Capturing the Past, led by CAVLP Heritage

Nov 23, 2015

Press Release

Share Your Stories and Bring Back Memories

Try your hand at archaeology or bring an object related to local history to RSPB Baron’s Haugh and Dalzell Estate on Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 November for the launch of a new local archaeological project, Capturing the Past.

Led by CAVLP Heritage, Capturing the Past will build a picture of how people worked and lived in the Clyde and Avon valleys with local residents and provide opportunities for learning new heritage focussed skills.

On Saturday 28, you and your family can book to participate in the first survey of the project at RSPB Baron’s Haugh and Dalzell Estate. Learn how to conduct specialist archaeological surveys and record important archaeological sites, guided by CAVLP Heritage archaeologists.

On Sunday 29, you are invited to bring along objects and heirlooms to the site, which are associated to the industrial, agricultural and horticultural heritage of the Clyde and Avon valleys.  CAVLP Heritage archaeologists will help discover the stories behind them, and to digitally record them and the memories that are connected to them.  Photos, tools, family heirlooms and historical documents are all examples of objects that the team hope the public will bring along to the event.

Capturing the Past is funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund supported Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership and Historic Scotland and runs until summer 2016. CAVLP Heritage are appealing for volunteers to get involved and share the historical knowledge they have already – even a small amount of time can help uncover the story of the valleys over a few thousand years.

Free archaeological training will be available through the project including undertaking research, discovering and recording sites and learning how to publicise discoveries.

“Through the Capturing the Past project, we’re asking people to actively take a part in helping to discover and record the important archaeology of the Clyde and Avon valleys”, explains CAVLP Heritage officer Dr Paul Murtagh.

He continues, “We want as many people as possible, from all over the area, to learn how to conduct archaeological work and help us build a picture of how people worked and lived in the valleys over the past few thousand years. By taking part in our training workshops members of the public will be able to learn, first-hand, how archaeologists understand the landscape and how to conduct archaeological work themselves.”

Dr Murtagh gives his grandfather’s measuring tape as an example of the type of objects he hopes the public will bring along.  Adding, “my grandfather was a blacksmith and used this brass and steel measuring tape every day. I like that it’s bashed in and well used. He was responsible for loads of the decorative metal work that is still found around Dumbarton. I remember him telling me that he made and put up the flag pole on top of Dumbarton Castle. I can imagine him using this measuring tape to help make the flag pole, before he humphed it up the twirling passages of the Rock.”

The Capturing the Past project will document details of objects brought by the public to RSPB Baron’s Haugh and make 3D models of a number of them. People’s memories and stories associated with the objects will also be captured, meaning that the project team will build a picture of how people lived and worked in the valleys in the past.

The following free weekend event will officially launch the project. Further events and training weekends will take place throughout January, February and March.

Saturday 28 November
RSPB Baron’s Haugh, 10.30am – 3.30pm, adults, children and families all welcome. Free but booking essential: 01555 661555 or email Paul and Karen at

Sunday 29 November
RSPB Baron’s Haugh, 11am- 4pm, all welcome, free drop in sessions all day

About Capturing the Past

  • Capturing the Past seeks to engage with the industrial, agricultural and horticultural heritage of the Clyde and Avon Valleys
  • There are two key elements to the project: Recording people’s memories of working and living in the landscape, and carrying out archaeological surveys
  • The surveys will be carried out by groups of volunteers trained as part of the project
  • Training sessions will be run throughout spring and summer 2016 and are free and open to all
  • For further information contact Dr Paul Murtagh or call 01555 661555


About CAVLP Heritage

  • CAVLP Heritage is delivered by Northlight Heritage as a partner of Heritage Lottery Fund supported Clyde and Avon Valley Landsacape Partnership, and supported by Historic Scotland and Renewable Energy Fund managed by South Lanarkshire Council. It will deliver 7 key projects over the next 3 years
  • The 7 projects are: Mapping the Past, Capturing the Past, Local Landscape Heroes, Flow of Time, Investigating the Past, Education Materials and the CAVLP Exhibition

Mapping the Past
Capturing Our Past
Local Landscape Heroes
Flow of Time
Castle Qua (Investigating the Past)
CAVLP Exhibition
Education Materials for Schools

About Northlight Heritage

  • Northlight Heritage are part of York Archaeological Trust for Excavation and Research Limited
  • Our aim is to help people appreciate and engage with their pasts and our practice is rooted in a belief that heritage can change lives for the better
  • For further information about Northlight Heritage, please visit, follow us on Twitter @northlighter or like us on Facebook NorthlightHeritage

About Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership (CAVLP)

  • The Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership is a Heritage Lottery Fund supported project
  • The aims of the organisation are to conserve, enhance and celebrate the unique landscape and cultural heritage of the Clyde and Avon valleys
  • The Partnership consists of ten key partners: South Lanarkshire Council, North Lanarkshire Council, Central Scotland Green Network Trust, Clydesdale Community Initiatives, New Lanark Trust, Northlight Heritage, RSPB Scotland Baron’s Haugh, Scottish Natural Heritage, Scottish Wildlife Trust, and The Rural Development Trust

Sarah O’Sullivan, Communications Support Officer
Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership
David Dale’s House, Rosedale Street, New Lanark ML11 9DJ
Tel: 01555 663430 / 07432 465 903

Follow us on Twitter: @ClydeAvonValley
Like us on Facebook: Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership

Clyde and Avon Valley Landscape Partnership Lanarkshire
Our People, Our Land, Our history: Shaping our Future