As the Vindolanda Trust heads into its 50th year not only are we looking back over the last 50 years of excavation, we are looking to the future. You have an opportunity to be at the fore front of ground breaking research and excavation of the fascinating site, Magna Roman Fort. You can help protect the history of Magna by donating to our appeal today!

A unique Roman fort on Hadrian’s Wall, under the care of the Vindolanda Trust, holds some of the keys to understanding the biggest questions about the people of the Roman frontier. Magna has it all and includes half a milecastle, part of Hadrian’s Wall, the Vallum ditch, a large town, rubbish dumps and pits, cemeteries and the fort itself. It’s the junction point between three Roman roads, the Military Way, the Stanegate and the Maiden Way. The site covers an area larger than Vindolanda and has the same preservation layers of organic remains and it is now under threat from climate change.

Over half the fort and town sits on a marshy peat bog which is now drying out and the organic remains that were once safely locked away in the oxygen free or waterlogged ditches and marsh are threatened with destruction. When this happens deeply buried wooden, leather and textile artefacts will be lost forever. Acting now you can make a difference to the history of Magna, preserving artefacts and knowledge that will otherwise be lost.

Your donations will make a difference as we work towards these goals:

£2,000 You will help pay for the Vindolanda Trust to continue its detailed aerial survey of the site and environmental monitoring for the next two years.

£10,000 You will help pay for a detailed geophysical survey of the fort, vallum and town.

£30,000 You allow the Vindolanda Trust to conduct a small-scale control research excavation, for 4 weeks to test the archaeological conditions in different parts of the site.

£50,000 You will give the Trust a platform for a larger scale 8-week excavation and assessment of the remains which will be used to build the foundation towards a long-term research plan for Magna.

£100,000 You enable the Trust to run a two-year research excavation and look at the environmental and preservation threats to different parts of the site and learn more about the ancient people of Magna. The organic finds from the site will need to be rescued and carefully preserved and conserved in our specialist laboratory.

You can help support our cause by donating to this appeal. When you donate leave a comment and tell us what you are most excited about for this project; protecting the site from climate change or revealing the history of Magna!

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Featured Fundraisers

Because this is such as important cause Andrew Birley CEO of the Trust and Director of Excavations and Gary Calland Vice Chair of the Vindolanda Trustees and long term excavation volunteer, have got together to fundraise for this cause. 

They will be making the journey from Vindolanda to Rome and back in under 2 weeks. This is to replicate the journey that Roman postmen would have taken  to deliver messages across the Empire and to the most northern frontier. The fort at Magna has the potential to house the same amazing writing tablets as found at Vindolanda, that would enhance our understanding of the site hugely. The route therefore has significance as any letters found at Magna might have followed a similar route to Gary and Andrew to arrive at their destination.

They will be travelling on Vespas which on one full tank of fuel can go about 100 miles roughly the same as a Roman postman could have travelled in a day in ancient times. You can find out more about their journey and sponsor them on their fundraising page!

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