VOLUNTEERS can now make history at Runcorn’s ancient monastic ruins.

Norton Priory has commissioned its first excavation since 1987 and is inviting members of the community to join the dig.

Leading the excavation is Dan Garner, the archaeologist previously responsible for the excavation of the Roman amphitheatre in Chester.

Thanks to funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, places are available every day from September 23 to October 4, excluding the weekend, for £10 per day.

It is hoped the dig will unearth secrets of the priory’s medieval moat.

Lynn Smith, senior Keeper at Norton Priory said: “Although Norton Priory is the most excavated monastic site in Europe, there is so much more to learn. It should be a fascinating dig and it’s great that we can invite the public just as they were involved in 1987.”

The excavation will only be a small investigation so only 10 volunteers will be required each day.

The results of the dig will be revealed at the Norton Priory conference at the Merseyside Maritime Museum in Liverpool on October 26.

Visitors to the Priory will also be able to come and look at the excavation and see the finds as they are uncovered. There will also be an opportunity to see and comment on the exciting plans for the new museum.

The excavation is part of development work for a major capital project. The museum is preparing to submit a second round application to the Heritage Lottery Fund later this year.

Archaeology enthusiasts can book online from the Norton Priory website, www.nortonpriory.org or at our museum reception.

Participants must be 8 years old and over. Any participant under 18 years old must be accompanied by an adult.

Although no experience is necessary, participants will need to commit to a full day of learning and excavating.