Our developing plan of activities

Our developing plan of activities

Seventy people attended a meeting in the Mead Hall (Meon Hall) in Meonstoke on Valentine’s Day, February 14th 2013. Members of the committee of the Friends of Corhampton Saxon Church were joined by representatives of the ten villages through which the River Meon flows (from East Meone on the South Downs to Ticcefele (Titchfield) where the river flows into the Soluent

We were joined by archaeologists, historians and representatives of heritage organisations who have agreed to partner with us in the programmer (see partner organisations for the list)

We were also joined by Linda Coumbe and Ross Irving the head teachers of Menestoche and Drocensford schools, and four of their Saxon warrior pupils.

Launch of the Saxon programme February 14th 2014

Launch of the Saxon programme February 14th 2014

Guy Liardet welcomed the assembled Meon Wara (people of the Meon) and Peter O’Sullivan briefed us on the opportunity presented by the HLF funding

One or two people from each village volunteered to act as points of contact for their village. The list is published at village points of contact

The following is the developing programme that emerged from the meeting

If you want more information or wish to help develop, support or participate in an activity please register your interest via this website www.saxonsinthemeonvalley.org.uk/registering-interest (if you have not already done so) and contact your village point of contact or activity lead or send an email to info@saxonsinthemeonvalley.org.uk.

‘Flagship’ activities; for which we already have leaders (in most cases), confirmed interest & direction
Activity   Meon Valley Community Leads
School Saxon DayMay 9th 2013
  • Peter O’Sullivan
  • Other volunteers wishing to have fun are welcome
  • Other schools interested?
Non-invasive archaeological (& related) surveys  
  • Guy Liardet plus a lead (appointed by our village representatives) for those villages wishing to have surveys undertaken.
  • Agreement form landowners
Meon Valley Saxon Festival (Summer 2014)  
  • Planning team needed
  • Including representatives from each village (hopefully all) that wish to take part
Battle of Hasting Re-enactment October 2014 (not happening in 2013)   
  • Planning person(s) needed
National Saxon Heritage exhibitions visit Winchester in 2016   
  • Peter O’Sullivan & Chris Parry
  • Other offers of help/involvement welcome
Series of expert historical & archaeological talks  
  • Frances Keppel to lead taking input from others in the community
  • An idea is that each village will host such a talk
Embroidery – creating embroidery panels, capturing the Saxon story, to hang in each village Church   
  • Rosie Frere-Cook, Anne Morrice, Lyn Judge
  • Each village wishing to take part offering an ‘embroidery lead’
Visits to other Saxon Heritage Sites,Winchester, Sutton Hoo, British Museum & Library Bayeux Tapestry   
  • Chris Maxse has offered to organise the guiding aspects
  • Others needed to work with Chris on the logistics and/or take a lead on visits
Music / Singing Including “Meonwara the Musical” and “Mama Meon”   
  • Stuart Holt & newly announced Meon Valley community choir
  • Musicians in the Valley (Frances Keppel, Meon Valley Orchestra?)
Saxon “Gardening”  
  • Olive Hathaway (Meon Valley Gardening Club)
Other ideas which can be developed
Offers to develop, lead these are welcome
Performances – Play writing, puppetry & stage plays (Again maybe “Meonwara the Musical” or “Mama Meon”) Meon Players, Titchfield Festival Theatre.
Building a boat – long-ship or coracle? (Darren Hammerton)
Here’s how – www.youtube.com/watch?v=78kpzwGmBxk
Writing Competition –sponsoring a Saxon History prize for in the 2014 Winchester Writers Conference
Painting /art festival
Making authentic replicas of Saxon weaving loom and musical instruments
Meon Valley Cycle and/or Rambling trail – with a ‘treasure hunt’/quiz at each village
Saxon Life – experience what it was like for Saxon children. An opportunity for schools at the Sustainability Centre (possibly residential) Janet Hammerton will liaise with Linda & Ross and other schools in the Meon Valley
Woodland classroom at the Sustainability Centre for some of our workshops and meetings
South Downs Green Fair (at the Sustainability Centre 12th May and annually) – an opportunity to engage
South Downs National Park & South Downs Way – creating a Tourism offer
Archaeological dig on Salisbury Plain (Summer, 2013) Laura Joyner (Wessex Archaeology)

Click here to register your interest in the activities

Research & explore

  • Undertaking geo-physical (as on Time Team), field-walking, metal detecting and other studies of the Meon Valley.
  • Learning about the Saxon era from historians and archaeologists.
  • Cataloguing, drawing & illustrating artefacts from local Saxon excavations

Visiting & explore Saxon heritage

  • visits to national centres of Saxon Heritage e.g. Wintonceastre (Winchester), Sutton Hoo, West Stow Village, the Staffordshire Hoard, the Saxon Princess, the British Museum Anglo-Saxon England, the British Library Saxon treasures
  • exhibitions in the Meon Valley and the Winchester Discovery Centre of iconic Saxon heritage including the British Museum Sutton Hoo exhibition

Creating, Doing & Making using authentic materials

  • coppicing
  • making embroidery frames, weaving looms, musical instruments… from original materials
  • creating embroidery and weaving typical of the era;  to hang in the churches of the Meon Valley
  • building a round house
  • building and launching on the Meon a Saxon long boat or coracle

Creative arts & Performance

  • creating and celebrating music, songs and poetry
  • poetry (from Beowulf to The Seafarer)
  • re-enactments, story-telling
  • painting
  • puppets
  • plays

Getting fit

  • Meon Valley Bike Ride & Saxon pilgrimage trail
  • From the Source of the Meon, via the villages of the Valley to the Solent (about 20 miles?)

Feasting, fun & learning

  • Encouraging families, children,  young people, mums, blokes, older people of the valley to have Saxon fun
  • Community Festival
  • School learning days
  • Historical re-enactments
  • Celebrating our Saxon heritage in the mead halls of the Meon Valley

Sharing & contributing

  • developing the web site
  • an exhibition to tour the Community Halls and Churches of the Meon Valley, Winchester etc.
  • a guide / trail based on the map of the ‘”Provincia Meanwarorum” (the Province of the Meonwara)
  • Oral history and digital recording, no not of the Saxon era!, but of  our programme and of the archaeological excavations over the last 40 years
  • Writing the village chapters of the ‘THE STORY OF THE SAXONS IN THE MEON VALLEY’
  • Contributing to the national heritage of the Saxon era and to the commemoration in 2016 of the 950th anniversary of the Battles of Stamford Bridge & Hastings, the end of the Saxon era, but not the Saxon heritage

Getting better at it

  • Training by historians and archaeologists