Butser Ancient Farm

Butser Ancient Farm Experimental Archaeology and Educational site
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Welcome to Butser Ancient Farm! We’re a unique experimental archaeological site and a fascinating day out, nestled into the rolling South Downs National Park. The farm displays ongoing constructions of ancient buildings based on real sites, dating from the Stone Age through the Iron Age and Roman Britain, and finishing with the Anglo-Saxons. We also grow crops from prehistory and keep rare breeds of animals, including pigs, goats and sheep. We have a full programme of special events including fantastic Celtic festivals and workshops, such as metallurgy, Iron Age cooking, bushcraft skills or felting. It’s a truly memorable family day out on the Hampshire/West Sussex border.

The treewright's apprentice. Come and learn traditional woodworking skills with treewright Darren Hammerton this summer....
06/06/2019

The treewright's apprentice. Come and learn traditional woodworking skills with treewright Darren Hammerton this summer. Darren is building a second Saxon house at Butser Ancient Farm and you can learn the skills you would need to build your own timber-framed building.http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/treewrighting-workshops/

06/06/2019

Calling all teachers!

We are part of an exciting event on the 19th June in Portsmouth showcasing the best school trip destinations in the local area - School Trips - Celebrating Education Beyond the Classroom

We're delighted to share that all teachers who pre-register online following the link below will receive a FREE Sussex Top attractions trade pass at the event - this gives 2 people free entry to a choice of over 50 top attractions along the South Coast.

This has been sponsored by Sussex Top Attractions as a thank you to all the hard working teachers out there who deserve a nice day out in the summer holidays!

Please spread the word and we hope to see you there! 😊

Viking helm workshop. Make something amazing. Four day workshop over two weekends. Blacksmith and armourer Wez Smith wil...
03/06/2019

Viking helm workshop. Make something amazing. Four day workshop over two weekends. Blacksmith and armourer Wez Smith will guide you through the process of cold forging and riveting your own Viking spectacled helmet.

http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/metalwork-workshops/

As we step into the month of June, approaching the summer solstice, we're looking forward to lots of lovely long summer ...
01/06/2019

As we step into the month of June, approaching the summer solstice, we're looking forward to lots of lovely long summer evenings stretching out ahead of us...🌞

If you would like to join us for something special to mark the midpoint of the year, there are now just three weeks until our Midsummer Celtic Harp Concert with the very talented Harriet Earis.

Tickets are available via our website: http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/midsummer-celtic-harp-concert-harriet-earis/

We've been having a wonderful half term week celebrating the completion of our villa renovations and mosaic floor... Her...
31/05/2019

We've been having a wonderful half term week celebrating the completion of our villa renovations and mosaic floor... Here are a few more photos of the villa and our celebrations! ☺️

Thank you to everyone who has joined us and to everyone who has put in so much time and hard work to make the villa a home fit for a Roman!

30/05/2019

Our mosaic is now complete... the crowning glory to our villa renovations!

The mosaic is a copy of the design from the original Roman villa at Sparsholt near Winchester. It has taken thousands of tesserae and over a thousand hours of combined labour to create... we are absolutely thrilled with the results!

Here's a timelapse started last summer showing the process!

Thank you to the Romans from Butser IX Legion and everyone who joined us over the bank holiday weekend! The legion will ...
28/05/2019

Thank you to the Romans from Butser IX Legion and everyone who joined us over the bank holiday weekend!

The legion will be back with us on the 15th and 16th June, starring in our Father's Day Weapons and Warriors event on the Sunday ⚔️

Find out how the Roman army lived and fought in Britain, and if you’d cope with wearing the armour, taking your orders in Latin and eating Roman food!

The Romans from Butser IX Legion will be in residence at the farm today and tomorrow, come and see our newly renovated R...
26/05/2019

The Romans from Butser IX Legion will be in residence at the farm today and tomorrow, come and see our newly renovated Roman villa and find out about what life would have been like in a Romano-British countryside home!

The first roof truss for our new Saxon building was put together earlier this week and is looking wonderful! Here's tree...
25/05/2019

The first roof truss for our new Saxon building was put together earlier this week and is looking wonderful! Here's tree-wright Darren working on the construction.

This is the first roof truss of ten that will be made and put up over the coming weeks...

