Skip to content

Digging into the region’s past

1 Share
By Fiona Reid
Digging into the region's past

A NEW three-year archaeological project looking at the region’s past has been launched.

The South West Scotland Archaeological Research Framework (SWSARF) will review what archaeologists know about South West Scotland’s ‘complex past’ and explore questions still to be answered.

It will take in Dumfries and Galloway and Ayrshire, which experts say boasts a vast array of significant archaeological sites, including the world-famous medieval abbey at Whithorn.

People living locally, along with heritage and community groups and professionals, will be encouraged to participate and give their views on archaeology in the region.

And a series of free public events, such as symposiums and workshops, are planned over the next three years to gather input.

The final product will be a new website with sections covering each archaeological period, from the Late Upper Palaeolithic (which began around 12,000 BC) to the 20th century and with case studies offering a more detailed look at significant sites and projects.

It will contain a wealth of reliable and up-to-date information for anyone interested in the heritage of South West Scotland, and will be a ‘crucial tool’ for archaeologists and their investigations locally.

The project will be undertaken by Ayrshire-based Rathmell Archaeology working in partnership with the West of Scotland Archaeology Service and Dumfries and Galloway Council. Scotland’s Archaeological Research Framework (ScARF), based at the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland and primarily funded by Historic Environment Scotland, will co-ordinate the project as part of Scotland’s Archaeology Strategy.

Hugh McBrien, West of Scotland Archaeology Service, said: ”Thousands of archaeological interventions of all sizes have taken place across the South West of Scotland, bringing to light a huge mass of new information.

“This project will look at what we have learned, and find out what we still don’t know, so we can help steer new research in the most useful directions to add detail to the already rich story of this region.”

For more information, visit



20th Jul

Mothballing group set up

By Marc Mclean, Local Democracy Reporter | DNG24