News & Updates

Patron Claire opens the Haringey History Fair & our potting is popular

Friday 27 May 2022

On Saturday 14th May, our patron Claire Skinner with Charlie Andrew and Nick Peacey, reinforced with kind support from Charlie's brother Tom over from Norway, enjoyed a busy morning at the FOHRK stall.

Claire made a stirring and inclusive speech to open the Fair.

Then children, parents, carers and even adults without any child as an excuse for getting enthralled had a wonderful time making coil pots in imitation of Highgate Ware while hearing about our project to bring the kiln back to Highgate Wood.

We made many new friends and look forward to seeing you all again soon.  

This Saturday our patron Claire Skinner opens the Haringey History Fair at Bruce Castle Museum

Wednesday 11 May 2022

FOHRK at Bruce Castle Museum

from 10.15am this Saturday 14th May 2022

  • Meet our patron Claire Skinner when she opens the Haringey History Fair


  • Nick Peacey  and Charlie Andrew from FOHRK will be at our stall throughout the morning

  • We'll have plenty of clay so youngsters can try making themselves a Roman pot!

Details of the day   

Highgate Wood walk 20.2.22 CANCELLATION

Sunday 20 February 2022

We regrat that due to the need for clearance of the results of Storm Eunice and predictions of more gusting winds

Highgate Wood is closed today, so the walk must be postponed.

We will be in touch soon with future plans.

Email for further information.

Nick Peacey

Secretary FOHRK


Highgate Wood walk SUNDAY 20th February 2.30

Saturday 12 February 2022

Our Trustee, Mike Hammerson,is leading a walk in Highgate Wood,

including a visit to the Roman kiln site, at 2.30pm on Sunday, 20th February.  

Meet at the Information Hut.  

Email to book a place.

Please include a mobile phone number.

Hugh Dennis and Claire Skinner star in our event next Saturday! at 6pm!

Sunday 23 January 2022

Hampstead Highgate Express Lifestyle > Heritage 

Outnumbered couple play Highgate Roman potters in fundraising sketch

Bridget Galton

Outnumbered stars Hugh Dennis and Claire Skinner will perform a sketch at a fundraiser aimed at returning a Roman pottery kiln to Highgate Wood.

The real life couple and local residents are patrons of the Friends of Highgate Roman Kiln (FOHRK) which hopes to rescue the kiln – excavated in the '60s and '70s – from storage in Bruce Castle Museum.

But first they need to raise £25,000 to build a new education exhibit in the wood. The couple are taking part in an evening of "heritage, archaeology and fun" at Lauderdale House, Highgate on January 29 to boost the £17,000 raised so far.

The highlight sees them play grandfather and granddaughter in a new sketch; A Highgate potter’s life; a "plausible glimpse" of pottery making in Highgate Wood in AD 156.The audience will also enjoy sparkling wine, nibbles and a talk by Dennis about presenting More 4's archaeology programme The Great British Dig: History In Your Garden.

And there are contributions from Harvey Sheldon, who led the original excavations of the pottery-making site, and FORHK Secretary and replica Roman kiln builder Nick Peacey. 

Catherine West MP and FORHK Chair hosts the evening and said: "It’s time the kiln came home to Highgate, so this amazing survival can inspire community learning, crafts and heritage engagement."

Numbers are restricted due to Covid but book a place at or donate at

Invitation evening with FOHRK, Hugh Dennis & Claire Skinner

Sunday 16 January 2022

Our Chair, Catherine West MP and Trustees of the Friends of Highgate Roman Kiln (FOHRK) invite you to join us at

Lauderdale House, Highgate Hill, N6 5AG

Saturday, 29th January, 2022 


for fun, heritage and archaeology, with nibbles and sparkling (and other) wine, in aid of FOHRK

Our stars: FOHRK patrons, Hugh Dennis and Claire Skinner


The event will be chaired by Catherine West MP and will include contributions from Harvey Sheldon, who led the excavations of the pottery-making site in Highgate Wood, and Nick Peacey, FOHRK Secretary and kiln builder


Hugh Dennis and Claire Skinner

Hugh will talk about his work on The Great British Dig: History in Your Garden, the popular and quietly radical archaeological programme he presents for More 4

 Hugh and Claire will then become grandfather and granddaughter to perform the premiere of the 'duologue', A Highgate potter’s  life, a ‘plausible glimpse’ of pottery making in Highgate Wood in AD 156 


