Volume 10 June 2006
1. Executive News
- Membership Drive
- Other Activities
2. WAC News
- WAC Website
- WAC Student Committee
- WAC Global Libraries Project
3. News of WAC Members
- The Archaeology of Liberty in an American Capital: Excavations in Annapolis (Mark P. Leone)
- Images, Representations and Heritage – Moving Beyond Modern Approaches to Archaeology (Editor: Ian Russell)
- Ethnographies of Archaeological Practice – Cultural Encounters, Material Transformations (Editor: Matt Edgeworth)
- Leaving Home (Radio programme presented by Christine Finn)
- In Conversation with Dorothy Lippert
4. Forthcoming Conferences And Events
- Mungo Festival
- Archaeology and Art on Tour
- The e-volution of Information Technology in Cultural Heritage: Where Hi-Tech Touches the Past: Risks and Challenges for the 21st Century
- Cumberland Island National Seashore international workshop: Preserving the World’s Heritage Resources
- Chacmool 2006: Decoding Implications of the Genographic Project for Archaeology
- CHAT 2006: Method and Practice in historical and contemporary archaeology
- The Art of the Animal Symposium
5. General News Items
- Good News and Bad for Historic Ships
- New Distance Learning Course: African American Heritage and Ethnography (National Park Service’s Ethnography Program)
- Peruvian E-magazine on Archaeology : Arkeos
- Archaeological Dialogues
- Society for American Archaeology Presents 2006 Excellence in Public Education Award to Richard M. Pettigrew
- Ur: A Video Essay on Tamil – Part 1
- Native American Museum Studies Position (Department of Anthropology, Northern Arizona University, USA)
- Commonwealth Scholarship in Zooarchaeology; (University of York, UK)
- Australian Archaeological Association Awards: Call for Nominations (4 Awards)
7. Excerpts from other archaeological newsletters
- SALON: the Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter No. 142: 19 June 2006
- SALON: the Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter No. 143: 3 July 2006
1. Executive News
The WAC Executive wishes to advise that plans to hold WAC-6 in Jamaica have changed. At the time of writing, there is insufficient financial support to adequately support participants from Indigenous groups and economically disadvantaged countries. Since the full participation of these groups is essential to the decision-making processes that are integral to WAC Congresses, we have decided to postpone WAC-6. The necessary support is within reach and we have several suitable venues under consideration.
The WAC meeting at Jamaica will now be held as an Inter-Congress. It will take place at the scheduled time, in May, 2007. The Executive would like to offer sincere gratitude to the Archaeological Society of Jamaica, and especially Dorrick Gray, Ainsley Henriques, Leslie-Gail Atkinson, Audene Brooks and Evelyn Thompson. Their efforts on behalf of WAC and on behalf of the archaeologists of Jamaica have been tremendous.
The Executive will announce the new date and venue of WAC-6 within the next two months. We anticipate a WAC-6 date of mid-2008 at the latest. In the meantime, we all look forward to a very successful Inter-Congress in Jamaica, in May, 2007.
Two books have come out in WAC book series in the last couple of months.
African Re-genesis: Confronting Social Issues in the Diaspora , edited by Jay Haviser and Kevin MacDonald , has just been published in the One World Archaeology series. is the first book to emphasise the relevancy of current research to contemporary issues in diaspora communities. The contributions to this book demonstrate how the spirit of Africa has survived and re-emerged through contacts with new environments and cultures. This series publishes the books that emerge from WAC Congresses and Inter-Congresses, and is edited by Joan Gero , Mark Leone and Robin Torrence .
The One World Archaeology Series has moved to Left Coast Press, a new publisher of academic, professional and popular materials in archaeology, as well as other humanities and social sciences. This press was launched in March 2005 by Mitch Allen , founder and former publisher of AltaMira Press, and former executive editor of Sage Publications. It produces publications for scholars and students in academic settings, professionals in heritage institutions, museums, and contract firms, and informed readers in the wider world. They have a particular interest in public archaeology and heritage management issues. Left Coast Press, Inc. publishes a series of research handbook with WAC, as well as the One World Archaeology series beginning with volume 48.
The first book in WAC’s new series with AltaMira Press, Worlds of Archaeologies, has just been published. Edited by Matt Edgeworth , Ethnographies of Archaeological Practice: Cultural Encounters, Material Transformations explores the production of archaeological knowledge from a range of ethnographic perspectives. This book challenges the conventional outward-looking direction of the anthropological and archaeological gaze. In order to fully understand forms of cultural production in the past, it argues, we also need to investigate – through turning the ethnographic perspective back onto ourselves – how knowledge of the past is produced by archaeologists in the present. WAC members are encouraged to submit proposals to this new series, which is edited by Heather Burke (email@example.com) and Alejandro Haber (firstname.lastname@example.org) .
After much anticipation, and much work by the Editors, Anne Pyburn (Indiana University) and Nick Shepherd (University of Cape Town) the first issues of Archaeologies: the Journal of the World Archaeological Congress, have arrived. Members should have their copies for 2005, as well as the first issue for 2006. We would like to thank all the people who have contributed to these volumes as well as the people who have done the translations for the journal, which are on the WAC web site.
Ines Domingo Sanz, WAC’s Membership Secretary, is starting a new membership drive. She is especially keen to obtain sponsorship for Indigenous people and people from economically disadvantaged countries. While the cost is low, the benefit to individuals is high. For example, it is possible to sponsor a student from an economically disadvantaged country for only $US15 a year-the cost of three or four coffees at a Starbucks in the USA. This would include the person getting a copy of the journal, which is already heavily subsidized by WAC. People who would like to sponsor a membership of WAC should contact Ines direct
ly on Ines.Domingo@uv.es.
The other major activity that has taken place in the last couple of months is a major mail-out of books for the Global Libraries program, which is outlined below by the Director of this Program, Sally May (email@example.com) . The other committee members are Marcia Bezerra (Brazil), Anita Cook (USA), Maia Langley (Portugal), Manoj Kumar Singh (India). A brochure has been designed and printed in both English and Spanish, and both financial and book contributions to the program are now coming in regularly. Further information on this program is below.
The Executive has also accepted a proposal for an Inter-Congress on Archaeological Theory, which will be held in Argentina and convened by Alejandro Haber . Being the fourth of its kind in South America, the meeting is to be held in the Andean town of Catamarca, from July 3rd to 7th 2007. Symposia proposals are being received till August 20th 2006, and should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, we are about to launch a new website, after many months of work on the part of Michael Ashley and Timo Bishop. This is the first stage of a long-term plan to develop our web capacities. We are very grateful to Michael and Timo for all the work and care they have put into this for us.
Claire Smith , for the Executive
2. WAC News
Over the past few months, the WAC website has been undergoing a thorough review and redesign. More than just a cosmetic makeover, all of the content in the site is being scrutinized, and the overall user interface has been designed to be much more accessible and user friendly. The site will be launched on July 20, with major updates scheduled throughout the year. Some of the key features include:
€ New server – The main site is being moved to a major web hosting company that will provide substantial speed improvements, as well as offering many dynamic web tools we will implement over the next few months.
€ Standardized and easy-to-use navigation – the content of every section and page of the WAC website is accessible using the navigation panel on the left side of each page.
€ News updates – the top WAC news stories will be updated frequently and are selectable on every page in the site.
€ Multi-lingual support – due to the simplified and standardized code structure, the site is easily translatable to other languages. Initially, we are using Babelfish to offer translation, but over the coming months the site will be translated into as many languages as possible.
Near term plans include:
Over the next three months – re-engineering the underlying web architecture to comply with international accessibility and web standards, as well as to add dynamic content generation functions and improved user experiences. We will be calling for new links to WAC member sites, as well as taking your suggestions for improving the WAC site in order to serve the WAC community to the fullest extent possible.
Over the next year – add modules specific to the mission of WAC, such as localized content, multi-lingual translation, worldwide activities and interest groups, forums and other communications and sharing technologies, multimedia, etc.
This work has been conducted under the guidance of the Internet and Global Communications Task Force, chaired by Michael Ashley . We welcome the exceptional efforts of Timo Bishop , who has not only designed the new site, but has also accepted the role of web master for the next year.
We welcome your comments, corrections and suggestions as development continues. Please submit all comments using the form provided on the site under the ‘About This Site’ section. We look forward to creating an exceptional portal for all of WAC’s activities worldwide.
WAC Student Committee
The WAC Student Committee has been officially set up. The objective of the Student Committee is to develop student representation and involvement in WAC. This means not only the expansion of student membership across the world, but also to incorporate more student voices into WAC discussions and activities. By orchestrating student participation, which has been often regarded as secondary in importance to archaeological congresses, in a timely manner, the Committee will promote innovative and thought-provoking discussions originating from student members within WAC. There are currently 9 members, from Argentina, Australia, Japan, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Norway and USA, on the Committee, which is likely to expand in the near future. The chair is Akira Matsuda (Japan), a PhD student of the Institute of Archaeology at University College London, United Kingdom, and the vice-chair is Arwa Badran (Jordan), a PhD student at the International Centre for Cultural and Heritage Studies at Newcastle University, United Kingdom.
WAC Global Libraries Project
The Global Libraries Project seeks to develop the collections of archaeological literature in libraries in developing countries. By supporting such libraries we hope to assist archaeology and cultural heritage students and professionals to undertake their study and work. There are currently 50 libraries from 37 different countries receiving donations. The Global Libraries Project relies on the donations of WAC members. Any book/journal/CD or video donations are greatly appreciated. Alternatively, we are in need of monetary donations to purchase new books for each library. If you would like further information or would like to make a donation please contact us: Attn: Sally May , Global Libraries, c/o Department of Archaeology, Flinders University of South Australia, GPO Box 2100, Adelaide, South Australia 5001 Phone: +61 8 8201 5307 Fax: +61 8 8201 2784 Email: email@example.com Website: Global Libraries
3. News of WAC Members
The Archaeology of Liberty in an American Capital: Excavations in Annapolis (Mark P. Leone)
What do archaeological excavations in Annapolis, Maryland reveal about daily life in the city’s history? Considering artifacts such as landscapes, printer’s type, ceramics, and spirit bundles, this engaging, generously illustrated, and original study illuminates the lives of the city’s residents – walking, reading, talking, eating, and living together in both freedom and oppression for more than three hundred years. Interpreting the results of one of the most innovative large-scale and long-range project in contemporary American archaeology, The Archaeology of Liberty in an American Capital speaks powerfully to the struggle for liberty, particularly among African Americans and the poor. Leone uses material excavated from several dozen sites in and around Annapolis to show what historical archaeology can tell us about the past and present of this key city in American history. We learn how slavery and racism coexisted with freedom and how deepening poverty coexists with wealth amassed in ever fewer hands. We come to understand how a steep hierarchy of wealth before the American Revolution produced an independent American with that hierarchy intact afterwards, but with the wealthy even more powerful than before. This
study of power uses the archaeological record to connect social conditions in the eighteenth century to their results in the twenty-first.”
Images, Representations and Heritage – Moving Beyond Modern Approaches to Archaeology (Editor: Ian Russell )
Exploring the developments of recent archaeological theory, the arguments of Images, Representations and Heritage move beyond modern understandings of what archaeology is towards active, participatory and poetic archaeological thought and practice. Rather than focusing on what is produced through process (artefacts, monuments, interpretive centres, etc.), the contributors are concerned with what they are doing, about taking part, about participating reflexively in the tradition of expressing and representing understandings of the past. This volume does not conjure up romantic beliefs about the project of archaeology. Rather, it signals a fundamental revision of archaeology – not what it is, but what it can do. With contributions from: Jenny Blain , Sheffield Hallam University; Stephen A. Brighton , University of Maryland; Andrew Cochrane , Cardiff University; Kay Edge , Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University; Christine A. Finn , University of Bristol; Cornelius Holtorf , Lunds Universitet; Maev Kennedy , The Guardian; Stephanie Koerner , University of Manchester; Oleg Missikoff , Libera Università Internazionale degli Studi Sociali Guido Carli; Tim Neal , University of Sheffield; Charles E. Orser , Jr, Illinois State University; Ian Russell , Trinity College Dublin; George S. Smith , National Parks Service; Deirdre Stritch , Trinity College Dublin; Anita Synnestvedt , University of Gothenburg; Robert Wallis , Richmond, the American International University in London; and Frank H. Weiner , Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Available May 2006. For more information go to www.springer.com
Ethnographies of Archaeological Practice – Cultural Encounters, Material Transformations (Editor: Matt Edgeworth)
Ethnographic perspectives are often used by archaeologists to study cultures both past and present – but what happens when the ethnographic gaze is turned back to look at archaeological practices themselves? That is the question posed by this book, challenging our ideas about relationships between subject and object, observer and observed, explainers and explained. This book explores the production of archaeological knowledge from a range of ethnographic perspectives. Fieldwork spans large parts of the world, with sites in Turkey, the Netherlands, Mexico, Brazil, Italy, Germany, the USA and the United Kingdom being covered. Chapters focus on excavation, inscription, heritage management, student training digs and many other aspects of archaeological practice. These experimental ethnographic studies are situated on the intersection of archaeology and anthropology, questioning basic tenets of both disciplines and moving towards a more holistic study of the past. Contributors: Thomas Yarrow (Cambridge, UK); David Van Reybrouck and Dirk Jacobs (Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Universite Libre de Bruxelles and Katholieke Universiteit Brussel, Belgium); Charles Goodwin (UCLA, Berkeley, USA); Blythe E. Roveland (St. John’s University, New York, USA); Jonathan Bateman (Council for British Archaeology, York, UK); Cornelius Holtorf (University of Lund, Sweden); John Carman (Birmingham University, UK); Oguz Erdur (Columbia University, USA); Michael Wilmore (University of Adelaide, Australia); Angela McClanahan (University of Manchester, UK); Hakon Karlsson and Anders Gustafsson (Gothenborg University and National Heritage Board, Gothenburg University, Sweden); Denise Maria Cavalcante Gomes (Universidad de Sao Paolo, Brazil); Timoteo Rodriguez (UCLA Berkeley, USA); Lisa Breglia (Wesleyan University, USA). Editor: Matt Edgeworth is an archaeologist and social anthropologist whose main research focuses on the interface between the two disciplines. He is currently working freelance for archaeological units in the United Kingdom, directing excavation and other fieldwork projects. Further information : www.altamirapress.com This is the first book in the new WAC Worlds of Archaeology Series, published by Altamira Press. ISBN 0-7591-0845-5 Paperback / ISBN 0-7591-0844-7 Hardback. Can be ordered outside the USA through the distributors NBN International and available on Amazon and other online booksellers.
Leaving Home (Radio programme presented by Christine Finn)
Writer Fellow from the J.B.Priestley Library, University of Bradford, UK, Christine Finn , is presenting a 20-minute BBC 3 Radio programme called Leaving Home which is an excavation of her family house before she dismantled its rooms after her parents’ deaths. The producer, Marya Burgess , recorded Christine as she walked around telling the stories of rooms and artifacts, how they connected with her parents and my own childhood there, and the sounds of it being lived in over 35 years. Christine reports it was certainly a cathartic process. The original idea was to find that space between holding on and letting go of memories embedded in objects and buildings. Since making the programme in March, Christine almost emptied the house of objects, but has decided not to sell it, just yet. Leaving Home airs on Monday. July 17th, 7.50pm UK time, between the Proms concert.
In Conversation with Dorothy Lippert
The Smithsonian’s Dorothy Lippert talks about the rewards of repatriation in Archaeology (published by the Archaeological Institute of America). Dorothy reports “I don’t think archaeologists could maintain the argument that they were working for the public good when they were treating some members of the public as if they weren’t fully human.” Check out the full article at http://www.archaeology.org/0607/etc/conversations.html
…..and congratulations to Inés Domingo Sanz , WAC’s Membership Secretary, for being awarded the Premio Extraordinario de Tesis Doctoral prize from the from the University of Valencia for the best thesis of the year in the Faculty of Geography & History.
