Thames Discovery Programme

19 January 2009

The Museum of London is a partner in the Thames Discovery Programme (TDP), and will be providing project support over the next three years.

The foreshore of the river Thames is the longest open – air archaeological site in London. However, many of the exposed archaeological sites are often unrecognised and unprotected, and almost all are vulnerable to the twice – daily scouring of the tidal river, and thus require close monitoring. Building on the Museum of London’s 1993 – 1999 Thames Archaeological Survey, the Thames Discovery Programme aims to encourage wider public involvement with the historic Thames. The project is managed by the Thames Estuary Partnership and the Thames Explorer Trust with Heritage Lottery Funding and will run from 2008 - 2011.

TDP archaeologists will survey 20 archaeological sites along the tidal river, supported by the work of the Foreshore Recording and Observation Groups (FROG), who will monitor the surveyed sites for changes, as the daily tides scour away the remaining archaeological features. The FROG will be made up of volunteers who are trained in foreshore recording techniques, health and safety and digital recording by the TDP team.

The TDP are running a regular programme of FREE events and training days for anyone interested in the Thames Discovery Programme.  Events are free, and suitable for anyone over the age of 18.

More detailed information about the team, the archaeology and the project can be found on their Thames Discovery Programme website: (external link)

Pottery identified during an archaeological survey on the Thames foreshore