A MEMORIAL to King Harold will be restored back to its former glory.

King Harold is buried in Waltham Abbey Church and the memorial stone that marks his life is to be restored.

The monument is the focus for the annual memorial event commemorating his death on October 14, organised by the King Harold Day Society.

Conservation company Bakers of Danbury took the original work in 1964 and have donated and carried out the restoration work on the new, inscribed plaque.

Waltham Abbey Town Council Mayor Helen Kane said: "The town council is delighted that the memorial stone has been restored.

"The King Harold stone is the focus of King Harold Day every October - one of the biggest events in the town's social calendar - and I am sure I speak for everyone in the town in thanking everyone involved with the refurbishment project."

The monument was originally installed in the churchyard in 1964 by Rev'd Dick Darby and is a block of rough granite with one small polished space with the inscription 'Harold, King of England-obit 1066'.

The block in front of the memorial stone, with the inscription 'This stone marks the position of the high altar behind which King Harold is said to be buried 1066', has been cleaned.

This marks the spot of the altar, when the church was being rebuilt in the later 12th century, so is not connected to the church Harold built.

On Saturday and Sunday, May 13 and 14, a dig by University College London’s Institute of Archaeology and the West Essex Archaeological Group will be held.

As a community dig, volunteers will help to undertake test evaluations within the orchard area of the Abbey Gardens.

The digs will investigate the building of the great monastic church of the 13th century and the Tudor house built in the church grounds following the dissolution of the monastery in 1540.

As well as providing training for volunteers in archaeological techniques, the dig aims to increase awareness of the importance of the church to the public who are welcome to watch the digs taking place.

The digs are licenced by the Lee Valley Regional Park Authority as part of its 50th anniversary events. This is all part of the 950th anniversary events commemorating the death of King Harold at the Battle of Hastings.

The events have been made possible by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund to a partnership led by Epping Forest District Museum.