4. Forthcoming Conferences and Events
Mungo Festival (Australia)
The Mungo Festival will celebrate the cultural and scientific significance of the Willandra Lakes World Heritage Area to indigenous and non-indigenous Australians. It will communicate to all Australians important messages about culture, climate and landscape changes. The Mungo Festival 2006 is a lasting commitment to our youth, our communities and the indigenous culture and history in Australia. This is an opportunity to show all Australians the cultural importance and significance of the Willandra Lakes region. The three traditional Tribal Groups of the Willandra, the Paakantyi, Mutthi Mutthi and Ngiyampaa, will share the depth and richness of their culture in another step on Australia’s journey of culture sharing. The Festival seeks to r
each the following audiences: Indigenous communities both in the regional area and throughout Australia; the broader local communities, including schools and other educational facilities; tourism providers and other relevant businesses within that catchment; at a national level, people with an interest in Aboriginal culture, heritage areas, art, science, human origins; and at an international level, visitors interested in learning more about the traditional Aboriginal culture and the Australian environment. Highlights include the Opening Ceremony : An authentic indigenous experience featuring smoking ceremonies conducted by tribal elders, welcome dance by children from the three tribal groups, possum skin cloaks from opening ceremony of Commonwealth Games, music, performance and addresses by Festival patrons; Mungo Conversations : a series of public discussion events with a panel of speakers and facilitator, discussing topics with questions/input from audience; Field Trip to Mungo with Elders, Mulan people and archaeologists. Accompanying events are a Science Conference Legacy of an Ice Age ; Pastoralists’ Day with sheep shearing, with indigenous shearers, at Mungo Woolshed, with proposed pastoral history photo display, damper and storytelling; and a concert: Corroboree of the Drifting Sands , an outdoor concert featuring the best regional and national indigenous artists, Bush Tucker and a Yarn tent with talks on bush medicine, craft workshops and teaching language; and Palimpsest at Mango: artists have been invited to create art works (sculptures), which will be placed along the self-drive track at Mungo National Park. Inquiries : firstname.lastname@example.orgFurther information: www.mungofestival.com.au
Archaeology and Art on Tour
Andrew Cochrane of Cardiff University and Ian Russell of Trinity College Dublin would like to announce the opening of the tour of an artistic exhibition exploring contemporary archaeological theory. Titled Reflexive Representations: The Partibility of Archaeology the exhibition seeks to contest traditional mechanisms for representation and spectatorship by questioning the status that the document and pictorial image play in archaeological discourse. The exhibition will tour to: Cracow, Poland; September 19-24, 2006; Bristol, UK; November 10-12, 2006; Exeter, UK; December 15-17, 2006; Uppsala, Sweden; May 17-20, 2007; Kingston, Jamaica May 20-27, 2007. Further information: Ian Russell ( email@example.com) or Andrew Cochrane ( firstname.lastname@example.org) .
The e-volution of Information Technology in Cultural Heritage: Where Hi-Tech Touches the Past: Risks and Challenges for the 21st Century
Cyprus, October 30 – November 4, 2006
The focus is on interdisciplinary and multi-disciplinary research concerning both cutting edge Cultural Heritage Informatics and use of technology for the representation, documentation, archiving and communication of CH knowledge. The scope includes every phase of CH information technology: initial data capture/digitization, information/data processing, reconstruction, visualization and documentation as well as dissemination of results to the scientific and cultural heritage communities and to the general public. Place: Cyprus Date: October 30 – November 4, 2006 Further information: www.cipa2006.org
Cumberland Island National Seashore international workshop: Preserving the World’s Heritage Resources
November 2 – November 6, 2006
The study and preservation of archaeological and heritage sites around the world has never been more important than today, in the early 21st century as we seek to find ways to develop their educational and tourism potential without destroying them. The impact on the world’s heritage resources due to tourism and economic development can be nearly as disastrous as looting, armed conflict, natural disasters, and neglect, especially for developing nations. Also of concern is the relationship of politics to the interpretation and presentation of the past. All of these conditions make heritage resource management a global issue that cannot be adequately addressed by means of existing regional or national strategies and practices. Date: November 2 – 6, 2006 Further information: Dr. George S. Smith, RPA , Associate Director, Southeast Archaeological Center, Email: email@example.com
Chacmool 2006: November 11 – November 14, 2006
Decoding Implications of the Genographic Project for Archaeology
A panel discussion organized by George Nicholas (Simon Fraser University) and Julie Hollowell (University of British Columbia and Indiana University).
As illustrated by the recent controversy created by the National Geographic-sponsored Genographic Project and its predecessors, there is a need to better understand the broader ethical and practical implications of uses of ancient human genetic information. While technological advances are facilitating the kinds of information available to researchers, concerns about appropriation and the potential misuse or commodification of genetic material and the data extracted from it have been raised by a number of stakeholders. Aspects open to consideration are access to samples, permissions for research and analysis, ownership and dissemination of data, and consequences of archaeological or historical interpretation of results. This forum is an exploration and discussion of some of the salient issues involved from a variety of perspectives, rather than a debate. Through it, we hope to generate productive dialogue and delineate further questions about intellectual property, cultural identity, and research ethics. The panel will begin with short presentations by participants, followed by an extended period of moderated discussion. This session is sponsored by the World Archaeological Congress and by the Intellectual Property Issues and Cultural Heritage Project. Participants will be announced in the near future. Event: 39th Annual Chacmool Conference: Decolonizing Archaeology: Archaeology and the Post-Colonial Critique Date: November 11-14, 2006 Hosts: Chamool Archaeological Association and the Department of Archaeology Place: Rozsa Centre, University of Calgary. Further information: http://www.arky.ucalgary.ca/arky1/Chacmool2006/index.htm
CHAT 2006: Method and Practice in historical and contemporary archaeology
November 10 – November 12, 2006
The conference will comprise seven sessions (all plenary) exploring different aspects of archaeological method and practice:
Method and Materiality; Method and Politics; Archaeology, Oral History and Memory ; Method in Community Archaeology and Contemporary Archaeology; Hybrid Archaeologies: Archaeological Method and Artistic Practice; Method and Documents
and Method and Modernity . Keynote papers will be given by Professor Laurie Wilkie (Department of Anthropology, University of California at Berkeley) and Dr Gavin Lucas (Assistant Director of the Institute
of Archaeology in Reykjavik). Date: Friday 10 – Sunday 12 November 2006 Place: Bristol, UK Inquiries: Dan.Hicks@bris.ac.uk (Academic Programme) or Sam.Barlow@bris.ac.uk (Conference Administration). Further information: www.bris.ac.uk/archanth/events/chat2006.html
The Art of the Animal Symposium
November 27 – November 28, 2006
The Art of the Animal symposium explores the nature of art, humans and inter-species creativity over two days. Taking place on 27-28 November at the Seaworld Nara Resort ( www.seaworldnara.com.au ), on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia, it is the inaugural symposium of Griffith University’s The Human Question research program ( ). A key question explored through the symposium is how human creativity differs from or is similar to that of other creatures. Ultimately, the question of ‘what makes us human?’ will be debated. In this sense one objective is to raise awareness of animal consciousness and human relatedness to other creatures. We are all animals but human creativity has taken us on a different path from other creatures. Our current and future creative paths will also be explored and debated. More specifically, ten main themes will be addressed through the session papers, debates and performances: 1. The nature of animal creativity. 2. How and why human creativity took us on a different evolutionary path from that of other creatures. 3. The origins of art. 4. Different forms of human creativity. 5. Channelling creativity into practice and products. 6. New art-science-technology relationships. 7. Creativity and the body. 8. The recent phenomenon of people getting animals to paint. 9. Becoming more creative. 10. Creativity and the future. A cast of invited international and Australian speakers of broadly differing backgrounds will present over 20 papers organised into the following sessions of Animal Creativity; The Emergence of Human Creativity; Forms and Expressions of Human Creativity; And The Future of Creativity, the Human & the Animal. Organised by Paul S.C. Taçon (School of Arts, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia), participants include Marc Bekoff (University of Colorado, Boulder, USA), Alan Black (Athens, Georgia, USA), Michael Blumenstein (School of Information and Communication Technology, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia), Kevin Brophy (School of Creative Arts, University of Melbourne, Australia), Jean Clottes (Foix, France), Emma Collier-Baker (University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia), Ellen Dissanayake (University of Washington, Seattle, USA) , Temple Grandin (Colorado State University, Fort Collins, USA), Gisela Kaplan (Centre for Neuroscience and Animal Behaviour, University of New England, Armidale, Australia), Jondi Keane (School of Arts, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia), Nigel Krauth (School of Arts, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia), Marcia Langton (SAGES, University of Melbourne, Australia), Mandy Nolan (Byron Bay, Australia), Lisa Roet (Melbourne, Australia), Lesley Rogers (Zoology, University of New England, Armidale, Australia), Allan Snyder (Centre for the Mind, Sydney, Australia), Andi Spark (Griffith Film School, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia), Paul S.C. Taçon (School of Arts, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia), Alan Thorne (Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia), Gail Tulloch (Key Centre for Ethics, law, Justice and Governance, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia), Patrick West (School of Arts, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia), Paul Willis (ABC, Sydney, Australia), Peter Wise (School of Arts, Griffith University, Gold Coast, Australia) and Ionat Zurr (SymbioticA, University of Western Australia, Perth, Australia). For more details about the symposium see the Centre for Public Culture and Ideas Activities page on their website or follow the direct link to See also the Art of the Animal pages at www.eagleandowl.com, host of the online exhibition, and/or contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Telephone: +61 (0)7 373 57338 Fax: +61 (0)7 373 54132
5. General News Items
Good News and Bad for Historic Ships
The bad news first. The Times reported on 10 May 2006 that the world’s oldest surviving sea clipper, the City of Adelaide, launched in 1864 and later renamed The Carrick, is set to be dismantled after the Scottish Maritime Museum in Irvine, Ayrshire, has admitted that the hull is in far worse condition than previously thought. An application will now be made to the National Historic Ships Committee for recorded deconstruction of a ship that was the nineteenth-century equivalent of Concorde, offering the fastest and most luxurious way to emigrate to Australia (sixty-five days, a record that still stands). Meanwhile, in Birkenhead, the Warship Preservation Trust has gone into liquidation and has closed its museum. Until February, this hosted Europe’s largest collection of preserved warships, including HMS Plymouth and the submarine HMS Onyx from the Falklands War, the minehunter HMS Bronington, the German U-Boat U-534 and LCT 7074, the last surviving landing craft tank that took part in D-Day. The future of the collection is uncertain, though Plymouth City Council have expressed an interest in HMS Plymouth.
And the good news? Captain Cook’s Endeavour, the ship in which Cook claimed Australia for the British crown, has been found at the bottom of an American harbour, where she ended her days taking part in the British war effort against rebellious American colonists in Newport, Rhode Island. Renamed the Lord Sandwich and pressed into service during the successful defence of the town against the French in 1778, Endeavour was one of thirteen vessels scuttled in the harbour entrance to keep the French at bay. Archaeologist Dr Kathy Abbass, Director of the Rhode Island Marine Archaeology Project, said that six of the thirteen ships had now been identified some 300ft from the shoreline and about 20ft below the surface using a mixture of documentary research and sonar. Dr Abbass said the upper parts of the ships had rotted away but the keels had been preserved in the silt of the harbour. Excavation will begin so that the Endeavour can be identified and explored. And in Bristol, the long campaign to renovate the SS Great Britain, Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s great iron ship, has been recognised with two awards – for the best permanent exhibition and the best restoration/conservation project of the year – at the 2006 Museums and Heritage Awards.
New Distance Learning Course: African American Heritage and Ethnography (National Park Service’
s Ethnography Program)
A new distance learning course, African American Heritage and Ethnography , has been developed by the National Park Service’s Ethnography Program. The course is designed for cultural resource management professionals, historic preservationists, interpreters, anthropologists, archeologists, teachers, educators, and those who want to learn more about African American cultural heritage, ethnohistory, associated anthropological research, and heritage preservation. For information visit: http://www.cr.nps.gov/ethnography/aah/aaheritage/index.htm
Peruvian E-magazine on Archaeology : Arkeos
I am glad to introduce the second edition of Arkeos, Electronic Magazine of Archaeology, published by Graduate and Undergraduate students from Pontificia Universidad Catolica del Peru. ( www.pucp.edu.pe/publicaciones/arkeos/). Our magazine was conceived as a new space for discussion and share of information between archaeologists and the general public. Supported by our university, Arkeos aims to use the advantages of new technology for making Archaeology more active in our society. By using Internet, we try to create spaces for publishing at low cost, an important issue for developing countries like ours. As an interdisciplinary project, the design was conceived by engineers from our university working hand by hand with archaeologists. The contents are managed by a group of volunteers from our archaeology faculty. We also have a directory of specialists dedicated to peruvian archaeology, in order to create communication between archaeologists and public. We invite all of you to participate in this project providing us with contact and research information. Although the current issues are in Spanish, we plan to have an English version soon. Please feel free to make any inquiry to email@example.com. Best regards, Daniel D. Saucedo Segami , Publishing Committee Member, Arkeos, Electronic Magazine of Archaeology. Further information: www.pucp.edu.pe/publicaciones/arkeos/
Archaeological Dialogues is a space for debate in the fast-changing world of contemporary archaeology. International in scope, Archaeological Dialogues seeks to promote discussion of current topics and methodologies in the field. Recent Discussion Articles have included: Mapping for gender. Interpreting artefact distribution inside 1st- and 2nd-century A.D. forts in Roman Germany by Penelope Allison; Coins, money and exchange in the Roman world. A cultural-economic perspective by Joris Aarts ; Beasts, banknotes and the colour of money in colonial South Africa by Jean Comaroff and John L. Comaroff . A sample issue, including, the Joris Aarts article, is available online, offering a sense of this vibrant journal. Instructions for contributors are also available from the Archaeological Dialogues homepage along with a simple online library recommendation form. Further information: http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayJournal?jid=ARD (Note: please register to receive a sample issue).
Society for American Archaeology Presents 2006 Excellence in Public Education Award to Richard M. Pettigrew
Richard M. Pettigrew, Ph.D. has been selected by the Society for American Archaeology to receive their 2006 award for Excellence in Public Education . This award is conferred annually to recognize outstanding achievements by individuals or institutions in the sharing of archaeological knowledge and preservation issues with the public. Dr. Pettigrew is recognized for his leadership in using innovative media formats and new technologies to facilitate public education about archaeology. The Society for American Archaeology (SAA) is an international organization of more than 7000 members dedicated to the research, interpretation, and protection of the archaeological heritage of the Americas. The Society represents professional, student, and avocational archaeologists working in government agencies, colleges and universities, museums, and the private sector. In 1999, Dr. Pettigrew founded Archaeological Legacy Institute , an education and research non-profit organization through which he created The Archaeology Channel web site (TAC, http://www.archaeologychannel.org/) . This World Wide Web site makes available more than 70 archaeology-based streaming videos as well as audio interviews, commentaries, and weekly news programming to a diversified audience in a cost-effective format. With this effort, archaeological information is received from, and shared between, vast numbers of people in far reaching areas of the globe. Nearly 11,000 visitors to the site log on daily from more than 150 countries, with top visitation outside North America from western Europe, Australia, China, Japan, southeast Asia, and the Middle East. The Archaeology Channel is widely used in North America and beyond by school educators as well as college and university instructors. WindowsMedia.com, the leading streaming media guide created by Microsoft, features TAC videos daily on several of its pages, including a special archaeology content area populated mostly by TAC films. TAC also has a formal agreement to supply videos for the newly released Google Video search engine and to deliver audio content to cell phone users of the UpSNAP Mobile Broadcast Network. In 2003, Dr. Pettigrew established The Archaeology Channel International Film and Video Festival (http://www.archaeologychannel.org/content/TACfestival.shtml) , the first such festival in the Western Hemisphere, opening a new avenue for exposing new publics to archaeology. A thousand people attend the film screenings for film and video held annually at the McDonald Theater in Eugene, Oregon. showings have been staged in Vancouver, Washington; Portland, Oregon; and Eugene, Oregon; and annual ‘mini-festivals’ now are scheduled for six Oregon cities (Portland, Eugene, Ashland, Newport, Bend, and La Grande. Dr. Pettigrew has, in turn, been invited to serve as a juror for both the ICRONOS International Festival of Archaeological Film held annually in Bordeaux, France, and the CINARCHEA Festival for archaeology film and video held in Kiel, Germany. In utilizing new applications, tapping under-utilized resources, and for touching the generations that are archaeology’s future, the Society considers Richard M. Pettigrew a model of Excellence in Public Education.
