in the Royal County of Berkshire

Parish News

Fundraising for 2019 – Uncovering the Boxford Mosaic

We are starting fundraising in earnest now for next year’s excavation of the mosaic. If you have been attending the lectures or came to the Open Day, the odds are you have already put your hand in your pocket! Cotswold Archaeology received a $1000 dollars from an American couple who had heard about the mosaic discovery last year – this is now in the BHP coffers. That made our total £1246.39 in donations. In the last couple of weeks we have received another £3000 from two very generous donors – what a brilliant start! If you know of any corporate body or charity that would be interested in supporting us, please let me know.

Many thanks.



Home Matches 

Chieveley June 3rd  2 pm

Ardington  June 20th 6pm

Peasemore July 15th 2 pm

West Berks Wanderers  August 26th 2 pm

Away Matches

Chaddleworth June 17th 2pm

Chieveley  July 29th 2pm

All support welcome and if you would be interested in helping/playing please advise on:


Current Archaeology Awards

Unfortunately the Boxford Roman project was unsuccessful at the Current Archaeology Awards ceremony held at the Senate House in London on Friday, where it had been nominated for Research Project of the Year. Two members from each of the project partners attended – Joy Appleton and Tina Lyle from Boxford History Project, Lindsey Bedford and Janet Firth from BARG (Berkshire Archaeology Project) and Matt Nichol and Duncan Coe from Cotswold Archaeology. The winner was Blick Mead, a prehistoric site in the Stonehenge landscape, a much bigger project which clearly had a high profile. We did not get to hear how many public votes each project collected. All that said and although we did not win, we are immensely proud of being nominated in the first place! Most of all, we would like to thank everyone who supported and voted for the project.

The Triumph of Bellerophon. The Boxford Mosaic, a unique survival from Roman Britain.

Roman Boxford Mosaic

We have landowner permission to continue excavation of the Boxford mosaic partly excavated in 2017 but because of the crop rotation, this will take place in 2019 probably mid August after the harvest and of course dependent on funding.  In the meantime, we have begun fundraising, so if you can help with contacts, fundraising or with help next year please let me know.
It is incredible to us that this modest Roman villa should have such a rare mosaic within. We were very fortunate that one of the leading UK iconographers, Anthony Beeson gave a scholarly and fascinating talk at Boxford Village Hall on Sunday 4th March March entitled The Triumph of Bellerophon. The Boxford Mosaic, a unique survival from Roman Britain to a full house. 
For those of you who might be interested in the background of our speaker, who after his visit to the site last year conducted an incredibly thorough research looking at mosaics throughout the Roman world.
Anthony Beeson was born in 1948 into a well established Brighton family. Having worked at the Courtauld Institute of Art Library, he moved to Bristol in 1972 to become Fine Art Librarian, and over the following thirty-seven years developed the Bristol Art Library into one of the finest British public collections of art books. He is a noted classical iconographer who has written extensively in academic journals, lectured on Romano-British art and appeared on the television programme Time Team.

Roman Boxford Lecture Series – Heritage Lottery Funded

Following the informative and entertaining talk with which Neil Holbrook kick-started the BHP Roman lecture series in January, Sam Moorhead – coin specialist from the British Museum will be giving a lecture entitled “Roman coins from Boxford, Berkshire and Britannia!”

Date: Wednesday 15th June 2016 at 7.30pm.
Venue: Boxford Village Hall, Lambourn Valley Road, Boxford, Berks. RG20 8DD.
It would be helpful to have an idea of numbers, so please email to confirm you are coming:

Many thanks and look forward to seeing you.




Roman Boxford – Lecture Series

We look forward to seeing you on the Boxford Big Dig 2016 in August and at any or all of the Roman Boxford Lecture Series 2016 – so please put these dates in the new diary that you found in your Christmas stocking! We have been lucky enough to secure some really great speakers for this coming year … … … .. and you won’t want to miss them when you read all about them – please see below! All lectures will be in Boxford Village Hall, Lambourn Valley Road RG20 8DD at 7.30pm.

