Do you remember the TV programme ‘Time Team’ hosted by Tony Robinson? Well I do, and I was always fascinated by what the time team got up to and what was found during the dig. I’m also interested in how old buildings can be regenerated and given new life with a new use. So volunteering at Lister Steps was a great fit for my interests, while being ‘in between jobs’.
I signed up to be a volunteer to help record the building before any of the changes start happening and was invited to an afternoon session to hear all about the Old Library and the Lister Steps project. Our first day was on 11th September, there were four of us volunteers and we were introduced to the archaeology team from the Museum of Liverpool. They showed us one of the walls that needed recording, and to my surprise it a wall full of graffiti! It was explained that archaeology wasn’t just about what’s under the ground, but also above. In fact archaeologists are interested in anything that’s historical, social and culturally significant.
On 15th September, I attended Lister Steps' first Heritage Open Day event. Vanessa, who is one of the archaeologists, explained some of the artefacts that had been found in dig sites around the Liverpool area. She wanted to show the visitors what might be found during the dig that will be taking place at the library next year...Time Team here I come! It was lovely to meet some of the visitors who were sharing their memories of the Old Library.
So, what did I get out of my volunteering experience? I got to meet new people; I got to find out more about the project (it’s so much better being involved); I got to learn new skills and brush up on my maths; I got an insight into the work of an archaeologist...and although it was too early for the ‘Time Team’ experience, I’m certainly looking forward to the dig next year.
I’d encourage anyone interested to get involved, Olivia and her team are very welcoming.