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East Ayrshire Council’s Arts and Museums service is pleased to announce another fantastic weekend event at the Dean Castle. The event, Raiders of the Dean Park, which has been made possible by European Regional Development Funding has been conceived as part of Scottish Archaeology month and is expected to bring visitors to the medieval castle from all over Scotland this September.

It’s title has been taken directly from the famous film, Raiders of the Lost Ark which features the adventures of one of the world’s most famous archaeologists, Indiana Jones. Many of the themes within the film will be recreated for all the family to explore and an insight into the real world of archaeology will be given by two real archaeologists, Jim Divine of the Huntarian Museum, Glasgow and Julian Richards, star of BBCTV’s Meet the Ancestors.

The creation of commissioned pieces, inspired by sets from the famous Indiana Jones film trilogy have been specially commissioned and pieces are being designed and produced by students from the Royal Society of Music and Drama (RSMAD) in Glasgow. The sets will transform the courtyard with various pieces including a knights coffin, a skull statue and a rope bridge There will even be typical Indiana transport in the form of a 1930’s motorbike and sidecar.

As well as the sets, there will be a fascinating excavating pit where people can try their hand at hunting for buried treasure. The pit will be supervised by Jim Divine, from the Hunterian Museum in Glasgow, where he will show how archaeologist s would excavate a site and how they would document their finds. The pit will contain many real artefacts including roman coins, which if found can be kept by the people who are lucky enough to find them.

‘We are delighted to be able to bring another large scale event to the castle and be part of Scottish Archaeology month. This one sounds so interesting. It’s a true mix of being educational but also great fun by combining fiction with fact. I think its everyone’s dream to find a real bit of treasure from the past, it’s fantastic that people will be able to do just that.’

Julian Richards from BBCTV’s Meet the Ancestors will be holding two ‘audience with’ sessions for people who would like to find out more about our ancestors.

There will also be fencing for children with foam swords, replica objects to be handled in the Castle and on show for the first time, a replica Bronze age tomb encasing special artefacts.