Archaeological digs

Professor Dame Rosemary Cramp overseeing the dig

Excavations of St. Paul’s and St. Peter’s monastery by Professor Dame Rosemary Cramp of Durham University took place between 1963 and 1978. The work has been written up by Professor Cramp in her two volume study of Wearmouth-Jarrow (cited below).

The artefacts recovered from the earliest monastic buildings date from the late 7th. and early 8th. century and include large quantities of some of the earliest coloured window-glass from this country, fine imported pottery, green porphyry and beautiful stone carvings. As well as these finds there were artefacts that would have been used in the daily lives of the monks.

In the St. Peter’s churchyard the walls of the Saxon monastic buildings were depicted in glass and stone to the south of the church from plans in Professor Cramp’s published investigations. These were changed in 2015 from new funding obtained by Sunderland City Council to show more clearly the layout of the excavated monastery.

Cf. Wearmouth and Jarrow Monastic Sites Vols 1 and 2 (English Heritage) ISBN 10 1873592930 and 1873592949.