DIGGING has started for the first time in 30 years to unearth more secrets at Runcorn’s ancient Norton Priory.

The excavation hopes to reveal more about the moat system around the monastic precinct.

Senior keeper Lynn Smith said: “It’s the first day of the dig, so early days, but archaeological features seem to be appearing.”

Archeologist Dan Garner, who directed the Chester amphitheatre excavations, is leading a team of volunteers on a week-long exploration.

A 10 metre square trench has been dug. Tithe maps show the medieval priory had an extensive system of moats and drains. Some of these features were found in excavations in the 1970s.

A reunion is being held for everyone who took part in the original digs on Sunday, September 29.

It will be a chance to talk about old times, look at photographs and share your stories.

The event will include an update on new plans for developing the Norton Priory Museum as part of a Heritage Lottery Fund application, followed by a tour of the new excavation site.

Refreshments will be provided.

If you wish to come or want to share your stories, please contact Claire Broadhurst at Norton Priory on 01928 569 895 or email info@nortonpriory.org