ARCHAEOLOGISTS are digging deep to uncover the history of a historic country park hall in a bid to restore it to its former glory.

A dig was staged at Rock Hall in Moses Gate Country Park over the bank holiday weekend to which families were invited to learn more about its rich history.

Led by Stuart Noon and DigVentures, workshops were held for those new to excavations before giving them the opportunity to uncover the hidden history of Rock Hall.

The Bolton News: Archaeological dig at Rock Hall

The dig was held in partnership with the Banana Enterprise Network which is leading the campaign to reopen Rock Hall for the community.

Jayne Allman, CEO of the Banana Enterprise Network, said: “The projects are key to showing the Heritage Fund there is historical significance to this, which there definitely is.

“There is such a rich history here and we’re only really scratching the surface so far. It’s so hard to find much about its history online. Thomas Bonsor Crompton was key to the paper making around the country which was based here but we know so little about him.

“We’ve started writing a book and we are learning so much all the time. It’s been great to see families and kids getting involved and learning more with this dig. People have been walking past asking what’s going on and it’s been fantastic to give people the history.

“We’ve found the footprint of Vale House, which is elsewhere in the park and we can’t wait to dig there too and find out more about that.

“There’s no sign of it here anymore which will be great to get digging there. “DigVentures have been great to work with on this dig and have been so good at helping to educate people.

The Bolton News:  Jayne Allman, CEO of the Banana Enterprise Network, at the Rock Hall dig

(Jayne Allman, CEO of the Banana Enterprise Network, at the Rock Hall dig)

“These and other projects are vital in securing the funding to renovate the hall and bring back Rock Hall as a great community asset. We’ve got so many people working on different things to help us work on our case for the Heritage Lottery funding with so many great volunteers too who care so much about bringing back Rock Hall for the community.”

Stuart added: "It's great to be part of a project that is putting the industrial heritage of Rock Hall back into the centre of the community of Moses Gate Country Park where it began."

The dig has cost around £25,000 and was funded by the £99,600 National Lottery Heritage Fund the charity received in March this year.

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