The Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland was founded in 1861 and has, since that time, pursued an active programme of lectures, field trips and publication. Based in Durham, but with interests throughout the region, it aims to provide an opportunity for all those interested in archaeology and architectural history to find out more, visit places of interest and experience hands on activities.
There are monthly meetings from September to June, with public lectures covering areas of local, regional and international interest. Most lectures take place in Durham, but the AGM in May is generally held elsewhere in the region and is combined with a trip to a site of particular interest to the Society. In December there is a Members Meeting, where individuals can talk about their own research interests and bring artefacts for identification and discussion. Excursions are organised in the summer.
The Society has an active fieldwork programme throughout the year, and it is a partner in the Binchester project, with members participating in the community excavation programme there. Successful joint meetings with the North East Vernacular Architecture Group and CBA North have enabled experienced archaeologists and architectural historians to share their knowledge and skills with others, and beginners are always welcome.
Members of the Society receive the society newsletter twice a year and volumes of the Durham Archaeological Journal on publication, and they are given the opportunity to purchase back issues of the Journal (where available) and the Society’s occasional research reports at very reasonable prices.
The management of the society is undertaken by the Committee, which comprises the officers of the society, the retiring president, six ordinary members elected in rotation for a term of three years, and such additional members as the Committee may wish to co-opt. Above all, the Society aims to promote an appreciation of the wealth of the archaeological and architectural heritage of our region amongst those who live in the north east and beyond, and to bring together all those with similar interests in a range of informative, enjoyable and thoroughly memorable activities.