We anticipate a high demand for places, so if you plan to come please RSVP your name to: to secure a seat. Thank you.

10th February 2016 – Neil Holbrook -“The Villa in Roman Britain: Design, Evolution and Use.”

Neil gained a first class degree in archaeology from Newcastle University in 1984 before starting work in professional archaeology. He went straight from University to direct excavations on Hadrian’s Wall for English Heritage and spent a number of happy years developing a specialism in Roman archaeology whilst working in the North East. He moved on to Exeter Museum where he worked on Roman finds before being appointed Archaeological Manager at Cotswold Archaeology in 1991. In addition to his managerial duties Neil maintains his interest in Roman archaeology and continues to publish widely. He will be known to a wider audience through the popular Time Team TV programme.

He sits on a number of Committees, including the Federation of Archaeological Managers and Employers (formally SCAUM); the Archaeology Committee of the Roman Society and the Publications Committee of the Bristol & Gloucestershire Archaeological Society. He is also a Visiting Research Fellow in the Department of Archaeology at Reading University.

15th June 2016 – Sam Moorhead – Coin specialist at the British Museum – lecture title to be announced.

Sam Moorhead taught Classics and Archaeology for many years before joining the British Museum in 1997 as Staff Lecturer for Archaeology. He was on the team that made the award-winning Virtually the Ice Age website for Creswell Crags, and he produced a CD-Rom with Channel 4, Roman Journeys. Having worked in interpretation for galleries and exhibitions, such as Persia and Michelangelo for three years, he joined the Department of Britain, Europe and Prehistory in July 2006.

He has written about ancient and early mediaeval coins since publishing the Ackland Art Museum collection at the University North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1984). Since the early 1980s, he has published Roman coin finds from Wiltshire. This was to be the basis for his M.Phil thesis for the Insititute of Archaeology, University College London, in 2001. He worked on the excavations at Tel Jezreel (1992-6) where, in addition to working on the coins and the Roman to Umayyad periods, he assisted in the ceramic research which initiated the major reappraisal of Iron Age chronology in the Levant. He also worked with the University of East Anglia at San Vincenzo in the Molise and has published the coins from the villa site (1997).

Presently, he works as a numismatist on the UEA/Butrint Foundation excavations at Butrint in Albania where he is responsible for the ancient coins. Thousands of coins have been found on different parts of the site and he is currrently working on the nummus economy of the fourth to seventh centuries AD.

Sam is the Finds Adviser for Iron Age and Roman coins overseeing the recording and researching of Iron Age and Roman coins on the Portable Antiquities Scheme database:

9th November 2016 – Julian Richards – lecture title to be announced.

Julian is a Wessex based archaeologist and broadcaster with a passion for Stonehenge.

From 1975 to 1980 Julian worked for the Berkshire Archaeological Unit, helping to build the County Sites and Monuments Record, excavating and carrying out a survey of the Berkshire Downs. This was where he had his first encounter with human burials, something that sowed the seeds for his Ancestors TV series nearly 25 years later.

In 1980 he was moved to Salisbury to work for the newly created Wessex Archaeology, spending the next decade running the ‘Stonehenge Environs Project’, a detailed study of Stonehenge and its surrounding landscape. This project contributed in a small way to several programmes about Stonehenge. In 1994 he left to work for English Heritage on their Monuments Protection Programme (the MPP). This took him back to his solitary fieldwork roots, inspecting and preparing reports on the protection of important archaeological sites in Wiltshire, Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

However, shortly after starting work on the MPP he was asked to contribute to another TV programme, this one about how Stonehenge was built. This programme was centred around an ambitious experiment involving a full scale concrete replica of the tallest of the Stonehenge trilithons and led to a new idea for television that eventually became ‘Meet the Ancestors’.The first series of MTA was commissioned in the autumn of 1996 and he worked in broadcasting and writing until 2004 This involved seven series of ‘Meet the Ancestors’ (1998 – 2004), a five part series ‘Blood of the Vikings’ in 2000 and over 60 programmes in the series ‘Mapping the Town’ on Radio 4 (1999-2004). Since 2004 he has continued writing and broadcasting including the 2011 “Meet the Ancestors revisited”

Opening of Boxford Parish Room & Heritage Centre

Boxford's New Paris Room and Heritage Centre

Boxford’s New Parish Room and Heritage Centre


This little building situated to the rear of the churchyard is now well and truly open.