Ur: A Video Essay on Tamil – Part 1
Friends and colleagues: India has a rich, complex and very ancient cultural tapestry that deserves better understanding and appreciation around the world. So it gives us great pleasure to exhibit an important part if India’s cultural past in Ur: A Video Essay on Tamil – Part 1, the latest video feature on our non-profit streaming-media Web site, The Archaeology Channel ( www.archaeologychannel.org). In south India is a culture with a continuous literary tradition more than 2000 years old. With 80 million spea
kers, Tamil is one of few languages besides Greek that is both classical and modern. This video essay outlines in images and music the development of the rich Tamil culture and writing systems. The origins of its earliest written script, found on cave walls, is a mystery. Some say it descends from the still undeciphered Indus script, used 4000 years ago in modern Pakistan and northwestern India, and that the Indus people spoke Dravidian, ancestral to Tamil. This and other programs are available on TAC for your use and enjoyment. We urge you to support this public service by participating in our Membership ( www.archaeologychannel.org/member) and Underwriting ( www.archaeologychannel.org/sponsor) programs. Only with your help can we continue and enhance our nonprofit public-education and visitor-supported programming. We also welcome new content partners as we reach out to the world community.
Native American Museum Studies Position (Department of Anthropology, Northern Arizona University)
Northern Arizona University’s Department of Anthropology invites applications for a full-time, one year, non-tenure-track instructor in Native American Museum Studies beginning August 21, 2006. Minimum requirements include experience teaching anthropology or related fields, experience in Native American Museum Studies, and ABD in Anthropology or Native American Studies (Ph.D. preferred). Preference will be given to candidates who can demonstrate effective teaching at the undergraduate (majors and non-majors) and graduate (MA) levels. The primary responsibility of this position is teaching museum studies and anthropology liberal studies courses; however, the successful candidate will also assist the department in developing a Native American Museum Studies emphasis, which includes the writing and submission of grant proposals. Grant writing expertise is therefore preferred. Preference also will be given to candidates with a demonstrated commitment to working effectively with diverse students, faculty, staff, and Native American communities and museums. Salary ranges from $37,000 to $40,000 depending on degree level. Application requirements include a curriculum vitae; transcripts; names of at least three references; evidence of teaching effectiveness; and a cover letter which describes the applicant’s interest and qualifications. The review of applications will begin July 10, 2006, and will continue until the position is filled. Please send applications to Dr. Andrea Hunter , Chair Native American Search Committee, Northern Arizona University, Department of Anthropology, P.O. Box 15200, Flagstaff, Arizona, 86011-5200. Northern Arizona University requires satisfactory results for the following: a criminal background investigation, an employment history verification and a degree verification (in some cases) prior to employment. You may also be required to complete a fingerprint background check. Northern Arizona University is a committed Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action institution. Minorities, women, persons with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply.
Commonwealth Scholarship in Zooarchaeology (University of York, UK )
The University of York has one scholarship for an eligible candidate to attend the MSc in Zooarchaeology in the academic year 2006/7. The candidate must (i) be a permanent resident of a Commonwealth developing country (ii) not presently living or studying in a developed country; (iii) have not undertaken studies lasting one year or more in a developed country; (iv) not now be employed by a National Government department or a parastatal organisation. Potential candidates must be willing to declare that neither they nor their family have sufficient funds to pay for study in the United Kingdom and that they will return to their country of permanent residence to seek employment or to work or study as soon as the proposed SSS award ends. Enquires please either to Professor Terry O’Connor : firstname.lastname@example.org or Matthew Collins : email@example.com or to the departmental postgraduate secretary Janine Lyon : firstname.lastname@example.org
Australian Archaeological Association Awards: Call for Nominations (4 Awards)
1. Rhys Jones Medal for Outstanding Contribution to Australian Archaeology
Nominations are called for the Rhys Jones Medal for Outstanding Contribution to Australian Archaeology. The Rhys Jones Medal is the highest award offered by the Australian Archaeological Association Inc. It was established in honour of Rhys Jones (1941-2001) to mark his enormous contribution to the development and promotion of archaeology in Australia. The Medal is presented annually to an individual who has made an outstanding and sustained contribution to the field. Established in 2002, previous winners include Isabel McBryde (2003), John Mulvaney (2004) and Sharon Sullivan (2005). Nominations should consist of a one page statement outlining the nominee’s archaeological career and how this work has benefited Australian archaeology. Note that nominees do not need to be members of the Association; be an Australian citizen; or work exclusively in Australia or on Australian material.
2. John Mulvaney Book Award
Nominations are called for the John Mulvaney Book Award. The Award was established in honour of John Mulvaney and his contribution and commitment to Australian archaeology over a lifetime of professional service. It was created to acknowledge the significant contribution of individual or co-authored publications to Australian archaeology, either as general knowledge or as specialist publications. Nominations are considered annually for books that effectively bridge the gap between academic pursuit and public interest reflecting the philosophy of John Mulvaney’s life work. Established in 2004, previous winners include Val Attenbrow for Sydney’s Aboriginal Past (2004). Nominations must be for books written by one or more authors, but not for edited books, published in the last 2 calendar years. The nomination must be accompanied by at least 2 published book reviews. A short citation (no more than one page) on why the book should be considered must also be included.
3. The Bruce Veitch Award for Excellence in Indigenous Engagement
Nominations are called for the Bruce Veitch Award for Excellence in Indigenous Engagement. The Award celebrates Bruce Veitch ‘s important contribution to the practice and ethics of archaeology in Australia. In particular, the award honours Bruce’s close collaboration with traditional owners on whose country he worked. It is awarded annually to any individual or group who has undertaken an archaeological or cultural heritage project which has produced a significant outcome for Indigenous interests. Applicants will have actively engaged with Indigenous communities to produce a successful outcome. The nature of nominations is flexible (e.g. video tape, audio tape, poster etc), considering the wide range of Indigenous collaborations and the remoteness of some communities.
4. Life Membership for Outstanding Contribution to the Australian Archaeological Association Inc.
Nominations are called for the Life Membership for Outstanding Contribution to the Australian Archaeological Assoc
iation Inc. This award was established to recognise significant and sustained contribution to the objects and purposes of the Australian Archaeological Association Inc. previous winners include John Mulvaney, Jack Golson, Betty Meehan (2002), Val Attenbrow (2002), J. Peter White (2003), Luke Kirkwood (2004) and Isabel McBryde (2005). Nominations should consist of a one page statement outlining the nominee’s contributions to the Australian Archaeological Association Inc. Note that nominees must be members of the Association.
All nominations for all Awards will be considered by the Executive of the Australian Archaeological Association Inc. with advice as appropriate from senior members of the discipline. The decision of the Executive is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Nominations should be received no later than 30 September 2006 addressed to the President: President, Australian Archaeological Association Inc. Archaeology, M405, University of Western Australia, 35 Stirling Highway, Crawley WA 6009. The recipients will be announced at the Australian Archaeological Association Inc. Annual Conference.
7. Excerpts from other archaeological newsletters (used with permission)
SALON – the Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter
Salon 142: 19 June 2006
SALON Editor: Christopher Catling
- Forthcoming meetings
- Ballot results: 15 June
- Queens Birthday Honours
- Collection for Nina
- Planning for Kelmscott
- Dream of the Virgin goes on display at the National Gallery
- Obituary: Tony Baggs
- Obituary: Leslie Alcock
- Roman remains at risk at Southwark site
- Stonehenge: what lies behind that unprecedented divide
- Solutions for Stonehenge: three letters published in the Guardian on 17 June 2006
- Capturing the Public Value of Heritage
- Our future lies with the creative industries, say arts leaders
- Michelangelo til midnight
- Heritage assets: can accounting do better?
- Our Portable Past
- New Coroners Bill
- Archaeological Archives: creation, preparation, transfer and curation
- Bamburghs word nearly ends up in skip
- Headless Romans in York: doubt cast on the Caracalla theory
- Export deferred of a George II Gothic painted cabinet
- Westminster Hall excavation reveals more pieces of a medieval royal table
- All Souls rejects Fellow’s legacy
- Globalcolonisation: chicken or egg
- Andean people look forward to the past
- Starbucks comes to eighteenth-century Maryland Inn
- Conferences and seminars
- Books by Fellows
- Burlington House refurbishment plans
22 June: A Miscellany of Papers and the Summer Soirée: Jean Wilson, FSA, will give a paper seasonally entitled Anyone for Tennis? and our General Secretary, David Gaimster, will talk about plans for the refurbishment of the Society’s premises at Burlington House.
Ballot results: 15 June
The Society is very pleased to welcome the following new Fellows who were all elected in the ballot held on 15 June 2006: Rica Jones, Susan Rankin, Philip Betancourt, Jan Wills, Roy Stephenson, Stephen Parry, Roger Smith, John Morcom, Claire Cross, Pamela Porter, Nigel Maslin, John Hughes, Ian Roberts, Philip Hewat-Jaboor, David Harrison, Paul Remley, Emma Carver, Victor Marchant, Nigel Pollard, Paul Dalton, Elizabeth New, Kate Taylor, Andrew Spicer, Jayne Semple and John Biggins.
Queen’s Birthday Honours
Our congratulations to our Fellows Barry Cuncliffe, CBE, Professor of European Archaeology, University of Oxford, who was created a Knight Batchelor for services to archaeology, and John Curtis, Keeper of the Department of the Ancient Near East at the British Museum, who was created an Officer of the British Empire for services to museums, in the 2006 Queen’s Birthday Honours List.
Collection for Nina
Nina de Groote, who has served as the Society’s Administrative Assistant for the last two years, is moving on in September to travel the world. Jayne Phenton < mailto:email@example.com> is organising a collection to help Nina on her global tour and would welcome donations from any Fellows who might like to contribute.
Planning for Kelmscott
Our Honorary Secretary, Alison Taylor, who is also Chair of the Kelmscott Management Committee, reports that a small planning sub-group met on 6 June 2006 to have a detailed look at all the buildings and facilities at Kelmscott and to think about how better use might be made of them in the future. Though rightly limited by the need to protect delicate furnishings and the much valued ancient peace of Kelmscott Manor from people-pressure, it was realized there was much we could do, both to build on Morris’s legacy and to expand understanding of the farm buildings and their Cotswold landscape setting. Relevant themes, we thought, might include vernacular architecture and related conservation skills, rural crafts, agricultural history, poetry and music, modern design, natural history (and its inspiration for arts and design), socialism, landscape archaeology, the history and architecture of the Cotswolds, gardening, and needlework all topics close to Morris’s heart and of great interest today. All Fellows (plus family and guests) are encouraged to come along to the Fellows, Day at Kelmscott on Saturday 8 July, to meet the property managers and the Society’s officers, to contribute ideas in an informal setting and to enjoy Summer Tea’ in the Society’s country home. Fellows are also reminded that they can visit without charge on Public Open Days (Wednesdays and 8 Saturdays during the season – see the Kelmscott website < http://www.kelmscottmanor.co.uk> for opening time details).
Jane Milne and Tristan Molloy, Property Managers at Kelmscott Manor, have also organised two summer concerts to raise funds for the Manor’s Inspiration for Learning education programme. The concerts will take place in the South Road Barn on 29 July at 7.30pm when the Hampden Ensemble (flute, oboe, cello, harpsichord and chamber organ) will present a varied programme of chamber music interspersed with humorous readings on matters musical; and on 19 August at 7.30pm when the Houkou Wind Quintet, comprising young musicians who came together as members of the National Youth Orchestra, perform a programme that they will repeat in October at the 2006 Mal
colm Arnold Festival in Northampton. Further details from the Property Managers < mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org> One final diary date: 23 September has been designated Book Day at Kelmscott Manor, when various books associated with William Morris will be brought out of the archive and displayed around the Manor.
Dream of the Virgin goes on display at the National Gallery
The Society’s Administrator, Jayne Phenton, reports that the Society is lending its fourteenth-century painting, The Dream of the Virgin , by Bolognese master Simone di Crocefissi, to the National Gallery for a period of three years. The painting once formed part of an altarpiece, but a Fellow of the Society who was attracted to the picture hanging in his bedroom wall in a railway hotel room in Bologna bought it from the hotel proprietor and donated it to the Society’s collection in 1938. Since then, it has remained largely unseen by the public, apart from a brief display at the Royal Society of Chemistry, which highlighted the chemical aspects of recent conservation work. Carried out by conservators at the Courtauld Institute, this work revealed that a conventional Crucifixion scene and layers of regilding and over painting disguised an earlier and much rarer iconography showing Christ crucified on a golden Tree of Life, rising from the Virgin’s womb. The painting fills a gap in the National Gallery’s collection, as it has very few works by early Bolognese artists. David Gaimster, the Society’s General Secretary, said: We are delighted that the loan of one of our Renaissance masterpieces will enhance the National Gallery’s display in the Sainsbury Wing and can be viewed and enjoyed by a wider public.
Obituary: Tony Baggs
The following edited highlights are from the obituary for Tony Baggs published in The Times on 10 June 2006.
Tony Baggs, who died on 31 May 2006, at the age of seventy-two, was the architectural editor of the Victoria County Histories (VCH) for twenty-seven years. As President of the Royal Archaeological Institute (1992), and chairman of the Society of Architectural Historians of Great Britain, he was one of the country’s most respected building archaeologists. On his retirement from the VCH he became consulting archaeologist to the Diocese of Ely and was on the Fabric Committee of Peterborough Cathedral. In 1992 he became principal investigator for the Cambridge Historic Buildings Group, which he founded with Nicholas Ray in the Department of Architecture at the University of Cambridge. During his career he published numerous papers on building archaeology and architectural history. Anthony Paget Baggs – always known simply as Tony – was born in Norwich in 1934, and was a lifelong bibliophile, spending much of his school holidays in and around bookshops and his other obsession, historic churches. He went to school in Stamford, where he was taught art by the cartoonist Gerard Hoffnung, then to Peterhouse, Cambridge, in 1953 to read archaeology. On leaving Cambridge he did military service in Malaya, where he spent two years commanding a field survey troop, mapping the uncharted Malayan jungle. On his return to England he secured a position in the Norwich Museums Service as Keeper of the History of Technology. He later remembered it involved looking after a sizeable bicycle collection. From Norwich he moved to Cambridge in 1963 to work for the Royal Commission on the Historical Monuments of England as a principal investigator, contributing to the volumes on West Cambridgeshire, North East Cambridgeshire and Stamford, as a result of which he was elected a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries in 1965. In 1968 he published a much-cited article on sixteenth-century East-Anglian terracotta in the Archaeological Journal . His career break came with his appointment as architectural editor of the Victoria County Histories in 1971. Over the next twenty-seven years he travelled the country, visiting every building of interest in the areas under study. It was the perfect job for a man of his talents and one he approached with energy and relish, producing characteristically succinct entries for fifty-five volumes. Through careful reading, archival research and first-hand experience he acquired an encyclopaedic knowledge of architectural history. Always active and practical, he was never happier than when he was up scaffolding examining a piece of stonework or in his workshop mending a sash window. He was a quiet, unassuming and quintessentially modest man. In later years his position in the architecture department brought him into contact with students who were universally fond of him. PS: Our Honorary Secretary, Alison Taylor, who attended Tony’s funeral on 15 June on behalf of the Society, adds that: As well as being President of the Cambridge Antiquarian Society in 1975, and serving as a Council member on frequent occasions, Tony was a constant source of advice and refereeing support for the Editor (me) for everything concerning historic buildings. A huge number of Fellows turned out for his funeral in Cambridge last Thursday, former colleagues from the RCHME and VCH, local EH staff and masses of local archaeological and buildings interests were represented.
