University of Salford archaeologists, alongside community volunteers are to excavate the Manchester cavalry barracks which housed the troops sent out to disperse protesters in the notorious Peterloo Massacre of 1819.
The dig will investigate Hulme Barracks, which were occupied by the army from approximately 1804 until 1915 and were the base for the Peterloo cavalry of the 15th King’s Hussars who also fought at Waterloo.
Currently the St Georges Park playing fields and community centre, the archaeologists hope to discover a wide selection of finds on the site, which in 1839, was reported to house 399 men and 20 officers. There has been no building work on the site since it was demolished in 1915, so there are high hopes of recovering soldiers’ equipment and everyday items from over 100 years of continuous occupation, which spanned Manchester’s development from a garrison town into one of the world’s greatest industrial cities.
The Hulme Barracks dig is part of the Dig Greater Manchester project, run by the University of Salford and supported by Manchester City Council and the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities. During the four year project, each borough of Greater Manchester will host an excavation, with local community members given full training to assist the professional archaeologists.
To sign up as a volunteer, email Brian Grimsditch email@example.com
There’ll be no work on Sunday 7 July and the last day (13 July) is a public open day when anyone can come along to see the excavations.