Hornets back in time to West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village

Hornets have been studying the Anglo – Saxons looking at their language, writing, and the way they lived.  Whilst some of our class mates were investigating the Vikings over in Denmark, the rest of us travelled back in time to visit the Anglo Saxon village at West Stow.

Replica Anglo Saxon helmetWest Stow is a reconstructed Anglo-Saxon village built on exactly the same layout as the original village.  The whole site was excavated between 1965 and 1972.  The whole site was stripped and excavated, so for the first time in England there was an entire Anglo-Saxon village to study.  After the excavation a number of buildings were reconstructed on their original sites.  Knowledge from the excavations was put into practical reconstructions, using the tools and methods believed to have been available to the Anglo-Saxons.

A smaller than usual Hornets class gathered at the mini bus, full of excitement ready for the trip to Suffolk.  The journey there was punctuated by excited squeals as we passed famous fast food outlets, about as far removed from the food of the Anglo-Saxons as you can get.   After a very long time we finally pulled up at the village ready to start our adventure.

Anglo Saxon LyreThe first thing we saw was the museum packed with artefacts recovered from the excavations.  There were lots of graves on the site and each one contained some small treasure important to the person.  Many of them had combs and jewellery, a few even had swords and shields. Our guide for the day talked to us about what life was like in the village and showed us some objects found on the site.  He told us all about them and how they were used.  The best bit though was when he played us a tune on a replica Lyre.  Anglo-Saxon pop music perhaps?

After lunch we started to explore the village itself.  There were lots of buildings to explore and loads of artefacts that we could touch, play with or wear.  In one of the houses there was a fire burning.  We liked this one the best as it was nice and warm but it did make our clothes a little stinky!  Our guide took us into the Great Hall where we learned more about the villages, we even saw how they used to lock their doors, although it wasn’t very secure as you could unlock the door with your finger.


Eventually, of course, we ran out of time and we made our way back to the bus and the long trip home.  We helped pass the time by singing pop songs VERY LOUDLY!  Mr Hoath said he preferred the Lyre and that all this modern music was a bit too noisy.

We all learned loads on our trip, why not ask us why the Anglo-Saxons built their houses over pits? Or what an Anglo-Saxon key looked like?