Obituary: Leslie Alcock
Though not a Fellow at the time of his death (he resigned some years ago, having been elected in 1957 and having served on Council in 1964Ñü6), Leslie Alcock’s research has had a major impact on the work of many Fellows: indeed, volume 86 of the Antiquaries Journal , to be published later this year, will include a paper by Dai Morgan Evans, our former General Secretary, on Leslie Alcock’s work at Cadbury Castle, Somerset. The following edited extracts are taken from the obituary published on 15 June 2006 in the Daily Telegraph . Professor Leslie Alcock, who died on 6 June 2006, aged eighty-one, was a pioneer of Dark Age, archaeology and led the team which excavated Cadbury Castle in Somerset, the best known and most interesting of the reputed sites of King Arthur’s Camelot. At the time he was excavating Cadbury, Alcock inclined to believe that Arthur was a historical figure, a view reflected in his Arthur’s Britain , a lively and scholarly account of the available historical and archaeological evidence, published in 1971 and reprinted several times. In later life, though, he distanced himself from the book, having become convinced by historians that there was no good evidence that Arthur ever existed. Leslie Alcock was born in Manchester and won scholarships to Manchester Grammar School and Brasenose College, Oxford, where he read History and became president of the Oxford Archaeology Society. During the Second World War he served as a captain with the Gurkhas in India, becoming fluent in a variety of Indian languages. Graduating after the war, he returned to the subcontinent to assist Sir Mortimer Wheeler in the excavation of a Bronze Age site at Mojendo-Daro in the Indus valley. In 1950 he was appointed superintendent of exploration at the Department of Archaeology by the new government of Pakistan. Returning to Britain, Alcock worked for a year as assistant curator at the Abbey House Museum in Leeds before being appointed to an assistant lectureship at University College, Cardiff, in 1953. He was made Professor of Archaeology in 1973, but subsequently moved to Scotland to take up a personal chair at Glasgow University. Alcock made his name in the early 1950s as director of excavations at Dinas Powys, near Cardiff, a hillfort site containing evidence of wooden structures and a large quantity of high-status metalwork, jewellery, glass and imported pottery dating from between the fifth and seventh centuries AD. This excavation, published in 1963, demonstrated that the period traditionally described as the Dark Ages, could be made accessible and elucidated through archaeology. Though the supposed connection with Arthur
remained the focus of public interest at South Cadbury, attracting thousands of visitors to the site, Alcock saw the site as a microcosm of 1,200 years of British Celtic history, containing, among other things, one of the largest and most complete ceramic sequences for the period from the late Bronze Age to the Iron Age in the country, a vital resource for academic research. In Scotland, Alcock was instrumental in establishing Glasgow University as a leading centre for the study of archaeology; many of his students went on to occupy important positions in academia and on archaeological and heritage bodies. He continued to pursue a vigorous programme of fieldwork, concentrating on sites mentioned in Dark Age, manuscripts, the most significant being Dumbarton Rock, the chief fort of the kingdom of Strathclyde from the sixth century to 870. He distilled the results of this work in Kings and Warriors, Craftsmen and Priests in Northern Britain AD 550Ñü850 , published in 2002. Alcock served on various public and advisory bodies. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society in 1969 and appointed OBE in 1991. A brilliant speaker and writer, Alcock relished the cut and thrust of debate, though he could be prickly and demanding on occasion.
The story about the mortal remains of Christopher Columbus (which crossed the Atlantic almost as many times as Columbus himself did while alive) attracted much interest and elicited a number of other bone-related stories from Fellows. John Nandris draws attention to the fact that the municipal museum in Genova has, beside the glass case containing Nicolo Paganini’s magnificent Guarneri violin, what is advertised as Christopher Columbus’ thumb. Ian speculates whether DNA from that digit might help pin down where Columbus came from. Many people still refer to him as Genoese, as he did himself in his will of 22 February 1498 ( yo nacio en Genoba ‘), but contemporaries describe him as being red-haired and six feet tall, and there are as many competing theories about his birthplace as there are versions of who wrote Shakespeare’s plays: Columbus has been claimed as Basque, Catalan, Portuguese, a converted Spanish Jew, Corsican or Greek (Corsica and Chios were both under Genoese control at the time and many inhabitant of the village of Pirgi in the island of Chios have the surname Colombus’).
Robert Merrillees reports another example of peripatetic bones: this time, the remains of Jean sans Peur, Duke of Burgundy, who died in 1419, and his wife, Marguerite de Bavière, which, Robert writes: have recently been rediscovered in the Nicholson Museum < http://www.usyd.edu.au/nicholson/> , University of Sydney, by the energetic new Senior Curator, Michael Turner. Their presence in Sydney bears witness not to an early attempt by the French to lay claim to Australia before Captain Cook but to the desire of enlightened free settlers like Sir Charles Nicholson, after whom the museum is named, to promote intellectual and cultural standards in the colony of New South Wales in the mid-nineteenth century when the university was established in Sydney, with Nicholson himself as one of its founders and its first Chancellor. Just how bits and pieces of Jean sans Peur and his spouse found their way to Sydney is not well documented but they were evidently acquired by Nicholson himself, after a study had been made of the bones by the Commission des Antiquités de la Côte d’Or in 1841 in the cathedral of Saint-Bénigne in Dijon. Before their re-interment it would seem that a number of them were “souvenired”, mounted on a tableau, and subsequently sold. Jean sans Peur, it will be recalled, did nothing to impede and may even have abetted Henry V’s invasion of French territory and took no part in the Battle of Agincourt in 1415, though two of his brothers fought on the French king’s side and were killed. Jean himself was assassinated at the Dauphin’s instigation at Montereau and originally interred in the Chartreuse at Champmol. His relics are currently on show in the Nicholson Museum in an exhibition entitled Unearthed Tales 2: a fascination with death , which includes part of Jean’s cilice,: not the instrument of self-mortification which, thanks to Dan Brown, we know is used by the members of Opus Dei, but Jean’s hair-shirt, Ñü or rather the garment in which he was buried. The museum also has a Flemish reliquary chest, also on display, of the seventh-century St Eloi, but with nothing inside. Still to be resurrected in the museum are a substantial collection of mediaeval English seals and documents, archaeological material excavated in London and found in the Thames in the mid-nineteenth century, and various plaster casts made around the same time, including a Danish Runic Stone found in London in August, 1852, a model of the Saxon Font in the Cathedral Church of Winchester and a piece of Sculpture in Stone in the Choir of Ely Cathedral. Finally, last week’s news that a new archaeological recruitment agency had been set up to provide competitive rates of pay and promote archaeology as a profession to be proud of, brought a swift response from readers who looked at the Archpeople Recruitment Agency website and concluded that their rates fell below the minima used by the BAJR website < http://www.bajr.org> and the IFA jobs information service, adding that pay levels in general for archaeologists are a long way from being anything for the profession to be proud of.
Roman remains at risk at Southwark site
Our Fellow Maev Kennedy reported in the Guardian on 31 May the fears of archaeologists that important Roman remains would be destroyed at the church of St George the Martyr, in Southwark, because time and money had run out to continue with their excavation. Archaeologists from the Museum of London Archaeology Service were reported to be working against the clock to finish excavating the site, ahead of pile-driving and underpinning work, which will destroy anything in the archaeological layer that has not already been salvaged or recorded. Our Fellow Harvey Sheldon, Chair of Rescue, and an officer of the London and Middlesex Archaeological Society (LAMAS), called the situation disgrace. Dr Sheldon has directed many excavations in Southwark, including the Rose theatre site, and believes the losses will include major Roman buildings fronting on to Watling Street, one of the most important Roman roads whose precise route through the area has never been traced. I have seen substantial brick foundations clearly Roman from the quantities of Roman pottery coming out of the trenches. Levelling the site means that a metre of history is going to be scoured off the site and lost forever, he said. Dr Sheldon said that even with archaeology apparently catered for things can go badly wrong, and that the excavation raised a number of critical issues about the way that developers (in this case a church engaged in a lottery-funded project) could dictate what happened to archaeological remains, in contravention of the spirit of PPG16. Dr Sheldon said he had no criticism of the MoLAS team’s actual work; progress was slowed by the discovery of hundreds more buried human remains than had been expected. It also seems that there was a delay in providing archaeological access to much of the crypt area in the weeks before the dig was due to end. When Salon contacted Dr Sheldon to ask whether the situation had been resolved, he replied that the best the developer could offer archaeologists was the chance to record any remaining sections after the crypt floor had been lowered by up to a metre, adding that this is hardly adequate treatment for a Roman building sequence, nor for cut-features which might include earlier phases of the church. English Heritage had also given an emergency grant for extra diggers over the final w
eekend to recover medieval terracotta fragments judged of national importance which were also uncovered in the excavation. The Reverend Maggie Durran, the development consultant for St George’s, maintained that level-reduction, under-pinning and piling work would not damage in situ remains, and said: We are very keen on our archaeology, and we have done the very best we can by this site, but we have an absolute deadline of this week. Archaeologists have to understand that if their budget is spreading, everyone else’s is shrinking. Dr Sheldon said that LAMAS intended to maintain pressure to ensure the mistakes at St George’s were not repeated.
Stonehenge: what lies behind that unprecedented divide
Readers of British Archaeology magazine were told this week that a rift has recently opened up in the English archaeological community. Under the headline, Unprecedented divide over Stonehenge , the magazine reveals in its latest issue (July/August 2006) that the meeting hosted by the Society of Antiquaries on 31 March this year to consider the options for resolving traffic problems in the Stonehenge area was exceptionally heated. The cause of the heat, Salon can perhaps now report, was a press release issued by a group of conservation bodies, including the National Trust, the CBA, Friends of the Earth, CPRE, RESCUE and Transport 2000, opposing all five of the Highways Agency’s proposals for the A303. The release caused anger for several reasons: some interpreted the timing of the press release as a deliberate attempt to pre-empt the outcome of the Antiquaries meeting, which had been convened in a spirit of open-mindedness, to hear all sides in the debate; others objected to the wording of the press release, which gave the impression that the whole archaeological community was opposed to the Highways Agency’s proposals; others were concerned that none of the organisations associated with press release had consulted their trustees or members before signing up to it, and some members of the Prehistoric Society’s Council were particularly unhappy at seeing their name attached to the statement. Further frustration was then engendered at the meeting by the refusal of any of the ten signatory organisations to offer alternative routes for debate: as our Fellow Sir Neil Cossons said repeatedly at the meeting: we know what you oppose; we don’t know what you propose. In their defence, the ten signatories said their position was consistent, and that they had said nothing in the press release that they had not already said at public inquiry and in previous statements to the press. Indeed, ahead of the expected announcement from the Highways Agency of the results of its consultation (scheduled for later this month) the National Trust again convened a press conference last week at which it wheeled out its big guns William Proby (Chairman), Fiona Reynolds (Director General) and Sarah Staniforth, Historic Properties Director to reiterate the Trust’s opposition to any existing proposal. At the press conference, the National Trust warned that Stonehenge and its ceremonial landscape are now under imminent threat of being ruined in perpetuity by the wrong solution. If the Guardian is to be believed, Sarah Staniforth then went further and said that Stonehenge risked being stripped of its status as a world heritage site because of second-rate government proposals to ease traffic congestion at the monument’. In fact, far from disapproving, the UK National Commission for Unesco has declared itself in favour of the short-bored tunnel and one reason why the Officers and Fellows of the Society of Antiquaries feel able to support the short-bored tunnel scheme is that it fulfils World Heritage Site aspirations for protecting archaeological remains while improving their setting and accessibility. Leaving aside the hyperbole of the press conference, what also seems to be at issue here is a philosophical divide between those conservationists who see people as one of the critical factors in the debate, and those who are almost exclusively focused on the monument itself. Those organisations that have come down in support of the short-bored tunnel option for Stonehenge argue that people matter very much in the argument: the people who live along the A303 route (principally in Winterbourne Stoke) who deserve to be relieved from traffic noise and pollution; the people who are involved in accidents every year at the dangerous A303/A344 junction; the people whose journeys along the A303 are inconvenienced by the traffic jams; and the millions of people whose visits to Stonehenge falls short of the life-changing experience that it might be because of the poverty of the setting and the interpretation facilities. Building a tunnel along the line of the existing road, they argue, harms only that part of the World Heritage Site that has already been messed up archaeologically, and offers manifold people, benefits, and whilst everyone would love a longer tunnel, they reluctantly accept that the additional benefits do not justify a doubling of the cost. By contrast, the National Trust’s position privileges, the World Heritage Site designation over other factors in the equation. The National Trust believes that the World Heritage Site designation is paramount and that no expense should be spared in removing modern intrusions in all forms from within the boundaries of the WHS. This admirable position is somewhat stymied by the failure of the Trust and its supporters to find an unproblematic route that achieves this goal. The Trust has identified a corridor, within which a new route might be found, but any road put through this corridor would involve relocating Larkhill army training camp and would cut through a landscape richer in bio-diversity and archaeological monuments than the area around the present A303.Very late in the day, the National Trust seems to being waking up to the fact that its corridor, might not be the answer. A press statement just posted on its website indicates that the Trust would now be prepared to support a bored tunnel at least 2.9km long’ Writing in the Daily Telegraph on 17 June 2006, Adam Nicholson, a journalist who often writes in support of National Trust policies (but who on this occasion seems confused by what exactly is being proposed or at what cost, and doesn’t seem to know the difference between miles and kilometres) suggests that a 2.8 mile tunnel, would be acceptable. Whether 2.9km or 2.8 miles in length, neither option is currently on the table and to demand either ignores the fact that the Government has already ruled out a longer tunnel after a lengthy public inquiry to look into the costs and benefits. What worries supporters of the short-bored tunnel option is that the Government could seize on the unprecedented divide’ amongst heritage professionals and decide to delay making any kind of a decision, whilst blaming archaeologists for the continued failure to resolve the Stonehenge traffic problem. That will do no good for the image of archaeology, and nor will it help the people whose lives are currently blighted by the existing A303, even if it does mean a kind of victory for the National Trust and the CBA.
Solutions for Stonehenge: three letters published in the Guardian on 17 June 2006
Sir: The National Trust suggestion that doing nothing is better than upgrading the A303 through a 2.1km tunnel next to Stonehenge is irresponsible in two ways. First, this stretch of the A303 must be upgraded in a way that is affordable and reduces its impact upon the setting of the monument and the heritage of the landscape; the tunnel achieves this aim. Second, this option, along with the resited visitor centre, will vastly enhance the understanding a visitor can gain of one of the greatest achievements of our prehistory. Perhaps the National Trust might consider its priorities to those who suffer the current chaos of visiting Stonehenge. I doubt that the future visitors who will be able to grasp the sheer drama of the Stonehenge landscap
e will regard the current proposal as “second rate”. Professor John C Barrett, FSA, Department of Archaeology, University of Sheffield
Sir: The National Trust, like many of us, would like the government to commit to a long-term solution to the roads at Stonehenge. In March this year I attended a meeting at the Society of Antiquaries of London, as did trust representatives, at which the issues were debated. Chris Jones of the Highways Agency said it was fanciful or disingenuous to suggest there were achievable road alternatives that had not been considered. The Trust will draw much sympathy in wishing a perfect outcome for Stonehenge, but we have to choose between ideal and solution. We get the latter, and as close as we can come to the former, in the favoured tunnel.
Mike Pitts, FSA, Marlborough, Wilts
Sir: The bottleneck on the A303 at Stonehenge could be solved by a bored tunnel to take the roads away from the heritage site. This decision was welcomed by Unesco’s world heritage committee in 2003 (Road plans put Stonehenge status at risk, June 14). After a decade of analysis and debate, this route was agreed by a public inquiry, and it seemed as though action would finally be taken to restore the stones to the isolated setting which they deserve, and to deliver the much-needed transport improvements vital to the economy of the south-west region. Only one solution meets the needs of the environment, the need for swift and safe road transport to the south-west and the needs of this internationally significant heritage site. None of the alternative schemes put forward in the review could begin within the decade. The government should authorise the Highways Agency to proceed without further delay with the construction of the published tunnel scheme for the A303 at Stone henge.
