion

About 5m below the rather innocuous 1960s King’s Walk shopping centre in Gloucester lies a section of the Roman City Wall. Only open to the public every now and then, I jumped at the chance to visit this summer. The entrance is right in the middle of the shopping centre, underneath a large metal cover. … Continue reading Gloucester’s Roman City wall and King’s Bastion