Families are being invited to join in a community archaeological dig in a bid to discover medieval Midsomer Norton.

The first of a series of events will take place at Midsomer Norton Town Hall, during half term, on Thursday 15th February between 2-6pm and the entrance is free.

The initiative, open to all ages, is being led by Bath and North East Somerset Heritage and Planning services and the Midsomer Norton Society with the aim of involving as many local people as possible in the eventual big dig on Saturday 21st July. This is when people living in the town will be invited to excavate a 1m square patch of ground in their gardens.

“This is an incredibly exciting initiative,” said Michael Rich, Chairman of the Midsomer Norton Society and Midsomer Norton Town Councillor. “The more people take part, the more excavation squares we can have, and thereby build up a clearer picture of the nature of Midsomer Norton on the ground in medieval times to add to the extensive research amassed by the society. We’re really keen to have children and families all working together.”

As well as registering for the ‘Big Dig’ and receiving a briefing pack at the February 15 event there will be lots more to do and see, including displays about how the Big Dig will work and why the experts are interested in digging in the town. Visitors will have the opportunity to discover about life in medieval times and handle objects of the period from the Roman Baths collection.

Participants will also be able find out about the Historic Environment Record and look up their house/its location online to see what things have been found nearby.

The Midsomer Norton Society will be running 15-minute short talks on the medieval history of the town based on original research carried out over the last decade which took members at one stage to France. There will even be a chance to have a go at ‘striking’ medieval coins.