Edmund King, Executive Director, RAC Foundation
Capturing the Public Value of Heritage
English Heritage has just published the proceedings of the conference called Capturing the Public Value of Heritage , which was held in London on 25 and 26 January 2006, jointly hosted by the Heritage Lottery Fund, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, English Heritage and the National Trust (copies available from E H Sales < mailto:email@example.com> , product code 51216, price £10 plus p&p). This is a fascinating and important work, likely to be cited as a landmark publication in future studies of heritage management, simply because it brings together so many different perspectives on the meaning of the words public, value and heritage. Whether the conference succeeded in joining those three words up to form a concept that everyone can share as a basis for future heritage policy is a different matter. Brave attempts were made to do so, but those whose speeches to the conference made most sense all seemed to be addressing the one influential organisation that was absent from the conference: HM Treasury. Their papers read like prayers offered to an invisible deity, hoping to persuade the absent Chancellor and his army of civil servants and advisers that measuring public value should be more than an accountancy exercise. Sadly, such an enterprise seems doomed to failure. No matter how hard any heritage professional works to try and redefine public value (so that its meaning becomes what the public values), the term is essentially an economic one, to do with the taming of public expenditure, bearing down on costs and ensuring that the performance of the public sector matches that of the private sector (and contracting out public services to the private sector if that is the only way of reducing costs). It is the concept that underlies the current reform, of the national health service, for example, and it has very little to do with what the public values, because if it did, there would be small hospitals with dedicated staff providing responsive services round the clock in every community (as there are in Portugal, for example). Whether or not the Government is really committed to the public’s view of the heritage will be revealed when the White Paper on the reform of the heritage protection system is published later this year (originally scheduled for July, but now more likely to emerge in the autumn). The conference papers provided plenty of evidence that when members of the public are given the opportunity to express a view, they say they want stronger protection for a wider range of heritage. But that is costly and obstructive to the Government’s development goals, so it is branded as NIMBYism or backward-looking heritage (don’t laugh). Salon’s editor predicts that the White Paper will argue that public value, lies in stronger designation, but for fewer assets, cutting out the marginal, the contested, the inconvenient and the relatively commonplace, leaving only those assets that are least under threat and about which there is an overwhelming consensus, and lo and behold, that will also be achieved at a reduced cost to the state.
Our future lies with the creative industries, say arts leaders
Leaders of Britain’s theatres, museums, art galleries, libraries and archives are also hoping to influence the Chancellor by means of a manifesto, launched on 8 June, designed to convince the Government of the central economic role played by museums, heritage and the arts. Called Values and Vision: the contribution of culture < http://www.nationalmuseums.org.uk/values_and_vision.html> , the manifesto says: We want to put culture at the centre of government thinking and, more importantly, at the centre of our national life. It documents the many successes of the arts and heritage sector in recent years and calls on Government to provide the funding needed to sustain this good work to cope with the growing public appetite for the arts, museums, libraries and archives.
Tony Hall, executive director of the Royal Opera House, said the creative economy was growing at 8 per cent a year Ñü much faster than the rest of the economy, and in the south east it rivalled financial services in scale: the future is in the creative industries because it’s something we’re good at’ he said. He added that museums, libraries and concert halls are vast deposits of knowledge and the raw material for future success: they’re not some add-on but absolutely vital to the future of the creative economy on which our future will undoubtedly depend, Among statistics published in the manifesto is evidence from the Government’s own surveys that more than twice as many people in Britain have visited a museum or gallery in the past year than in Italy. Nearly half the population has used a public library and seven out of the top ten UK visitor attractions are publicly funded museums or galleries. Attendances are at their highest for a decade, with two-thirds of the population attending at least one event in the past year.
Michelangelo til midnight
Further evidence of the public’s appetite for culture came in the announcement last week that the British Museum would open its doors until midnight for the first time to meet the unprecedented demand for its Michelangelo exhibition. More than 140,000 people have visited Michelangelo Drawings: closer to the master , since it opened at the end of March. Now the only way the museum can cater for the demand is by staying open until midnight every Saturday until the show closes on 25 June. The exhibition brings together material from the dispersal of Michelangelo’s studio in 1564.
Heritage assets: can accounting do better?
John Carman, Senior Lecturer in Heritage Valuation at the Birmingham University Institute of Archaeology and Antiquity, would not be happy with Salon ‘s use of the word assets to describe heritage entities. In a letter to the A
ccounting Standards Board (ASB), he objects to the designation of any heritage object as an asset on the grounds that in many cases it is not: it is an object that needs to be conserved and looked after, attracting costs but not any kind of return.
John’s letter was written in response to the consultation paper published by the ASB in January 2006, asking for responses to its proposal for an accounting standard that will require museums and galleries to report balance sheet values for all the heritage assets they own. John goes on to say that he objects in principle to the whole exercise, on the grounds that heritage objects held by public institutions exist outside and beyond the realm of the everyday and the economic: they are in fact the antithesis of economic assets because as heritage they belong to everyone and the institutions which hold them do so only as trustees with no direct interest themselves,
The Society of Antiquaries is also amongst those who have responded to the proposal with a degree of concern, saying that the valuation of heritage assets might give the impression that the museum or charity whose task is to conserve and protect those assets is wealthier than it is. Worse still, valuation might lead to pressure on trustees to dispose of assets. The Society’s response also argues that annual valuations will involve an undue cost in valuing and reporting those assets, will lead to large annual fluctuations in the balance sheet and ultimately add nothing to the user’s understanding of the reporting entity. The Society of Museum Archaeologists (SMA) makes similar points in its response, saying that this proposal is based on a premise that is unacceptable to the Society Ñü that it is in the public interest to put a financial value on our shared archaeological heritage. As archaeologists we believe that a collection’s or individual artefact’s value lies in the information that it contains which illuminates various aspects of past human society. This information value has no connection to any financial value that the collection or artefact might have. Indeed, the financial value of a collection or artefact is irrelevant since there is a presumption established over many years that museums do not sell artefacts or collections. The SMA statement goes on to ask where museums are to find new resources to pay the consultants who will be required to undertake an annual valuation, and it points out that the Treasure Valuation Committee established under the 1996 Treasure Act has found that there is a severe shortage of professional valuers with both knowledge and credibility to undertake the valuing of archaeological objects. It has emerged, however, that not everyone within the museums community is opposed to the Accounting Standards Board’s proposals: apparently both the National Museums Directors’ Conference and the Museums Association are broadly in favour of what they see as an exercise in introducing consistency into a field where various different practices prevail at present. Whatever the outcome, one strongly suspects that accountants will be the winners.
Our Portable Past
English Heritage has published a list of conditions under which it will give permission for metal-detecting work on land that it owns, or on projects that it funds. The conditions state that consent for metal-detector use will only be given where metal artefacts are threatened with destruction and no alternative for securing in situ preservation can be achieved. They also say that metal-detecting work must only take place within the context of properly formulated research-based fieldwork, integrated with desk-based archaeological assessment as well as other fieldwork techniques and structured retrieval of non-metal artefacts. It wants appropriate standards of finds location to be adopted and for finds to be reported and published to agreed standards before being deposited in an accredited museum (subject to landowners agreement). This policy, says EH, was formulated amid increasing concern for the serious negative impacts that can result from the unstructured collection and recording of material’EH has also called on other organisations, landowners and individuals who are asked to give consent to metal detecting or any form of archaeological activity on their land to insist on the same conditions. The advice is contained in Our Portable Past , launched on 14 June, which states that English Heritage will now only support or recommend permission for metal-detector work that is part of a project that integrates metal-detector survey with other archaeological techniques. Project designs should contain appropriate strategies for recording and mapping artefacts where they are found, and the recovery of finds should be based on the principle that as much as possible should be preserved in situ . In launching the policy, our Fellow Adrian Olivier, Strategy Director of English Heritage, said: Inappropriate [metal-detector] use can cause irreversible harm. We hope that our policy will give the transparency that is needed in this area and also has the wider effect of encouraging good practice across the board. Our Portable Past can be downloaded from the English Heritage website < Our-Portable-Past.pdf> .
New Coroners Bill
Last week, the Department for Constitutional Affairs published its draft Coroners Bill < http://www.dca.gov.uk/legist/coronersreform.htm> ), which the media hailed as the overhaul of a set of laws that have not changed since the Middle Ages. According to our Fellow Roger Bland, Head of the Portable Antiquities Scheme, it contains far-reaching changes to the Treasure Act, all of them I think positive: a single coroner for Treasure, and assistant Treasure coroners; a new Chief Coroner to whom appeals can be made; a new duty for anyone who comes into possession of an object which they believe to be Treasure (eg a dealer) to report it; a new duty for finders not just to report Treasure but also to hand it in. The bill is no more than a draft at present: it is likely to be presented to Parliament in the next session, starting in November 2006. If passed, the new Coroners Act will come into effect late in 2008 or early in 2009.
Archaeological Archives: creation, preparation, transfer and curation
The Institute for Field Archaeologists is seeking feedback on a draft best-practice guidance document on archaeological archives. Copies of the document can be downloaded from the IFA website < > and comments should be sent to the author, Duncan Brown < mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org> , Chair of the IFA Finds Group, by Monday 17 July 2006.
The best-practice guidance has been drawn up by the IFA in response to the Review of Standards in England for the Creation, Preparation and Deposition of Archaeological Archives’ (2004) commissioned by the Archaeological Archives Forum (AAF). This revealed major inconsistencies in the ways various types of archaeological practitioner planning archaeologists, contracting units, specialists and museum curators perceived their role within the archaeological archiving process. The new draft hopes to resolve this by explaining best-practice procedures for all stages of the archive process, and showing how they are relevant to all areas of the archaeological profession. The guidance looks at the documentary archive (written material, drawings, photographs an
d digital material) and at the curation of the material archive (including human remains and scientific samples), and it gives guidance on the laws relating to copyright, title and ownership in England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.
Bamburgh sword nearly ends up in skip
The importance of proper archiving procedures was illustrated by a story in the Daily Telegraph on 19 June , which reported that the seventh century pattern-welded Bamburgh Sword narrowly avoided being dumped in a skip by workers who were clearing the house of our late Fellow Brian Hope-Taylor. The sword was rescued by former students who had gone to the house after hearing that Hope-Taylor’s books were being sold off. They found the sword in a suitcase that was about to be loaded into a skip. The sword was originally found in the first ever excavation at Bamburgh Castle, Northumberland, in 1960 and is now back there on display. Paul Gething, from the Bamburgh Research Project, said: We had no idea it would be such an exceptional sword and the only one of its kind ever found. It is a dream come true.
Headless Romans in York: doubt cast on the Caracalla theory
Fellows might have seen a BBC TV Timewatch’ programme last month in which archaeologists working in York revealed the discovery by our Fellow Patrick Ottaway and his team of thirty decapitated Roman skeletons in the rear garden of a house in York. The programme explored different theories to explain why their heads had been removed and placed between their knees, on their chests or by their feet. Our Fellow Anthony Birley came up with the plausible explanation that these people were murdered by the bloodthirsty Emperor Caracalla because they were supporters of Geta, his younger brother, rival and co-emperor. This explanation was based on the large amount of early third-century pottery recovered from the site of the burials (Caracalla came to the throne in AD 211). Now, according to Kurt Hunter-Mann, writing in Yorkshire: Archaeology Today , the magazine of the York Archaeological Trust, further decapitated burials have been found in neighbouring back gardens that indicate a date range for these burials stretching from the late second century and on in to the later third or even early fourth centuries. During almost a century of deposition, new graves have intercut older ones. Some of the later graves include multiple burials (four people to a grave) or burials in which the remains of up to four horses were buried with the human remains in large wooden boxes. The final phase is characterised by individual burials clustered around the earlier burials with horse bones. Nobody is rushing into an explanation for what can clearly no longer be considered a single event. All Kurt Hunter-Mann will say is that the decapitation rite is even more difficult to interpret than was first thought; gladiatorial combat is the latest theory to be proposed’ For pictures and further information on the finds, go to the YAT website < > .
Export deferred of a George II Gothic painted cabinet
A temporary export bar has been placed on a George II Gothic painted cabinet from Easton Neston, Northamptonshire. The Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest, run by the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council, has awarded a starred rating to the cabinet, meaning that every possible effort should be made to raise enough money to keep it in the country. The cabinet encapsulates the taste of the mid-eighteenth-century Gothic revivalists and appears to be contemporary with – or even to pre-date – Horace Walpole’s earliest activities at Strawberry Hill. The recent recovery of its original paint surface places it at the very beginning of the fashion for painted furniture that became more widespread in the 1770s and 1780s, and of a more enduring tradition of painted decoration for furniture in the Gothic style. The cabinet was made for Henrietta, wife of the first earl of Pomfret, who was one of the principal Gothic enthusiasts of the eighteenth century, possibly by the cabinet-maker William Hallett: Lady Pomfret’s diary records a visit to Hallett on 6 April 1752 and Hallett was later employed by Horace Walpole to supply the ebonized Gothic chairs for his parlour at Strawberry Hill. Provisionally the export bar runs out on 5 August, but may be extended until 5 December if a serious intention to raise funds with a view to making an offer to purchase the cabinet at the recommended price of £1,200,000 (excluding VAT) is expressed. Further details are available on the DCMS website < http://www.culture.gov.uk/global/press_notices/archive_2006/dcms084_06.htm> .
Westminster Hall excavation reveals more pieces of a medieval royal table
Trestle fragments made of Purbeck marble have been found beneath the floor of Westminster Hall, adding to those found in the 1960s and on display until recently in the Jewel Tower. When joined together, the fragments make up one of the supports for a magnificent stone table dating from the reign of Edward I (1272 -1307), if not earlier. The trestle resembles a square slab, just under 1m high and 1m deep, pierced by a large and very slightly pointed chamfered arch; the outer vertical face is carved to form a semi-circular pilaster, with shaft rings at top and base. The stone table was probably used for state banquets and located at the dais (southern) end of Westminster Hall from the thirteenth century. Various documents record the purchase of a new Purbeck marble top for the table for Edward II’s coronation in 1307, and the repair of cracks using three long iron cramps in 1399. The table might have been extended over the centuries until it required ten trestles by the time of Henry VIII’s marriage to Katharine of Aragon in 1509. The table was broken up during the Commonwealth (1649Ñü60) and parts ended up being used for floor levelling material where parts were subsequently found in 1960. The most recent discovery was made when Gifford and the Museum of London Archaeology Service excavated the floor area as part of works to resolve problems of subsidence. Chris Thomas, of the Museum of London, said that the find was important because of the rarity of stone furniture surviving for more than 700 years. You get altars in churches but that’s about it, he said.
All Souls rejects Fellow’s legacy
Last November Salon reported the death of our late Fellow John Simmons and stated that his major achievement was in establishing Oxford University as a unique centre for Slavonic studies. What none of us knew at the time was that he also had a bee in his bonnet about the sundial at his college, All Souls, whose position, he felt, ruined the symmetry of the North Quadrangle. In a posthumous attempt to reverse the blight, he has left part of his £880,000 estate to the college on condition that the sundial is taken down from the wall of the Codrington Library, to where it was removed in the 1870s, and re-erected where it was originally positioned by Sir Christopher Wren, that is to say over the south front of the college Chapel. Another condition requires the gravelled areas in the north quad to be paved. A spokesman for the college said, however, that: The college has decided to decline the bequest, adding that the conditions were too onerous.