The programme is below. We shall have to restrict numbers in the House, so please reserve a place or places by email to our address:

We greatly look forward to seeing you

With every good wish

Nick Peacey 

Secretary, FOHRK

07823 337137






Introduction and welcome, 

Catherine West MP


Update on developments in the FOHRK campaign

Nick Peacey


Presenting the Great British Dig: History in Your Garden

Hugh Dennis



Hugh Dennis, Harvey Sheldon


Introduction to A Highgate potters’ life, a ‘plausible glimpse’ of life in Highgate Wood in AD 150, when the Highgate Kiln was built

Harvey Sheldon and Nick Peacey 


A Highgate potter’s life

Hugh Dennis as the grandfather

Claire Skinner as the granddaughter



Harvey Sheldon


Conclusion and thanks

Catherine West

September 2021 campaign update

Sunday 12 September 2021

FOHRK has had a remarkable two months. From a standing start at the launch of our crowdfunding campaign on 1st July, generous donors have raised no less than £13,850, 55% of our campaign target of £25,000.

We hoped the plans to return the Roman kiln to Highgate Wood and create an inclusive learning programme around its conservation and exhibition would be popular but we did not anticipate the extent of enthusiasm we would find!

Catherine West, our patrons Claire Skinner and Hugh Dennis and all of us in FOHRK are hugely grateful to those who have contributed so much.  The campaign’s success has already allowed us to begin turning some of our plans to reality.


But, 55% of a target achieved is not 100% of a target achieved. We need to find that extra £11,150….


Just Giving:

BACS: Friends of Highgate Roman Kiln, CAFBANK, Sort code 40-52-40  Account 00031173

Cheque: Payable to Friends of Highgate Roman Kiln (FOHRK). Please send to: FOHRK, 35 Ulleswater Road, London N14 7BL.

West Stow Anglo-Saxon village: a trip back to 500 AD

Sunday 5 September 2021

We were delighted earlier this year to receive a most generous donation to our crowdfunding campaign from Rosie Boughton.

Rosie gave the money in memory of her friend, Jess Davies, with whom she worked as a member of the West Stow Environmental Archaeology Group between 1973 and 1979.

Nick Peacey, FOHRK secretary, visited the West Stow Anglo-Saxon village last week and found an exciting testament to the experimental archaeology needed to recreate huts more or less on the sites where the originals were excavated.

West Stow is a great place to stop if you are heading for Norfolk from London. 

FOHRK trustees have agreed that Rosie's donation will spent on experimental archaeology related to the Highgate Roman Kiln. 

Come Zooming with us 8pm - 9pm on Monday 26th July

Thursday 22 July 2021

At 8pm on Monday 26thJuly please join the Zoom webinar Fire, water, wood and clay: technologies for Roman Britain, for our times and for the future. FOHRK Trustees Charlie Andrew and Nick Peacey will talk about experiments with replica Roman kiln-building, and how they have engaged and inspired young people as well as our current work with schools, face-to-face and online. Then our partner Duncan Hooson, of Clayground Collective and Central St. Martins, will introduce the remarkable campaigner Carolina Rubio-Wright from Brooklyn, New York.

Carolina is a human rights lawyer and artist who uses arts activities, particularly clay and ceramics, as opportunities to make 'invisible' groups, such as the very poor and Mexican immigrants, 'visible' and empower them to understand their rights and  fight for them . You can see her and her project here:

For the link, register with Nick Peacey, Secretary of FOHRK:

Our campaign fund tops £12,500, half the £25,000 target

Friday 16 July 2021

Recent donations, including most generous gifts from Nicky Gavron, environmental campaigner and former Deputy Mayor of London, and from Rosie Boughton have swept us over the half way point in our fund-raising. Today's total on the campaign page stands at £12,675.

In commending our work, Nicky has written 'What an exciting project! Bringing history home for all ages!'  Rosie explains that her donation is in memory of her friend Jess Davies with whom she worked on an experimental archaeology project at West Stow. An anonymous donor wrote three days ago, ' We used to love walking in the woods years ago and watching the kiln being excavated and it's thrilling that it's going to be restored and re-housed.'

We in FOHRK, with our partners, have always designed the plan to return the kiln to Highgate Wood as a project for the whole community. It is wonderful to see this ambition being realised.