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Grimes Graves

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Thetford IP26 5DE, England
+44 1842 810656
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English Heritage Members Event

This was mind blowing. Lying in a 2 foot shaft so far underground seeing neolithic toolmarks was... read more

Reviewed 21 October 2017
Paul G
via mobile
Interesting site

Interesting that you can climb down a small mine shaft but kind of lacking in things to do for... read more

Reviewed 17 October 2017
Janet J
,
Essex, United Kingdom
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Grimes Graves is an English Heritage site with 433 Neolithic flint mines - one of which has been excavated and is open to the public. A fantastic opportunity to experience real history from 4600 years ago, and enjoy a truly unique landscape with its lunar-like craters above the in-filled mine-shafts There is a small exhibition centre, with a shop that has coffee facilities and packaged snacks, and there is a 96 acre grassland area of special scientific importance for walking and picnics (dogs, on leads, are welcome). Children are provided with a bag of binoculars, bug-boxes, colouring-pages and pencils to help them enjoy the site The exhibition has wall displays, samples of the tools and materials being excavated and videos that explain the history of the site and flint-knapping A very special geological feature is visable from the site: periglacial striations (which were caused by freezing and thawing the chalk substrate in the last ice-age) have created amazing straight lines of alternating vegetation and were formed over 10,000 years ago Whilst the site is open to everybody, with a small carpark, the mine, which is accessed by a robust 32-step ladder to a depth of over 7 metres has, for health and safety requirements, an age restriction for children who have to be 10, or over. It is also a requirement that a helmet (provided) is worn at all times whilst in the mine-shaft Whether you are an archaeologist with a special interest or a family looking for a unique experience, the team at the site welcome you and encourage you to ask questions and learn about Neolithic-man and the importance of flint as a Stone-age tool The site is open from April to September, everyday from 10.00am until last entry at 5.30pm, and is also open in October but only Wedneday to Sunday from 10.00am, with last entry at 4.30pm
  • Excellent44%
  • Very good30%
  • Average16%
  • Poor5%
  • Terrible5%
Travellers talk about
“mine shaft” (18 reviews)
“climb down” (8 reviews)
Suggested Duration: 1-2 hours
LOCATION
Thetford IP26 5DE, England
CONTACT
Website
+44 1842 810656
Write a ReviewReviews (168)
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1 - 10 of 166 reviews

Reviewed 21 October 2017 via mobile

This was mind blowing. Lying in a 2 foot shaft so far underground seeing neolithic toolmarks was unbelievable. As with every Members Event we were overwhelmed with expertise and enthusiasm. We have been members for a long time now and we take in 3 or...More

3  Thank Paul G
Tim L, Historic Site Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 28 October 2017

WOW! It is absolutely delightful for us to hear such an enthusiasic review of the tour of the Greenwell shaft - I was in your group, that day, and also had a brilliant experience with a visitor pointing me into a chamber (I hadn't entered...More

Reviewed 17 October 2017

Interesting that you can climb down a small mine shaft but kind of lacking in things to do for such a large site. unfortunately we were not allowed down the main mine shaft as this had to be pre booked through English Heritage which you...More

1  Thank Janet J
Tim L, Historic Site Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 28 October 2017

Thank you for visiting us and taking the time to write a review. You are quite correct in saying that the activities on the site are limited - it is a Site of Special Scientific Interest, so there is little we are allowed to do...More

Reviewed 17 October 2017

We have tried before to visit and always picked out of season! This time we were lucky. The site is fascinating with all the undulations of the mines and when you stand and look at the size of the site it must have been quite...More

1  Thank unimumNorfolk
Tim L, Historic Site Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 28 October 2017

Thank you for your review and glad you found us before the end-of-season closure! There are only two mine-shafts that are accessible - the public and Greenwell mines - but access to the Greenwell is very limited because of entry issues and the risk to...More

Reviewed 15 October 2017 via mobile

This site is just a huge field with undulations in the ground where flint mines were. It is hard to get interested in and impossible to get children interested to pay attention. It could be so much better if English Heritage put in information boards...More

Thank carol b
Tim L, Historic Sites Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 16 October 2017

We're really sorry that your visit was so disappointing for you and your children - all of us on site try really hard to explain the history and archaeology in order to make it accessible and exciting, especially as 'the Stone Age' is part of...More

Reviewed 10 October 2017

Managed to get on a limited trip down Greenwell's pit and loved every moment. Amazing site, 4000 year old hole in the ground and knowledgeable, friendly staff. Thank you so much!More

1  Thank James S
Tim L, Historic Site Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 11 October 2017

We're delighted that you enjoyed the experience so much! Access to the Greenwell pit is limited whilst we assess any environmental effects by allowing it (opened for the first time this year)so, as one of the few, it is great you got so much from...More

Reviewed 10 September 2017 via mobile

Unbelievable to try to imagine the scale of flint-mining with such primitive tools. Small but informative information centre with friendly, helpful staff. Going down the actual mine and trying to envisage working conditions is quite an experience. For those of the older generation who learned...More

1  Thank propmill
Tim L, Historic Sites Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2017

It does take imagination to appreciate how skilled and determined our Neolithic predecessors were to dig these shafts and uncover the flint and it is great that, descending the mine, you had this experience. These mines were the workshop for producing the tools which drove...More

Reviewed 5 September 2017 via mobile

We've been meaning to visit for a while and I'm glad we did. An educational oasis in a last open field. The mine was fun to go down and look around, the moor like field provided some nice walks, the information centre was educational and...More

2  Thank Spencer B
Tim L, Historic Sites Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2017

Love the title of your review - and we love the review itself (although we need to bring Maria down from cloud-nine, now!) Seriously, we are delighted that you got so much from your visit as we try (all of us!) to make visits as...More

Reviewed 4 September 2017

The flint mine was very interesting - you need to be OK with ladders. The small visitor centre provided adequate information. However to see the landscape you really needed to be up in a balloon and whilst the "pits" were everywhere one could not really...More

2  Thank John A
Tim L, Historic Sites Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 3 October 2017

We would very much love to have a platform so that our visitors could benefit from a high-rise panoramic-view of the site - but we are limited in what we can do, being designated SSSI and required to protect and preserve what we have We...More

Reviewed 27 August 2017

This place represents one of Britain's oldest mining sites and the name means Quarries of the pagan god Grim, by Anglo-Saxons. The flint itself was formed millions of years ago. A significant value, both practical and ceremonial, was attached to mining and what was mined;...More

3  Thank Nina H
Tim L, Rob Pyatt at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 11 October 2017

Thanks ever so much for the great review! Pleased you enjoyed your visit -The site is full of Different periods of pre-hostory that myself and the staff are on hand and happy to explain

Reviewed 26 August 2017 via mobile

Been doing the rounds of English Heritage sites in this area and saw this. Was really interesting and staff as well as information displays were very interesting. We went down the 30 foot hole to see the workings underground. Thankfully head safety hamlets were supplied...More

2  Thank MartynDyer
Tim L, Historic Sites Steward at Grimes Graves, responded to this reviewResponded 27 August 2017

Thank you for getting back to us with your comments, and it's great that you got so much from the visit. We are limited with what we can do on the site - it is so protected that we can't even disturb it by putting...More

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