Global colonisation: chicken or egg
Our Fellow, Paul Mellars, of the University of Cambridge Archaeology Department, has published a paper arguing that the period immediately preceding the colonisation of the globe by the human species was marked by technological developments and changes in human econo
mic and social behaviour but that it is frustratingly difficult to know whether new technologies were the product of new ways of thinking or whether it was the development of new technologies that led to cognitive changes. Writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Online , Professor Mellars asks why, given that anatomically and genetically modern human populations existed in Africa between 150,000 and 200,000 years ago, did a major dispersal of these populations to Asia and Europe not begin until sometime after c 65,000 years ago. Pointing to new mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) evidence for a major population expansion between 80,000 to 60,000 years ago, he links this to recent archaeological discoveries in southern and eastern Africa suggesting that there was a major increase in the complexity of the technological, economic, social and cognitive behaviour of certain African groups at approximately the same time, characterised by stone-blade production, new forms of specialised tools – some composites made from bone or wood with stone inserts – and both personal adornments and the earliest unambiguous forms of abstract art. Reporting on Paul Mellars’s paper in The Times on 13 June 2006, our Fellow Norman Hammond says that such increased technical efficiency combined with population growth could have led to competitive expansion into others’ territories, culminating in the move out of Africa. David Keys, reporting the results in the Independent , went further and claimed that the invention of the world’s first man-made projectiles light-weight throwing spears and bows and arrows enabled the expansion. Paul Mellars himself is more concerned with the chicken and egg question: did these technological, economic and social developments result from external pressures, such as some form of climate change, or from internal changes in the cognitive capacities of early human beings, with explicitly symbolic behaviour preceding major changes in tool technology? Ian Hodder, at a recent lecture to the Society of Antiquaries, strongly favoured the latter as an explanation for agricultural innovations at the 9,000 year-old Neolithic site of Çatalhöyük in Turkey, but Paul Mellars concludes: testing such ideas against hard archaeological data is one of the notorious dilemmas in studies of human cognitive evolution.
Andean people look forward to the past
A similarly mind-bending before/after situation is revealed in an article by Dr Rafael Nunez of the University of California, San Diego, and Professor Eve Sweetser of the University of California, in the journal Cognitive Science , where the authors report that the Aymara people of southern America have a concept of time where the past lies ahead of them and the future behind. Until now, the report says, all the studied cultures and languages of the world have not only characterised time with properties of space, but also have all mapped the future as if it were in front. The Aymara case is the first documented to depart from the standard model. Dr Nunez discussed past and future events with thirty ethnic Aymara adults from northern Chile and concluded that the nayra , the basic word for front, sight or eye in the Aymara language, is used as a metaphor for past, while qhipa , the basic word for back, or behind, is also used to mean future’. Thus the expression nayra mara (last year) can be literally translated as front year. Elderly Aymara also referred to the future by thumbing or waving over their shoulders and swept forward with their hands and arms for now or the near past and farther out, to the full extent of the arm for ancient times.
The language of the Aymara, who live in the Andes highlands of Bolivia, Peru and Chile, has intrigued western scholars since the earliest days of the Spanish conquest. A Jesuit wrote in the early 1600s that Aymara was particularly useful for abstract ideas.
Starbucks comes to eighteenth-century Maryland Inn
Heritage values on the other side of the pond were revealed this week in a story from the Maryland Examiner which reported that planning permission had been given for Starbucks to convert part of the Maryland Inn – a relatively untouched eighteenth-century Annapolis hotel, known as the King of France Tavern when it opened under Sarah Ball’s ownership in the 1780s – into a Starbucks coffee bar. The Annapolis Historic Preservation Commission originally opposed the application, but gave support once agreement was reached with Starbucks for a thorough archaeological investigation prior to conversion of the building. Donna Hole, chief of historic preservation at the Annapolis Historic Preservation Commission, said: the archaeology component will be expensive, but that it was not negotiable. The most telling point in the article was Donna Hole’s statement that: You really want to have a distinctive character to your historic district, but there is increasing pressure when people come here, they want to get what they can get anywhere else in America.
Conferences and seminars
IFA Finds Group, Archaeological Glass, Wednesday 5 July 2006, 10am to 4.30pm
LAARC, Mortimer Wheeler House, 46 Eagle Wharf Road, London N1 7ED
Speakers include Ian Freestone on Glass compositions and their analysis, Angela Wardle on Roman glassworking at Basinghall Street: a case study’ and John Shepherd on the Use and distribution of glass in the Roman period. A speaker yet to be announced will look at aspects of medieval glass, and the day will conclude with a tour of the Museum of London’s ceramics and glass collection led by Roy Stephenson, Manager of the LAARC. Further details from Nicky Powell < mailto:email@example.com> , of the IFA Finds Group.
The Finds Research Group AD 700Ñü1700, ‘Pots and Pans: domestic artefacts of base metal, Saturday 23 September 2006 at the Somerset County Museum, Taunton Based around the recently opened exhibit of English bronze cooking vessels, this day meeting will consider all aspects of cauldrons, skillets and related household implements, including their form, manufacture and use. Further details from firstname.lastname@example.org
English Heritage, the University of Bath and Brunel 200, Genius: Brunel’s engineering achievements and their legacy, 15 September 2006, at STEAM: the Museum of the Great Western Railway in Swindon
On the anniversary of Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s death, this symposium will bring together practitioners and researchers from different disciplines to discuss and present the findings of recent research on topics such as Brunel’s adventurous designs for bridges, his use of cast iron, his spectacular ships and his relationships with other engineers. Please contact Lucie Pursell < mailto:L.Pursell@bath.ac.uk> for an application form and further information.
Books by Fellows
Just out is Graham Parry ‘s new book called The Arts of the Anglican Counter-Reformation: Glory, Laud and Honour, published by Boydell & Brewer (ISBN 1 84383 208 9). Graham describes the book as the first comprehensive account of the religious arts as they were revived by the Laudian movement of the 1620s and 1630s, concerned with the architecture and furnishings of the Church during that brief period when the long Calvinist hostility to religious imagery faded Ñü a period that was terminated by the Civil War. The book covers the sculpture, woodwork, painted glass, religious painting and sacred music of that time, along with the first flickerings of the baroque style in England.
University of the West of England/University of Bristo
l, fully funded PhD studentship: Contemporary Art and Archaeology in the Context of Urban Renewal
The aim of the project is to explore the public understanding and public value of commissioned artistic and archaeological practices in the context of urban regeneration, using contemporary urban regeneration in the Broadmead shopping district of Bristol’s city centre as a case study. Taking as its starting point the broader discourse around public art, patronage and the role of artists in urban renewal on the one hand, and debates over the public understanding and public value of heritage and archaeology on the other, this studentship will make use of research methods drawn from contemporary art, archaeology and ethnography to study the changing material and social environment of Broadmead. The studentship contributes to an ongoing collaboration between the Situations, programme, the Place, research centre in issues of place, location, art, context and environment at UWE and the Performativity, Place, Space, (PPS) research theme at the University of Bristol, including the Arts Council-funded ‘Material City’ programme of seminars and events on Art and Archaeology (a collaboration between Situations and the Department of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Bristol).
Application forms and further particulars from the Situations website < > .
Burlington House refurbishment plans
Feedback is invited on the Society’s plans for the refurbishment of the Meeting Room, Entrance Hall and Principal Staircase of the Burlington House apartments. Outline proposals for the refurbishment have been drawn up by Julian Harrap Architects, the Society’s consultants as conservation architects. Harrap’s detailed proposals will be displayed in the Society’s Library from Monday 26 June and on through to Council’s next meeting on 20 July. Comments are invited from Fellows and should be sent to the General Secretary < mailto:email@example.com> by Monday 17 July. The aim of the refurbishment is to reinstate the appearance of the grand late nineteenth-century interiors while introducing twenty-first-century audio-visual facilities and environmental conditions. The Society’s paintings and objects will be redisplayed in new cases with environmental controls to safeguard the future of the many rare and valuable objects in the Society’s collection. New electrics, lighting and air conditioning will provide a more comfortable environment for users of the Meeting Room, which will also be brought up to date with modern IT and audio-visual facilities. These improvements will, in turn, enable the Society to offer a better service to the many external users who hire the apartments for meetings and events. One of the fundamental issues at stake is the bench seating in the Meeting Room, which is appropriate for formal lectures but limits the use of the meeting room for seminars, smaller meetings, receptions and banquets. Historically the Meeting Room was arranged with a high table at one end, and a lower central table with bench seating arranged as a parliamentary-style debating chamber, so the accommodation has not always been as it is today. Paint samples have been taken from the walls of the Meeting Room, Entrance Hall and Principal Staircase to determine their original and later decorative schemes. Historic floor surfaces have also been examined. The result is a proposal to remove the 1960s vinyl tiles of the Entrance Hall and either reinstate the surviving 1924 terrazzo floor or revert to the original Portland stone and purple marble insets. The pilasters would be painted warm purplish grey, stippled to represent Caerbwdy stone, with ceiling cornices, capitals and bases painted off-white to imitate Portland stone. The red and yellow Spanish brocatello marble fireplace would be the starting point for the decorative scheme in the Meeting Room, using dark Pompeian red as the principal wall colouring, to offset the paintings; alternative colours used in the past are lilac and cinnamon. The proposals drawn up by the architects include alternative cloakroom arrangements, improving the Porter’s Lodge, and commissioning a new stair carpet for the main staircase. Many more small changes are proposed that the architect says will respect and retain the familiarity and sense of place, but will improve the overall appearance of the public areas. Fellows visiting London over the next four weeks are warmly encouraged to visit Burlington House and see the plans for themselves.
SALON – the Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter
Salon 143: 3 July 2006
SALON Editor: Christopher Catling
- Birthday Honours
- News of Fellows
- Obituary: Major-General Viscount Monckton of Brenchley
- Letters to the Daily Telegraph re Stonehenge
- Cross-party support for Stonehenge scheme
- UK National Commission for UNESCO: annual report
- How about a Human Habitat Directive?
- Strawberry fields forever? The polytunnel debate
- The future of London’s Theatre Museum
- Legislation to ban samurai swords
- Vote of confidence in the Heritage Lottery Fund
- Lottery largesse
- SPAB wins HLF funding to help volunteers maintain historic places of worship
- Online Dictionary of Scottish Architects
- Pertinax and his father: imperial portraits in Britain
- For sale: Bronze Age site of national importance
- World’s oldest necklace: two 100,000-year-old shells
- A record-breaking week in the London sale rooms: disaster for national galleries
- The joys of listed buildings casework
- Books by Fellows
Salon’s swift perusal of the Queen’s Birthday Honours List on 17 June failed to spot that our Fellow Margaret Mullett was created an OBE for services to Higher Education. Professor Mullett is the Director of the Institute of Byzantine Studies and Director of the Gender Initiative, at Queen’s University, Belfast. And double apologies to Sir Barry Cunliffe first for the extra c that wandered into his name in the last issue of Salon, turning him into Cuncliffe an error quickly spotted by our Fellow Tim Ambrose, who used to be Barry’s Research Assistant at Oxford; and then for describing him as a Knight Batchelor, instead of Bachelor. As our Fellow Lawrence Keppie pointed out, this suggests that Barry’s coat of arms might include a tin of processed peas!
News of Fellows
Congratulations to our Fellow Gordon Barclay, who moved on earlier this year from his role as Principal Inspector in charge of the Scheduling Programme with Historic Scotland’s Inspectorate, into the Policy Group, where he now
glories in the title of Head of National Policy an exciting job at a time when heritage is being recognised by politicians as a fundamental part of Scotland’s identity. Our Fellow Lord Redesdale is standing for election to the post of Lord Speaker of the House of Lords. If elected, he has promised to do as little as possible, Lord Redesdale (Rupert Mitford) is one of nine peers standing fo
r the newly created post, which replaces the role of the Lord Chancellor, who has for centuries sat on the Woolsack to preside over the debates and votes of the second chamber. All nine candidates have pledged to do nothing to change the character of the Lords, which prides itself on being a self-regulating chamber, not given to the kind of barracking and yahoo behaviour of the other chamber, where the Speaker is frequently required to keep order. Peers voted on Thursday 28 June, but the result will not be announced until the new Lord Speaker takes his or her seat on Tuesday 4 July. Though the post is largely ceremonial, it comes with an enviable income: a salary of £101,668, an allowance of £33,990 and ceremonial black and gold robes costing £10,000 all for three hours work on four days a week, for about thirty-five weeks a year.
Obituary: Major-General Viscount Monckton of Brenchley
Our late Fellow the Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (Gilbert Walter Riversdale Monckton) died on 22 June 2006, at the age of ninety. Fellows who watched the TV documentary made some years ago about the ending of the right of hereditary peers to sit in the House of Lords might well remember Viscount Monckton, who sought election to one of the small number of seats allocated to hereditary peers in the reformed chamber on a manifesto that included the muzzling of all cats to prevent cruelty to mice (his intention being to ridicule the Government’s antipathy to hunting). He failed to secure a seat and retired from politics to the small farm he loved so much in Kent (Runhams Farm, at Harrietsham, near Maidstone), where his habit of dressing in old clothes with bailer twine for a belt gave no hint of his earlier military career or to his standing in the county as Deputy Lieutenant. Gilbert Monckton was born at Ightham Mote. His father Walter, the first Viscount, was an adviser to King Edward VIII during the abdication crisis of 1936 and a Conservative minister in the 1950s and 1960s. Gilbert read Agriculture at Trinity College, Cambridge, graduating in 1939. His distinguished wartime career saw him awarded the Military Cross in May 1940 for bravery, after his squadron, part of the Second Armoured Reconnaissance Brigade, fought its way to freedom despite being encircled by enemy armoured cars, motorcyclists and anti-tank guns. He subsequently served in Palestine and Italy, in 1944, in Korea in 1951Ñü2, and in the War Office, in 1953, as military adviser to the British delegation at the Geneva Convention on French Indo-China and Korea, for which he was appointed OBE for his services in 1956. He was then appointed to command the Twelfth Royal Lancers with the British Army of the Rhine, before being made Commander of the Royal Armoured Corps.In 1962 he returned to the War Office as deputy director of personnel administration and was promoted major-general the following year on his appointment as director of public relations for the army. Good-humoured and quick on his feet, Fleet Street came to appreciate his competence and wit, and he set a standard for army press relations that endured beyond his appointment. He left the Army in 1967, two years after succeeding as the second Viscount. As a crossbencher in the House of Lords he was a frequent critic of Governments of every political complexion for their neglect of rural interests and the Armed Forces. Archaeology and heraldry were long-standing interests and he was president of the Kent Archaeological Society (1968-75) and of the Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies (1965-2000). He was also responsible for the formation of the Order of Malta Volunteers (OMV), which encouraged young Catholics to accompany pilgrims to Lourdes and help the destitute.
Several readers wrote following last week’s report in Salon on the headless burials recently found in York to say that this is a practice by no means confined to York and that similar burials have been found at the Lankhills cemetery, in Winchester, and at Poundbury, Dorchester, further evidence to suggest that they were not the result of mass-murder or, one suspects, gladiators. Our Fellow Diana Murray, Secretary (Chief Executive) of the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Scotland (RCAHMS), writes with further information concerning the legacy of our late Fellow, Dr Brian Hope-Taylor, and to correct a few of the errors reported in last week’s Daily Telegraph story saying that the Bamburgh sword had been rescued by former students, from a skip outside Dr Hope-Taylor’s home. The former students who had the presence of mind to investigate what might still be held at his house were, according to Diana, all Fellows of the Society: namely Professor Ian Ralston, Professor James Graham Campbell and myself. We did indeed save material from the skip but not quite in such a dramatic manner as described! The archive comprises excavation drawings, photographs and notebooks, together with the personal and professional papers of Hope-Taylor’s life and work. It includes the records from his archaeological excava tions of the late 1940s to mid-1970s, most of which are unpublished (Old Windsor, Farthing Down and Bamburgh Castle, for example).