There is an ongoing project to display and catalogue the many Boxford artifacts, photos, maps, books, files……………………kindly donated by many in the village and further afield over several years; as well as Roman finds from the excavation in 2013 and 2015.

For those new to the village, this building replaces the Victorian Parish Room located on Glebe land which collapsed in 2009 in a snow storm and followed the wishes of the parish in the 2008 Parish Plan to turn the building into a Heritage Centre. The building has largely been funded by the Payne-Gallwey Trust in memory of Sir Phillip Payne Gallwey, a previous churchwarden of St. Andrew’s Church and his mother Mrs. Janet Payne Gallwey, an active member of all village organisations. There have however, been significant and generous donations from other members of the community and the support of the Greenham Common Trust, West Berkshire Council and Boxford Parish Council.

It is manned by volunteers fortnightly on a Wednesday afternoon and also by appointment for those involved in local history or family research. It will also be available for schools who have also expressed an interest in using the contents for history projects. There will be no charge for admission to Boxford residents past or present. We look forward to welcoming you.

Boxford History Project team (BHP)

Boxford Public Access Defibrillator

Boxford’s new defibrillator is now functioning in the church porch at St.Andrew’s. In the event of an emergency, the 999 operator will advise the location and code to access the defibrillator. Thirty two people have signed up for Resuscitation Training which will take place at the Village Hall on September 12th and 19th. More money for the defibrillator, installation, maintenance and first aid training has been received and the total now stands at £2845! Well done Boxford!


The sponsored runners, Colin Hays, Nadege Fleming and Andrew Leader who took part in the Gibbet Challenge Run on 28th June

The sponsored runners, Colin Hays, Nadege Fleming and Andrew Leader who took part in the Gibbet Challenge Run on 28th June to fund raise for the new defibrillator



Boxford Open Gardens

The popular biennial event took place on the last weekend in June. Visitors enjoyed 6 gardens open to the public in aid of St.Andrew’s Church. Gardens ranged from the great and glorious to ones to smaller gems and one undergoing extensive renovation and with a newly sown wild flower meadow – but all of the gardens are well loved and owned by enthusiasts – so something for everyone to see and enjoy. Refreshments including sandwiches over lunchtime were served in the riverside gardens of The Mill. The Open Gardens raised £1600 for St.Andrew’s Church and grateful thanks were expressed by churchwarden Andrew Lyle, for the hard work and support given by the community.




Visitors enjoying one of the beautiful gardens open to the public in 2012

Parish Room Museum


The building is now complete. Nearly £5000 has been raised by a generous donation through Greenham Common Trust findmeagrant for the fit out of display and storage cabinets, now safely delivered.

There was an official opening in the autumn of 2015 and all the artefacts and documents have been successfully installed. If anyone has any contacts who could help in displaying or archiving, would they please contact Joy Appleton 01488 608422.

There is a vast amount of local information on Boxford to collate, archive and display which is fascinating to see and we hope that everyone in the parish will make use of this valuable collection. One of the most important recent additions, are the finds from the Roman villa discovered in 2013. This museum will be the only one to hold these finds.

The Heritage Centre is now home to Boxford’s barrel organ as far as we know the only working barrel organ in Berkshire. We also have a fascinating 18th century clock without a face! Volunteers man the Heritage Centre every fortnight on a Wednesday afternoon but if you would like to come some other time please email:

© 2018 Boxford

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