Note the beautiful yellow woad that has been thriving on the disturbed ground where the wall framework waits for the roof!

We are now on the final stretch of our villa mosaic project and we're busily finishing the floor ready for our half term...
20/05/2019

We are now on the final stretch of our villa mosaic project and we're busily finishing the floor ready for our half term Roman villa-warming celebrations next week!

As well as being a really nice, authentic floor covering for our villa, the mosaic has been a fascinating piece of experimental archaeology, providing us with some interesting insights into the process of mosaic making, using quite authentic techniques.

In keeping with that authentic experimental approach, we have also included the initials of each one of our mosaicists in the border of the design... we can’t say for certain that any Roman-British mosaicist did this, but there are lots of ‘mistakes’ in mosaics around the country, which look rather obvious, even deliberate. Some people think that these are sort of ‘coded’ messages by the makers to say ‘I did this’.

In keeping with this secretive approach, we have hidden the initials in plain sight – with subtle shifts of pattern which are not easy to spot.

Once we have opened the mosaic fully for public view next week you might enjoy a game of spot the mosaicist!

Join Mark Havey from the Butser Education team and  discover how our ancient ancestors gathered materials and made use o...
19/05/2019

Join Mark Havey from the Butser Education team and discover how our ancient ancestors gathered materials and made use of them. You will learn basic flint knapping, fire lighting techniques, make basic cordage and use an ancient-recipe glue to make your own Stone Age spear, all in the wonderful setting of Butser Ancient Farm's archaeologically reconstructed buildings.This workshop is suitable for anyone interested in prehistory and history, ancient technology or bushcraft... and it will be great fun, too!

The workshop is on Saturday 8 June and the cost is £65.00

To book follow this link:https://www.ticketsource.co.uk/booking/select/EPGFqroiOfZl

Join us this weekend to meet the Saxons from local re-enactment group Herigeas Hundas. Here are some more great photos f...
18/05/2019

Join us this weekend to meet the Saxons from local re-enactment group Herigeas Hundas.

Here are some more great photos from their stay in our Saxon house over Easter, taken by talented photographer Ross Underwood.

Plus today there'll be Celts in the Iron Age enclosure bringing our Roundhouses to life 🔥

This week we welcomed four new baby pigs to the farm - a rare breed called  Gloucestershire Old Spots - and they look li...
17/05/2019

This week we welcomed four new baby pigs to the farm - a rare breed called Gloucestershire Old Spots - and they look like they are enjoying their new surroundings!

Felt a Funky Fox. Create a super, needle-felted fox, created over a wire armature. Sunday 9 June, £90.http://www.butser...
15/05/2019
Fabric, plants, weaving and healing - Butser Ancient Farm

Felt a Funky Fox. Create a super, needle-felted fox, created over a wire armature. Sunday 9 June, £90.
http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/2018-kingdom-of-plants/

Learn Something Old Plants for food, for fabric, healing and weaving. Nettle, flax, weaving, medicine, herbs. As spring blossoms into summer, this foraging workshop will introduce you to the wild abundance of this special season, as well as the beautiful … Continue reading →

We're looking forward to the Saxons from Herigeas Hundas joining us again this weekend, bringing our Saxon House to life...
14/05/2019

We're looking forward to the Saxons from Herigeas Hundas joining us again this weekend, bringing our Saxon House to life with crafts, demonstrations, fighting displays (at 11am and 2pm each day) and more!

To give you a taste of what to expect, here are some brilliant photos taken during their visit over the Easter weekend.

Thanks to photographers Chris Raymont and James Fox for the brilliant pictures.

We have two fabulous cooking workshops coming up in June! Food interpreter Caroline Nicolay will be running an Iron Age ...
13/05/2019

We have two fabulous cooking workshops coming up in June! Food interpreter Caroline Nicolay will be running an Iron Age cookery workshop on Saturday June 1st, followed by a , Saxon cookery workshop on Sunday June 2nd . They are £60 each and you have the option to stay overnight in one of our wonderful roundhouses for an additional £35.