With funding from English Heritage, RCAHMS and Historic Scotland, RCAHMS was able to run a project to do a preliminary sort of the papers and artefacts that we were able to retrieve from the house. We have since been trying to raise funds to catalogue the 31,000 archive items now in the Brian Hope-Taylor Collection held at RCAHMS. A bid to the Arts and Humanities Research Council for funding for a major project to enable the material to be properly listed and the documentary material made available for public and research use and the artefacts allocated to suitable locations was unsuccessful. The AHRC bid would also have enabled research into a largely undocumented period of the history of the development of archaeological thought and practice, which is
very well illustrated in the personal papers and correspondence in the collection. Since then RCAHMS has successfully raised small amounts of funding, with the help of local sponsors, adding to its own gradual contribution to the cataloguing some of the key projects contained within the archive. The information that has been catalogued is available on Canmore www.rcahms.gov.uk and many of the items are digitised. Unfortunately about two-thirds of the collection remains uncatalogued at present. We are continuing to work with other organisations and potential sponsors to raise funds to deal with the rest of the material. Anyone interested can contact Diana (firstname.lastname@example.org) by email. Duncan Brown has written to reinforce the point that the Archives Standards document he is working on (and on which feedback is warmly invited; see the IFA website is an initiative of the Archaeological Archives Forum. Salon gave the impression that this was an initiative of the Institute of Field Archaeologists, which is one of several bodies supporting the current draft. Duncan says: the AAF deserves any mention it can get, as we’re busy promoting a goodly number of initiatives and projects, including the mapping of museum collecting areas and disaster planning for temporary archive repositories. For further information, see the AAF’s web page www.britarch.ac.uk/archives
Letters to the Daily Telegraph re Stonehenge
Letters from our General Secretary, David Gaimster, and from our Fellow Mike Pitts were published in the Daily Telegraph on 24 June. In both cases the
edited letter as published bore little resemblance to the letters as sent, so, for the record, here are both versions. The letters as published:
Sir: As an archaeologist and guide committed to Stonehenge for some 25 years, I see the proposed 1.3-mile road tunnel as the solution to existing road and traffic desecration (Romancing the Stones, Weekend, June 17). The approved tunnel would transform the landscape around Stonehenge both for the wildlife and for millions of people. To achieve Adam Nicolson’s suggestion would require a 3.5-mile tunnel at a cost of, who knows, some £1.5 billion? Stonehenge is wondrous, but to solve real problems we have to think in the real world.
Mike Pitts, Marlborough, Wilts
Sir: As well as taking into consideration conservation issues around Stonehenge, we believe it is important to focus on the problems of the A303. The road is noisy, the junction of the A303 and A344 is dangerous, and many motorists are inconvenienced by traffic jams. Building a short tunnel along the line of the existing road would harm only that part of the World Heritage Site that has already been compromised, and will offer many benefits. Opposition from the National Trust to the short-bored tunnel could lead to government delays in making any kind of a decision and will not help the people whose lives are blighted by the existing A303.
David Gaimster, General Secretary, Society of Antiquaries of London, London W1
The letters as submitted:
Sir: All who know the countryside around Stonehenge will have appreciated Adam Nicolson’s evocative and informed description (Weekend, June 17). His rejection of the proposed 1.3 mile road tunnel is the more puzzling, as many who have similarly engaged with that landscape, in my case for over 25 years as a committed archaeologist and guide, see it as the solution to existing road and traffic desecration, not their harbinger.
At first light, and a mile or so upwind of the road, (depending, of course, on which way the wind blows), there can indeed be still, unworldly grandeur. Closer to Stonehenge, where two roads cut the monument from its rightful place like a pinned butterfly, that never is. The approved tunnel would transform for the better the stones and landscape for wildlife and millions of people. A longer tunnel would place the western portal in yet more precious landscape (the world heritage site boundary is a bureaucratic line through paradise). Contrary to what Nicolson says, the eastern portal can only be inside the WHS. To achieve his suggestion would need a 3.5 mile tunnel at a cost of, who knows, some £1,500 million? Stonehenge is wondrous, but to solve real problems we have to think in the real world.
Mike Pitts, Marlborough, Wilts
Sir: In his description of Stonehenge (Daily Telegraph, 17 June 2006), Adam Nicolson paints an evocative portrait of what the restored landscape could be like without roads, but tellingly his magnificent landscape is also empty of people; indeed, he mildly mocks the plans that English Heritage have for providing land-train access to the site for people unable to walk from the proposed new visitor centre. In addition to the conservation issues, the Society of Antiquaries of London firmly believes that the people are central to the debate: the people who live along the A303 route (principally in Winterbourne Stoke) who deserve to be relieved from traffic noise and pollution; the people who are involved in accidents every year at the dangerous A303/A344 junction; the people whose journeys along the A303 are inconvenienced by the traffic jams; and the millions of people whose visits to Stonehenge fall short of the life-changing experience that it might be because of the poverty of the setting and the interpretation facilities. Building a short tunnel along the line of the existing road, we argue, harms only that part of the World Heritage Site that has already been compromised archaeologically, and offers manifold people’ benefits. Like Adam Nicholson, we would love a longer tunnel, but that isn’t an option on offer from the Highways Agency and we have to be realistic in accepting the Planning Inspector’s conclusion that a doubling of the cost does not deliver proportionate benefits. What worries us is that opposition to the short-bored tunnel from the National Trust will lead not to a better solution, but to Government delays in making any kind of a decision. Quarrelling archaeologists will be blamed for the continued failure to resolve the Stonehenge traffic problem. That will do no good for the image of archaeology, and nor will it help the people whose lives are currently blighted by the existing A303, even if it does mean a kind of victory for the National Trust.
David Gaimster, General Secretary, Society of Antiquaries of London, London W1
Cross-party support for Stonehenge scheme
On 27 June, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on World Heritage voted unanimously to back the published scheme for the A303 at Stonehenge, giving strong cross-party support for the short-bored tunnel. Chaired by Labour’s David Wright (MP for Telford), with Don Foster (LibDem, Bath) and Hugo Swire (Con, Devon East) as Vice-Chairs, the All Party Parliamentary Group has also agreed to write to the Department of Transport with a strong message of support for the tunnel.
UK National Commission for UNESCO: annual report
The UK National Commission for UNESCO has also reiterated its support for the published scheme in its newly published Annual Report (2006) http://www.unesco.org.uk/AR06.htm. The same Annual Report has information on the work of the UNESCO Conventions Working Group, recently set up under the Chairmanship of our General Secretary, Dr David Gaimster, with the remit of providing advice to Government with respect to the UK’s position on UNESCO conventions.
The Working Group has identified six priority conventions: the Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict (1954 and 1999), the Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export & Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property (1970), the Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage (2001), the Convention on the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003), the Convention for the Protection of the Diversity of Cultural Contents and Artistic Expressions (2005), and the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (1972) Ñü this last convention being the only one that the UK has so far ratified.
How about a Human Habitat Directive?
Countryside Voice, the magazine of the Campaign to Protect Rural England, prints extracts in its summer 2006 edition from a Presidential speech given by our Fellow Sir Neil Cossons to the Royal Geographic Society earlier this year. As is his habit, Sir Neil makes a number of points well worth pondering, including the suggestion that there is a certain amount of irony in protecting the habitats of great crested newts but not those of human beings. Sir Neil’s aim is to tackle the label nimby’ that is so often used as a term of derision by politicians for conservationists. The acronym was popularised in the UK by the late Nicholas Ridley when he was Secretary of State for the Environment in 1986-9 under Margaret Thatcher, but the American origins of the phrase are obvious in the use of the phrase back yard, and the Oxford English Dictionary credits the Christian Science Monitor in 1980 as the source. The original point about nimbyism was that it accepted the necessity for development, but wanted it put elsewhere: the term was used to imply the selfishness of people who opposed affordable housing, drug rehabilitation centres, landfill and incinerators, hospitals, new roads or industrial developments in their area, but were happy to see them built else
where. Sir Neil argues that much development is actually elective and has nothing to do with any social good. Instead it is undertaken in the name of choice, a favourite term of the current generation of politicians of all parties. But, as Salon argued in the last issue in relation to the question of political support for what people really value, the choice’ equation is often unbalanced. Sir Neil argues that the choice of some people to eat green beans or strawberries in the middle of winter is often achieved at great social cost: these choices are achieved in return for airports, roads, pollution, armadillo-like sheds spreading across the Midlands, polytunnels marching across the hills of Herefordshire (see next story), the over exploitation of water resources in Kenya, the closure of small shops and farms, the orange halo in the night sky, the roar of traffic never absent from our lives and the sound of birds or the sight of butterflies threatening to become a memory. Sir Neil describes these degraded human habitats as choice-driven landscapes’ and says that the problem lies with a planning system biased in favour of the choice’ mentality and oblivious to the potentially disastrous consequences. He wants a new planning mentality that is based on respect for intrinsic quality and that genuinely puts liveability and sustainability first Ñü words that are repeated by politicians almost as often as the word choice, but not ones that seem yet to be embedded in the instincts of decision makers. Sir Neil argues that fiscal measures are an important tool for forcing decision makers to make sustainable choices. And sometimes those choices might not be the obvious ones: who would have thought, for example, that one might ever hear Sir Neil praising Tesco and suggesting that online shopping might be the key to reducing traffic in urban areas?
Strawberry fields forever? The polytunnel debate
Anyone who has visited Leominster recently will be only too well aware that the beautiful green hills surrounding this loveable market town have turned plastic: the Arrow Valley, a quintessentially English landscape, is slowly being covered in polythene, in part because the local authority seems to have decided that polytunnels are permitted agricultural developments that do not need planning permission. In Waverley, Surrey, the local authority has taken the opposite view: the Hall Hunter Partnership is going to the Court of Appeal to fight a decision by the council that polytunnels do require planning permission. What needs to be understood in this debate is that the simple erection of polythene tunnels as a protective environment for soft fruit and salad crops is not the only issue: objectors also point to the large-scale earth-moving operations that precede the tunnels, designed to create level growing areas and install the large scale drainage works needed to accommodate rainwater run-off and irrigation systems (goodbye archaeology), the sterilisation of the soil and its saturation with pesticides, fungicides, herbicides and fertilisers, the lorry movements in and out of the farm that increase as production rises and what Bill Wiggin, the MP for Leominster, recently described as the makeshift villages of 400 caravans, leisure centres, football pitches and saunas Ñü all built without planning permission’ to accommodate the casual labourers employed to work in the tunnels.
The MP for Leominster also happens to be the Conservative spokesman for agriculture, and his decision to speak out on behalf of constituents who object to the polytunnels has led to a political storm in a teacup: the National Farmers’ Union predictably described Mr Wiggin’s as unpatriotic for not supporting British farmers and claims that his concern for his constituents is in direct conflict, with his Shadow Cabinet role. Representatives of the fruit-growing industry say that people want to buy grade-1 British fruit from May to September and that polytunnels help them meet supermarket demand. All this might seem a long way from the concerns of an antiquary, but, as Sir Neil Cossons has pointed out, this is a prime example of consumer choice driving changes that have major consequences for the landscape. This is exactly what planning law was designed to measure and adjudicate: what is needed now is for the Government to end the inconsistency and uncertainty over whether polytunnels do or do not need planning permission. Meanwhile, concerned antiquaries might like to do their part by boycotting tasteless supermarket strawberries Ñü as all fruit connoisseurs know, there is only one kind of strawberry ever worth eating and that is the home-grown variety.
The future of London’s Theatre Museum
Our Fellow John Earl is a published historian of theatre architecture and the origins of the music hall, a former director of the Theatres Trust, a specialist in the conservation of historic theatres and an occasional contributor to Theatre Museum exhibitions and lecture programmes. Naturally enough he therefore has a high regard for the Theatre Museum and he has written to Salon to draw Fellows, attention to the current debate concerning the museum’s future. The Theatre Museum has a varied and wide-ranging collection: John Piper’s model for the set of Benjamin Britten’s Rape of Lucretia, costumes by Bakst for the Russian Ballet, eighteenth-century theatre paintings and play bills, designs by Edward Gordon Craig, photographs and memorabilia, videos of all genres of theatrical performance, from Shakespeare to rock opera. For a long while the collection was held at the Victoria and Albert Museum, and used as the basis for occasional exhibitions. Only in 1987 did the collection get its own separate building and a permanent display space in the heart of Theatreland, in Covent Garden. Since then attendance has been lower than expected, running costs have remained high and the museum building itself, consisting of a series of cramped basement rooms, has always been problematic. Ambitious plans for the redevelopment of the building were announced in 2003, but were dependent on a grant of £12m from the Heritage Lottery Fund, which proved not to be forthcoming. A revised application made in 2005 was also turned down. In April this year, the Trustees of the Victoria and Albert Museum issued a consultation paper putting forward two possible options for the Theatre Museum’s future. One is a return to the situation that prevailed before 1987: abandonment of the Covent Garden site and the return of the material collections to the V&A, where space would be allotted for temporary exhibitions. The second would be to try to redevelop the Covent Garden building in partnership with a major performing arts organisation, such as the Royal Opera House; in this event, most of the collection would still be hidden away at the V&A, because the Theatre Museum itself would be devoted to events, workshops and educational facilities, with only temporary displays. Numerous voices of concern have been raised about both options, and the common cry of all the critics is for a permanent national museum dedicated to an art form in which Britain has led the world for more than four centuries, and that allows the full riches of the collection to be displayed, within a context that also allows for performance as well as the display of static objects. To realise this vision requires boldness and imagination on the part of the V&A Trustees and a change of heart on the part of the Government which seems to have rejected the idea of funding a new national museum.
When the V&A’s Trustees last met on 18 May to consider responses to the options outlined above, they appear to have reached no conclusion. Apparently a number of proposals have emerged and further possibilities are being explored. John Earl, who has himself been a passionate advocate for a museum that does full justice to an art that has shaped our language, our literature and our national character, says that a decision is expected this autumn and that the present delay in making a de
cision may be seen as hopeful. His own advice to the V&A Trustees is to rediscover a little of the adventurous spirit that brought the V&A into existence in 1852. It is time to champion the Theatre Museum, not to emasculate it.
Legislation to ban samurai swords
In his capacity as European Vice-President of the Society for the Preservation of Japanese Art Swords (the NBTHK, or Nihon bijutsu token hozon kyukai), our Fellow John Nandris has written to the Home Office to express concern at a possible blanket ban on the ownership of samurai swords, because of their use in violent crime. The Government is considering adding samurai swords, to the list of offensive weapons that it is an offence to sell, manufacture or import under the Criminal Justice Act 1988 (Offensive Weapons) Order. John Nandris has pointed out that an indiscriminate ban would severely hamper the academic work of learned bodies such as the Japan Society, the Japanese Departments of the British Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum, the School of Oriental and African Studies, the Sainsbury Institute and other bodies committed to the study of the Japanese sword and its cultural context. In addition to these institutions, John says, there are many knowledgeable collectors, here and in Europe and America, who also study the Japanese sword and have legitimately invested major sums of their money in the process. The Japanese sword has an important place in the Asiatic art market, in which London is the leading centre outside Japan. For its part, the Home Office has promised to consider carefully how it defines samurai swords, to consult relevant bodies and to consider exemptions for certain types of activities.
Vote of confidence in the Heritage Lottery Fund
Now for some good news: the Department of Culture, Media and Sport announced last week that the respective shares of Lottery proceeds given to the arts and film, sport, and heritage will remain unchanged until 2019 at the earliest. Although the absolute amount of money received by the Heritage Lottery Fund is likely to fall, in part because of reduced lottery income overall and in part because lottery funds will be used to finance the 2012 Olympics, the respective shares between arts and film, sport and heritage will remain unchanged, none of these good causes will be abolished and no new ones will be added. The decision was based in part on a consultation, which DCMS described as by far the most successful consultation the Department has run, with over 11,000 responses’. Over half of these respondents specifically expressed support or strong support for heritage. Respondents gave overwhelming support for the existing share balance, said very firmly that each cause was important and that they wanted stability and continuity. In announcing the outcome of the consultation, Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell also outlined the main priorities that lottery distributors would be asked to address in their strategic planning and grant giving over the period from 2009 to 2019. These will include increasing participation, inspiring young people, involving local communities, supporting volunteers and encouraging creativity among new talent and developing skills. Dame Liz Forgan, Chair of HLF, commented by saying: this is wonderful news for our heritage and a recognition of its importance to our success as a modern society.’
Last week’s good news coincided with a flood of announcements from the Heritage Lottery Fund concerning recent grants. The swimmers amongst us will be pleased to hear that restoration grants have been awarded to the Grade-II listed Uxbridge Lido, in north-west London (uniquely designed in the shape of a twelve-sided star), Sandford Parks Lido, in Cheltenham, and Brockwell Lido, in south London.
