The Vindolanda Trust’s outstanding collection gains national quality accolade
The Vindolanda Charitable Trust near Bardon Mill, Hexham, has been officially awarded Designated status by the Arts Council England for its rare, unique and extraordinary collection of Roman artefacts from the Vindolanda archaeological site.
Roman Vindolanda, situated in the central sector of the Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage Site is regarded as one of the most eminent archaeological sites in Britain. The site which pre-dates the construction of Hadrian’s Wall, was home to at least 9 forts and 400 years of Roman occupation. The ongoing annual excavations of this site have produced one of the greatest and diverse collections of material culture from anywhere within the Roman Empire, giving an insight into the everyday lives and activities of this frontier community. Highlights of the personal hoard of Roman artefacts are displayed within the modern on-site Chesterholm Museum at Vindolanda and at the Trust’s Roman Army Museum at Greenhead. An abundance of artefacts are on display from the everyday items such as well-preserved shoes and tools to extraordinary and exquisite belongings left behind nearly 2000 years ago.
Arts Council England’s Designation Scheme identifies the pre-eminent collections of national importance held in England’s non-national museums, libraries and archives, based on their quality and significance. The Vindolanda Trust’s award proves that it delivers the highest standards, and that the Trust is committed to the continued recognition and promotion of this remarkable collection, for the enjoyment of generations to come.
Barbara Birley, Curator of Collections at the Vindolanda Trust commented: “We are extremely pleased to be awarded Designation status for our collection. It is a significant accolade, reflecting not only on the collection’s quality but also the impact that it has made, and is continuing to make, on modern archaeological research into the everyday life of the Roman people of Vindolanda. This award supports a whole range of committed people who work, volunteer and research the site to help us understand and create fuller picture of our Roman past.”
Darren Henley, Chief Executive of Arts Council England, said: “We are delighted to be awarding this prestigious accolade to the Vindolanda Trust. The Vindolanda collection offers a fascinating and important insight into the history of the nation, and should be celebrated and shared with new audiences.”