If you would love to know more about ancient food and cooking techniques, why no join Caroline, food interpreter at Pario Gallico, on one or both workshops discover what kind of food, utensils and cooking techniques. An overnight stay will make it even more of an experience!
To book, follow this link: http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/ancient-cookery-workshops/

Get started in metal work with Wez Cole. Copper repousse is a way of working copper without heat to create designs and p...
12/05/2019
Metal work workshops 2019 - Butser Ancient Farm

Get started in metal work with Wez Cole. Copper repousse is a way of working copper without heat to create designs and patterns.All tools and materials provided. Sunday 19 May, £90.
http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/metalwork-workshops/

Learn Something Old Metal work in Copper, Bronze, Silver and Iron. Butser Ancient Farm offers a range of metal working workshops for 2019. From the crafting of delicate jewellery, working with softer metals, to the heat and fire of bronze … Continue reading →

This time last week our Wickerman was aflame! We've added some more photos of the festival to our website over on our Be...
11/05/2019

This time last week our Wickerman was aflame!
We've added some more photos of the festival to our website over on our Beltain page and here are some more from the burn by volunteer Eleanor Sopwith.

It's hard to believe this time last week we were busily getting ready to open our gates for our annual Beltain festival!...
11/05/2019

It's hard to believe this time last week we were busily getting ready to open our gates for our annual Beltain festival!

We've just about recovered and wanted to say a huge thank you to everyone involved in putting on such an event... without the hundreds of wonderful volunteers who dedicate their time to making it a success, Beltain simply couldn't happen!

Here are some pictures of just a few of the wonderful team of helpers who made Beltain possible.... thank you!

(thanks to Karen Sanders for capturing these lovely pictures as we were preparing to open the gates!)

The old story...join local writer and storyteller Dawn Nelson to discover the world of faerytale, folk and fable, and cr...
10/05/2019
Voice of the Past. Stories, Music and Language workshops - Butser Ancient Farm

The old story...join local writer and storyteller Dawn Nelson to discover the world of faerytale, folk and fable, and create your own faery tale to tell. Saturday 18 May £35.
http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/voicesofthepast/

Stories, music, language. Come and hear the voice of the past. Traditional stories, ancient language and the sacred sounds of the past. Engraving by Gustave Dore Saturday 18 May Faerytale, folk and fable, £35. Join local writer and storyteller, Dawn … Continue reading →

This weekend we're very excited to be hosting a touring production of Lilies on the Land by local theatre group Lion and...
08/05/2019

This weekend we're very excited to be hosting a touring production of Lilies on the Land by local theatre group Lion and Unicorn.

The play charts the personal journeys of four women who join the Women's Land Army in WW2. Based on 150 letters and interviews with real Land Girls, the play follows these four very different women as they face backbreaking work on farms as part of the War Effort. It is funny, poignant and fascinating, and contains music from the time.

The play will be at Butser this Friday and Saturday night in the atmospheric setting of our Little Woodbury Roundhouse 😊
The run has so far received great reviews and tickets for the last few shows are available from their website here; www.lionandunicornplayers.co.uk

As promised here are some more photographs from our Beltain festivities on Saturday! The farm is slowly returning to nor...
07/05/2019

As promised here are some more photographs from our Beltain festivities on Saturday!

The farm is slowly returning to normal and we're processing all the lovely photos and comments about Beltain 😃🔥

We're thrilled so many of you had a fantastic time whilst supporting the work of the farm. All the profits from the festival will go directly back into our educational and research work, supporting our plans for buildings and archaeological experiments in the year ahead and we've got lots of exciting things planned ☺️

Thank you to the talented Eleanor Sopwith for these fantastic pictures.

Wow what a festival! Thank you to everyone who joined us yesterday for Beltain, braving the chilly weather to celebrate ...
05/05/2019

Wow what a festival! Thank you to everyone who joined us yesterday for Beltain, braving the chilly weather to celebrate the start of summer... with a rather triumphant finish to the burning wickerman!! More photos to follow soon :)

It's the day of our Beltain festival and we can't wait for ticket holders to join us on site... the Wickerman is ready a...
04/05/2019

It's the day of our Beltain festival and we can't wait for ticket holders to join us on site... the Wickerman is ready and waiting!

Just a reminder that the site is cash only and we'd recommend bringing warm clothes and layers/ blankets as it can get chilly especially in the evening 🔥

please if possible car share and don't bring you dogs as they won't be allowed on to site and we'd hate them to be locked in cars.

