The Third Annual Pitt Rivers Lecture by Bournemouth University, in association with the Prehistoric Society.


2019 Annual Pitt Rivers Lecture

29th October 2019

Fire: Friend of Piend in Hunam History?

to be given by Professor Ruth Tringham, University of Californian, Berkley, USA

Free public lecture - For further  details click here







Meeting News

Around the harbour

 Poole Harbour Heritage Project

Next meeting Thursday 28th November  2019 - 6 pm 

at Poole Harbour Commissioner's Office


Poole Maritime Trust - details click here

The Office of the Trust, meet at the rooms above Canford Cliffs Public Library, 

every Thursday morning 10 - 12am - (closed during August).

A comprehensive library is held of books related to maritime matters of Poole Harbour. 



Visit to Wytch Farm excavation 26th June 2018


Bournemouth University's training excavation at Wytch Farm - photo album.

Poole Shipping Records and Port Books

A Project is planned to transfer the records from photo copies of Poole Shipping Records and Port Books on to an Excel Office worksheet, and database.

Copies have been extracted from the harbour ledgers covering part of  19th - 20th century  held by Poole Maritime Trust and some extracts have been taken from the earlier Port Books held in the National Archive.  A trial session will be arranged later in the year. If interested in helping with transcription please  'contact us' .

Green Island and the  Causeway (Iron Age Quays)

Winter has meant calling a halt the Seabed Survey but with further extreme low tides predicted shortly it is hoped further surveys will start.  

Borehole and Peat sampling 

A continuing Project to build up a profile of the early development of the harbour. 



General Interest - also see web links

  1. View transcripts from -.  Browse diaries  ‘benjamin & Isaac Lester diaries’ .  click here


Future research - (June 2017)

The possibility of a survey of the peninsulas around the southern shores of the Harbour was raised. There is a high potential for further industrial sites to be identified (pottery manufacture and salt extraction), as well as probable settlement evidence. It was suggested that this might be best achieved by supporting a PhD student to carry out the analysis. This would involve PHHP providing half of the costs of a studentship, with match-funding provided by Bournemouth University. The work would initially focus on survey, using a range of methods, followed by sample sub-surface investigations. This would provide new insights into the use of this landscape.


  • The new Chairman of PMT, Richard Lacey, is keen to focus on research.

  • Seminar Saturday 25th February 2017
    'Trade and Communications within Poole Harbour and beyond'.
    The Seminar was very sucessful and we would appreciate any feedback and subjects for future study.
    Lake Gates - Talk by Paul Cheetham on the latest research at Lake Gates suggests that the Roman Road from Hamworthy to Lake post dates the fort at Lake  and during the invasion period (c43AD) supplies are most likely to have been shipped  via the River Stour from Christchurch harbour-   see Upton Country Park below. 

 Current Projects

  • Seabed surveyTests on sea bed scanning equiment completed over the summer.  Trial test programme proved very encouraging and demo on laptop. Purchase of survey equipment recommended. 
  • Upton Country Park - Survey results on a site are of archaeological interest. It is hoped that further investigations scheduled to take place in the following weeks will give some firmer dating and interpretarion of the site. Being adjacent to the alignment of the Roman road running from the harbour to Lake Gates outside Wimborne this could add to our understanding if dating from that period. Survey of farm field by Dorset Castles Research Group (DCRG). Test pits results Report pending 2017.
    Update - Indications from the test pits suggest medieval dating. The Roman Industrial workings (Boat House Clump DHNAS proceedings Vol 107) are north of the area surveyed.  see Seminar - Lake Gates
    Sea level changes - An article of interest in recent publication.

 Past Project.

  •        Alum & Copperas - publication Dorset Proceedings.
  • Pottery - project brick research.  Grace Jones
  • Green Island - Cleavel and the 'Causeway'.
  • Studland Circles - Seminar debate.
  • Poole Bricks - database set up.
  • The Harbour shoreline walk-over survey by KJ† and AH. - Photo record. and the survey notes and route could be used as guidelines for walks.Written report to be done.
  • Sandford Project -

† Sadly Keith Jarvis died suddenly 5th June 2015.