On our recent visit to the Ancient Technology Centre, we were astounded by the progress over the past few months. Even at this stage, three months short of the launch date – lacking flushing toilets and a few other finishing touches – the Viking Longhouse is remarkable.
It looks so very different from the skeletal structure of over a year ago, and it is hard to imagine that this wonderful building has been created now, in the twenty-first century. Its creators have largely eschewed modern-day tools and techniques, which makes it an even more remarkable achievement.
We sat down with ATC tutor Anthony Brown, who shared the latest developments with us. He said: “We’ve finished the roof, so we’ve been able to work on the inside of the building now it is watertight. We’ve built sleeping platforms either side, and this wonderful fire pit in the middle here.
“We’ve also done shutters over the windows and they keep the light out during the night and also the drafts which is the important thing. The internal works of the building are really coming together.”
One of the volunteers, Gilly Lockie, who was carving names in a runic alphabet on the interior walls, told us that she felt her “heart is here”.
Anthony concluded: “I think I speak for all the volunteers and children who’ve helped and all the members of staff here that we’re delighted we’re finally reaching the conclusion, and actually providing a place for the children to come and stay – it’s going to be amazing.”
With the launch date of 14 May 2010 nearing fast, make sure you visit us again to see video, photographs and a write-up of the day.