One day till Beltain!**We are  SOLD OUT** There will NOT be any tickets available on the gate.Thank you to everyone who ...
03/05/2019

One day till Beltain!

**We are SOLD OUT** There will NOT be any tickets available on the gate.

Thank you to everyone who has bought tickets and supported the farm, as our biggest fundraising event of the year your support makes a real difference and we can't wait to welcome you tomorrow afternoon to see what we have been up to over the past months!

Please note we are closed to the public today for set up for the festival. We will re-open as normal on Bank Holiday Monday 6th May. 😊

2 days till Beltain! **the festival is now SOLD OUT** For those joining us It's set to be dry and bright but a little ch...
02/05/2019

2 days till Beltain! **the festival is now SOLD OUT**

For those joining us It's set to be dry and bright but a little chilly so do make sure you bring layers. Picnic blankets and torches (for the journey back to the car) are a good idea too and remember it's a cash only site and no alcohol can be brought into the festival (don't worry we'll have lots of mead and a wide variety of drinks at the bar!!).

Beyond the practicalities, dressing to impress is positively encouraged and to help you along the way we'll have lots of volunteer face-painters to turn you into Celtic warriors and magical creatures!

Our friends at the Sustainability Centre will also be joining us and making beautiful natural headdresses, or if that's not quite your style you could even try on some Roman armour courtesy of the Butser IX Legion!

Have you got your Beltain outfit sorted?

The farm will be closed tomorrow as we prepare for Beltain - we will reopen for Beltain ticket holders on Saturday at 4.30pm!

3 days till Beltain! **we are now SOLD OUT** there are no more tickets available to purchase in advance or on the gate.T...
01/05/2019

3 days till Beltain! **we are now SOLD OUT** there are no more tickets available to purchase in advance or on the gate.

Thank you to everyone who has purchased tickets and supported the farm, as our biggest fundraising event of the year your support makes a real difference and we can't wait to show you what we have been up to over the past months!

For those joining us on Saturday there'll be plenty to keep you celebrating throughout the evening with our tasty food stalls and providers. This year you'll be able to take your pick from a range of food including a BBQ, Hog roast, Vegan Dhal, crepes and the Butser cake stall!

Plus sample some ancient dishes courtesy of our wonderful reenactors!

Happy May Day or Beltain from us all at Butser Ancient Farm!Nature is bursting into life all around us, these are the bl...
01/05/2019

Happy May Day or Beltain from us all at Butser Ancient Farm!

Nature is bursting into life all around us, these are the blossoms from our apple trees, planted last year to create a small orchard between our Roman and Saxon houses. 🌸

⁣With our Beltain Festival just three days away, an ancient celebration of the fertility of nature and the arrival of summer, this beautiful new growth is wonderful to see. ⁣

⁣There are only a very limited number of tickets for our Beltain celebration left and we expect to sell out very soon. If you’re hoping to join us do book now! ⁣☺️🔥

http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/beltain-festival/

4 days till Beltain!Jonathon Huet from Walkwithtrees will be joining us once again to tell wonderful stories around the ...
30/04/2019

4 days till Beltain!

Jonathon Huet from Walkwithtrees will be joining us once again to tell wonderful stories around the fire in our Little Woodbury Roundhouse. Be transported back in time and to other worlds with Jonathon's enchanting tales...

...If you want to get a glimpse of potential other worlds, stop by HantsAstro who will have their many telescopes set up pointing to the sky and stars above!✨

http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/beltain-festival/

5 days till Beltain! Delighting visitors with a fantastic array of ancient and traditional crafts, demonstrations and di...
29/04/2019

5 days till Beltain!
Delighting visitors with a fantastic array of ancient and traditional crafts, demonstrations and displays will be many local artisans, experimental archaeologists, heritage attractions and craftspeople including Ancient Craft - James Dilley and the Ancient Wessex Network CIC
Come and learn about and try your hand at a huge range of ancient skills this Saturday.

http://www.butserancientfarm.co.uk/beltain-festival/

Address

Chalton Lane
Petersfield
PO8 0BG

Opening Hours

Monday 10:00 - 17:00
Tuesday 10:00 - 17:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 17:00
Thursday 10:00 - 17:00
Saturday 16:30 - 22:00

Telephone

02392598838

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