Carole Souter, Heritage Lottery Fund Director, said: Lidos are extremely popular with young and old. These particular examples are real gems. Lottery money will help make sure that they continue to be enjoyed by everyone. Janet Smith, author of Liquid Assets: the lidos and open-air pools of Britain, said: We have already lost more than 300 lidos and open-air pools in Britain and we have to do our utmost to ensure that the remaining 100 pools continue long into the future. The allocation of nearly £2m by the Heritage Lottery Fund to three outdoor pools is a major contribution to that goal. The HLF’s long-standing commitment to the restoration of Britain’s public parks was reinforced by the announcement that HLF is joining forces with the Big Lottery Fund (BIG) to launch Parks for People, a new scheme which will see a further £160 million invested in the UK’s parks over the next three years. One park that has benefited recently is the Grade-I listed Croome Park in Worcester, acquired and restored by the National Trust, thanks to a £5 million HLF grant. Croome Parke officially opened to the public last week following a ten-year project to restore 674 acres of land forming the core of the landscape park which was designed by Capability Brown for the sixth Earl of Coventry (for further information, see the National Trust’s website).
SPAB wins HLF funding to help volunteers maintain historic places of worship
The Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings was also toasting HLF largesse last week having been told that it would receive a grant of £645,000 towards an ambitious £850,000 scheme to train people of all faith groups in England and Wales to care for their listed places of worship. The grant will enable SPAB to run thirty tailor-made courses a year, training over 6,000 volunteers in the maintenance of significant historic structures. In addition, SPAB will provide two special courses for young people (over sixteen), one of these taking place at the Society’s annual summer working party at a church in need. Volunteers attending SPAB’s new courses will learn about maintenance, the causes of building decay, planning ahead, monitoring and spotting potential problems. The courses will distinguish between work that can be carried out by volunteers and when to call in a professional, and will include advice on managing relationships with professional advisers and builders. The courses will provide opportunities for networking (important for isolated wardens) and enable participants to adapt English Heritage maintenance plans for their own buildings with expert advice to hand. Our Fellow Philip Venning, SPAB Secretary, said: Our research clearly shows that there is a very real need for a course of this sort. Volunteers genuinely want to learn about the buildings they care for so that they can do the right things to maintain and protect them. Few churchwardens, for example, have relevant training, yet they are responsible for nearly half of England’s grade I buildings. They already do an excellent job, but this training will enhance their work.’Our Fellow, Stephen Johnson, Heritage Lottery Fund Director of Operations, said: Volunteers are absolutely vital to the work of the heritage sector and especially to places of worship. This substantial grant will enable thousands of volunteers to gain real expertise and will inspire more people to become actively involved in their local heritage. The project is also being supported by English Heritage, which has provided £75,000 towards the total cost, with the remainder being funded by SPAB and other partners.
Online Dictionary of Scottish Architects
Writing in The Times last week, our Fellow Marcus Binney paid tribute to the work of another Fellow, Professor David Walker, whose online Dictionary of Scottish Architects has just been launched.< http://www.scottisharchitects.org.uk Marc
us says that, in his capacity as Chief Inspector of Historic Buildings with Historic Scotland, David Walker provided Scotland with the most comprehensive list of listed buildings in Europe, and now he has, in retirement, produced a reference work of world-class relevance, covering the work of many notable Scottish architects who worked beyond the borders of Scotland – not just in England, but prolifically in Australia, India and Canada, notably in Montreal and British Columbia.
he dictionary already charts the work of more than 6,300 Victorian and early twentieth-century architects and practices, with details of 33,769 historic buildings. Like Sir Howard Colvin’s groundbreaking Dictionary of English Architects (1660Ñü1840), first published in 1954′, Marcus writes, it is based not just on secondary sources but on first-hand archival research and, in Walker’s case, face-to-face interviews. The database also shows up pupils and assistants working for architects and, thanks to support of the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the entire dictionary is available online free of charge. David Walker’s assistant, Abigail Grater, says: You can search by name or building type. You can bring up churches or cinemas in a particular town, or search for buildings in a particular street. If you have an old house plan with the address of the architect but not his name, you can enter that address and find out which architect had an office there. You can also search for clients, including your own family.
Pertinax and his father: imperial portraits in Britain
Our Fellow Martin Henig writes to say that he has come across an interesting and highly plausible article in a German Festschrift. As it concerns the two very well-known marble sculptures from the Lullingstone Roman villa, Fellows might be interested. In a paper entitled The Roman portraits from the villa of Lullingstone: Pertinax and his father, P Helvius Successus” (pages 47 to 53 in Ganschow, T and Steinhart, M 2005. Otium: Festschrift für Volker Michael Strocka, Remshalden) Richard de Kind points to the very striking resemblance between the second deliberately damaged Lullingstone portrait and a portrait head in Aquileia generally held to be a portrait of Pertinax before his succession to the imperial throne in AD 193.Pertinax served as Legatus Augusti after Ulpius Marcellus, and it is possible that Lullingstone served as a luxurious retreat for the governor during his brief sojourn. The bust was damaged as a result of an unofficial damnatio memoriae by soldiers who resented his firm discipline and were unable to find the fleeing governor. The other portrait is explained as probably that of his father, P Helvius Successus, and is mid-second century in date. If this highly plausible paper is correct, we have here a very important marble portrait, one of only a handful from Britain to portray an emperor.
For sale: Bronze Age site of national importance
Our Fellows Lesley and Roy Adkins spotted the following in their local newspaper and thought it might appeal to any Fellow with a few thousand pounds to spare: Tintagel, former corn mill and derelict cottage close to two magnificent Bronze Age stone carvings dating from 1400 to 1800 BC set in a splendid wooded valley beside a cascading stream only 200 yards from the Atlantic Ocean. Auction 11th July. Auction guide £65,000′. Further information from Stags’ Launceston office, tel: 01566 774999 (ref: C20675/11).
World’s oldest necklace: two 100,000-year-old shells
Salon has previously reported the finding of pierced shells from Cyprus and from South Africa as possibly the oldest known examples of personal adornment, at something like 75,000 years old. But now two shells from separate sites have been found whose dating pushes back the date for bead-working to at least 100,000 years ago. A article in the journal Science published last week reports the conclusions of a study of the beads by a team from Britain, France and Israel, whose members included Chris Stringer, research leader in human origins at the Natural History Museum. The shells were excavated between 1931 and 1932 from the Middle Palaeolithic site at Es-Skhul, Mount Carmel, Israel, and from Oued Djebbana, Bir-el-Ater, Algeria. The original excavators had been concerned with human remains and tools, so the significance of the shells had not been appreciated at the time. Professor Stringer said that dating of the shells supports the idea that modern human anatomy and behaviour have deep roots in Africa’; examples of personal adornment found in continental Europe date from 30,000 years ago.
Microscopic analysis shows that the shells had been artificially pierced, probably with flint tools, and may have been hung on sinew, fibres or leather for use as pendants or in necklaces. Dr Sarah James, an analytical geochemist at the Natural History Museum, confirmed the date of the shells by chemically matching the sediment attached to one of the shells with that from the levels of human burials at the Skhul site, which have already been dated from between 100,000 to 135,000 years ago.
A record-breaking week in the London sale rooms: disaster for national galleries
Writing in the Observer on 25 June, our Fellow Charles Saumarez Smith, director of the National Gallery, argued that the record prices achieved over the last fortnight for works of art (£73m for Klimt’s Portrait of Adele Bloch-Bauer; £2.9m for David Hockney’s The Splash) is depressing news for those who hold responsibility for adding works of art to the collections of museums and galleries in this country. Charles asks how a situation has arisen where galleries in the UK cannot afford to invest in new acquisitions (except through the exceptional funding of £965,000 spent by the National Heritage Memorial Fund and £4,039,950 spent by the Heritage Lottery Fund last year) when provincial museums in France, the Netherlands, Sweden or Denmark can mount exhibitions of international significance based on recent acquisitions. His answer is that the Chancellor has consistently turned his back on fiscal measures that work elsewhere. In 2003, he writes, Paul Boateng, then Chief Secretary to the Treasury, commissioned a long report from Sir Nicholas Goodison, FSA, on how the Treasury might help museums and galleries fund acquisitions. Nothing was done about it. More recently, the National Art Collections Fund put together a programme called Living and Giving, which demonstrated how the Treasury could support lifetime gifts through tax incentives. It was shelved. It was said Gordon Brown thought that this was an issue of no interest to taxpayers. But surely taxpayers understand that it is in the national interest to maintain lively and active museums? Charles Saumarez Smith concludes: If museums and galleries are unable to acquire works of art, we limit our intellectual and artistic horizons. We have to rely on a purely reactive strategy of acquisitions, getting works of art only when their export has been blocked. What we need is an effective national strategy whereby museums and galleries are able to acquire works of art systematically – in the middle market as well as at the top end, overseas as well as in this country, in design as well as fine art, in new areas of collecting as well as enabling us to buy the greatest and most significant works of art which have been in this country for generations.
A bumper issue of the IFA’s magazine The Archaeologist, dedicated on this occasion to the archaeology of medieval Britain, arrived in last week’s post (for copies contact the Editor, Alison Taylor, FSA). Among many eye-catching articles (illustrated with pictures that show just how beautiful medieval pottery can be) is one that suggests sugar production might have been going on in medieval Scotland. The finds from pottery kilns at Stenhouse include three vessels of a type normally used for sugar refinement and for which there ar
e no known Scottish parallels. The author of the article, our Fellow Derek Hall, draws a link between these vessels and the Knights Hospitaller, whose preceptory was located at Torphichen, near Stenhouse, pointing out that sugar production in Europe was linked to the Crusades. mailto:email@example.com Elsewhere in the same magazine, one learns of a catalogue of diseases and conditions to which the medieval body was prey – proving that obesity and diabetes are not just modern phenomena and that arthritis and something called Schmorl’s nodes (possibly the result of heavy lifting) were commonplace; Salon’s editor had to consult a medical dictionary to track down the prognosis for sufferers from klippel-feil syndrome, (a condition that causes the neck vertebrae to fuse, limiting head rotation), and rotator cuff disease’ (a cause of chronic shoulder pain), both of which were found at the seventh- to ninth-century cemetery in Auldhame, East Lothian.
The joys of listed buildings casework
Society newsletters are very much a mixed bag, but that of the Ancient Monuments Society is always a joy Ñü something to look forward to reading from cover to cover on a long rail journey. The Summer 2006 issue alone is well worth the modest subscription (see the AMS website for further information). For those who are not yet members, here is a taster: a light-hearted piece written by our Fellow Frank Kelsall, who is also case officer for the AMS, on some of the supporting statements that he has collected in recent months from applicants for listed building consent to justify their proposed works. It is surprising how many listed buildings have roofs which need repairing badly, Frank writes, or cornices that have dental mouldings – but then, one list description refers to a building with dog-eared architraves, http://www.AncientMonumentsSociety.org.uk
Why did an owner in Wales think he would help his case by proposing that all exterior plumbing work will be situated and styled to be as intrusive as possible? An applicant in Yorkshire sent in a drawing captioned: conversion of existing bard into a dwelling an architectural consultant in Herefordshire must obviously have had self-denying clients for whom she had designed an elevation which will be more ascetically pleasing”; agents for works at Huddersfield must have had the principle of reversibility in mind and taken the long-term view when they proposed to cover the décor up for prosperity while we were told that the natural creep of the timber in a house in Kent had been exasperated by the failure of the wall support. Frank acknowledges that automated spell checkers might be responsible for some of these malapropisms, but asks how we account for Amdega Conservatories, statement, made of a building in Falmouth: the building is a Grade-II Listed Georgian terrace, but it has no architectural or historical interest. Architects for a proposed extension to a farmhouse in Oxfordshire wrote that we can create a very pleasant kitchen in the spirit of the original pigsty, while eminent planning consultants supported works to an Oxfordshire public house with the statement that it is proposed to remove some of the partition work on the more modern toilet extension in order to open this up for trading purposes. Do you think, asks Frank, that they really meant that?
Books by Fellow
Lecturing to the Society on Portus Romae: a new survey of the port of Imperial Rome, in February 2002, our Director, Martin Millett, characterized ancient Rome’s port as one of those well-known sites, about which little is actually known. We know a great deal more, however, from the project that forms the subject of Portus: an archaeological survey of the port of Imperial Rome, by Simon Keay, FSA, Martin Millett, FSA, Lidia Paroli and Kristina Strutt (newly published as British School at Rome Archaeological Monograph 15, available from Oxbow Books. The project set out to use non-destructive techniques of topographic and geophysical survey in combination with systematic surface collection to provide a new understanding of the plan of Portus. The work was undertaken between 1997 and 2002 as a collaboration between the Soprintendenza per i Beni Archeologici di Ostia, the British School at Rome and the universities of Southampton, Durham and Cambridge. This volume presents the full results of the survey and uses them as the basis for a re-evaluation of the whole port complex, begun in AD 42 and still the principal port for the city of Rome into the Byzantine period. This key Mediterranean centre for passengers and for the loading, unloading, trans-shipment an storage of products from across the Empire, was also designed to make an ideological statement about the supremacy of Rome in the world.< http://www.oxbowbooks.com
New from Oxford University Press is just one of the books that has kept our former President, Professor Rosemary Cramp, busier than ever since her retirement. The Corpus of Anglo-Saxon Stone Sculpture, Volume VII, covers the richly endowed counties of Devon, Somerset, Dorset and Wiltshire, including individual sculptures of the highest quality, such as the angels from Bradford-on-Avon and Winterbourne Steepleton, or the newly discovered Congresbury figures. Most of the monuments in this volume were carved at a time when Wessex art was at its zenith in the tenth and eleventh centuries; the volume sets the sculpture within a historical, topographical and art-historical context, highlighting the close links with contemporary manuscripts and metalwork, and including a full photographic record of each sculpture, with many new illustrations unique to the corpus. OUP is offering early-birds a discount on the full publication price of £65: orders placed directly with OUP quoting code AAKHCRA06 will only cost £48.75: for an order form contact Katie Hellier, in Academic Marketing at OUP. mailto:Katharine.firstname.lastname@example.org
East Sussex County Council, County Archaeologist
Salary £30,843 to £33,315, closing date 7 July 2006
A successor is sought to our Fellow Andrew Woodcock, who is retiring shortly from his post as County Archaeologist for East Sussex, a county whose rich historic environment includes medieval shipwrecks, submerged forests, Bronze Age farms, Napoleonic and World War II remains and numerous historic villages and towns. The County Archaeologist is the focal point for all archaeological issues in the county for land developers, government departments and members of the public on a wide range of issues, in particular running an advice service for City, Borough and District Councils.For further details, please email email@example.com quoting reference TE511.
English Heritage, Conservation Director
Salary c £60,000, closing date 14 July 2006
As the national champion for historic buildings conservation, the post holder will be responsible for developing technical and scientific research programmes and providing technical expertise as well as for contributing to national policy on the historic environment. Demonstrable leadership and presentation skills are essential, as is extensive experience of working with historic buildings For further details, email recruitHQ@english-heritage.org.uk quoting R/48/06 only in the subject box.
British School at Athens: Director
Salary to be negotiated (at UK professorial rates), closing date 27 August 2006 Applications and nominations are invited for the post of Director of the British School at Athens from 1 October 2007. Applicants should be established scholars with experience of the archaeology or culture of the Hellenic World and/or other appropriate academic and administrative experience. Adequate knowledge of Modern Greek is essential. Further details from www.jobs.ac.uk/jobfiles/ZB379.html
English Heritage, Regional Policy Officer based in York
£23,740 per annum; closing date 12 July 2006, interview date 26 July 2006
Supporting the Planning and Development Regional Director and the Regional Management Team for Yorkshire and the Humber, you will organise and support them in policy development and engagement with the key historic environment partners and stakeholders. As the central point for all regional management information, you will establish and maintain internal and external contacts, research, collate and present information with recommendations, and brief outside organisations on regional matters. In particular, you will be responsible for preparing and monitoring regional publications such as Heritage Counts. In addition, you will prepare articles and speeches for the Regional Director, facilitate the internal policy group and co-ordinate the Yorkshire Historic Environment Forum. For an application pack, please email firstname.lastname@example.org quoting reference C/012/06
English Heritage, Historic Buildings and Areas Adviser based in York
£28,200 to £31,500 per annum pro rata, 18 to 29 hours per week; closing date
12 July 2006, interview date 20 July 2006
You will provide advice on the development of listed buildings and conservation areas and the rescue of buildings at risk. For an application pack, please email email@example.com quoting reference C/013/06.