This video was created by University of Bristol students.
Plus, thanks to BAJR for gifting us with a cake fund to thank the community participants!
This video was created by University of Bristol students.
Plus, thanks to BAJR for gifting us with a cake fund to thank the community participants!
On the first day of the season, Bristol students went door to door around the town of Berkeley to post dig-related information through letterboxes, including information to email regarding the Town Museum project. We received some responses, but it was only when our students went door-to-door around the community and chatted with people that we achieved a larger response. After just one day, twenty locals signed up formally to the project. The community responded enthusiastically to the opportunity and were eager to get involved. They loved the idea of becoming temporary curators of their own past, hosting artefacts and archaeological information in their windows. And it’s not just private residences that are getting into the project – a range of businesses have signed up too!
For me, it is also about trust. The community trusting that we have the best intentions to work with them and that we actively want to include them. The University trusting our students to work with our principle heritage stakeholder, Berkeley Castle. The academics trusting the students to produce a good exhibition. And us trusting the community to take care of the artefacts. Community is built on trust and we want to foster a sense of community and genuine collaboration. As an academic institution, we have an obligation to share and communicate our research with the public – what better way to than to place them at the centre of it, physically!
“Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.” ― Stephen R. Covey
In preparation for the project, students on the engagement team have individually number labelled each find that will go on display, over 250 finds in total!The labelling process is time consuming but ensures that finds won’t get lost or incorrectly re-catalogued. Students are placing finds in small collections on coloured pieces of paper in normal finds trays (essentially garden supply seed trays). The collections showcase the variation within the archaeological assemblage over multiple periods of occupation at Berkeley. Students are also designing information sheets that will be displayed alongside the finds.
Second-year student Alice says:
“The project is a good idea. If we are trying to get the actual community involved then introducing them to artefacts is the best way to do it. For me, it’s been an interesting look into the artefacts that we’ve taken from Berkeley and having to categorise bones and such, I get to practice my identification skills. Putting them together in a way that can be displayed in an aesthetically pleasing way is a little challenging. Plus, getting the experience of co-designing an exhibition gives me really useful museum skills.”
Another second- year, Rebecca, is the mini-project student leader for this work and says:
“It’s showing me how much variety there is in archaeology and how much archaeology and anthropology intersect. In terms of skills, I feel way more confident handling artefacts and a lot more comfortable with archaeology as a process. Also organisation skills, having a goal and sticking to it no matter what!”
All stakeholders take something positive away from the experience. In a teaching respect, this type of skills building and improved confidence is crucial for our students. Berkeley Castle facilitate better community relations and share their history. And the University gets to take its research knowledge into a public and highly accessible setting. The community who host the displays get the chance to be keepers of history and share artefact handling sessions, while those not directly involved get to walk around the town and benefit from the displays. An ambiance of archaeology is created alongside the excavation at the castle.
As I write, the project is underway and we plan to bring the completed trays to the community next week. We’ll photograph and number the trays for our records before they go to each house. The participants will also sign a short agreement with us to take care of the objects.
This project could be a really great model for other University excavations, or even longer term commercial work – so keep checking back for more updates as we go!
Contact: Aisling Tierney firstname.lastname@example.org
The Berkeley Castle Project (BCP) began in 2005 and set out to excavate and explore the archaeology of Berkeley Town, Gloucestershire.The annual excavations are tied to the formal curriculum. Within the BCP sits the “Engagement Team”, which students can elect to join, and which I manage in parallel to excavations. Engagement is fundamentally embedded within research, and teaching and learning efforts of the Department. Over the past three years, engagement efforts have placed students at the heart of community and public engagement, through free tours, artefact handling sessions, social media, etc.Students take their knowledge of archaeological research and hands-on fieldwork experience at Berkeley Castle, combined with their classroom learning, and transform it into a tangible engagement output. This is an excellent example of research-led teaching taken into engagement activity. The Town Museum Project is one of the many ‘mini projects’ co-run by students.
The Town Museum project
The aims of the project were:
The objectives were:
Regarding the stakeholders:
Students are drawn from all levels, including first, second, and third year, and masters students. This provides an excellent opportunity for students to learn from each others, regardless of academic level. Of great importance is the chance for students at all levels to develop practical real-world skills.
Contact: Aisling Tierney email@example.com
One of our students used specialist skills to develop a 3D model of one of the excavated buildings!
Engagement embedded within teaching
Day 3 – Amberley to Upper Beeding, 14 Miles
Sonnet V. To The South Downs – Charlotte Smith
The Silvery Tide (tune), John Searle, Amberley, Lucy Broadwood, 1901, http://www.vwml.org/record/LEB/2/29/5
The Silvery Tide (lyrics), John Searle, Amberley, Lucy Broadwood, 1901, http://www.vwml.org/record/LEB/2/31
Silver Tide, Mrs Moseley, Treyford, Clive Carey, 1912 http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/159
The Old or Rich Merchant (lyrics), Walter Searle, Amberley, Lucy Broadwood, 1901, http://www.vwml.org/record/LEB/2/32
The Old or Rich Merchant (tune), Walter Searle, Amberley, Lucy Broadwood, 1901, http://www.vwml.org/record/LEB/2/29/8
Young Jockey (lyrics), Mrs Humphrey (given here as Mr Humphrey), Storrington (Sullington), Dorothy Marshall, 1912 http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/291
Young Johnny (tune), Thomas Bulbeck, Harting, G.B Gardiner/John F Guyer, 1909, http://www.vwml.org/record/RoudFS/S270976
The Merchant, Harvey Humphrey, Storrington (Sullington) Clive Carey/Dorothy Marshall, 1912 http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/284
The Seasons Of The Year, John Burberry, Lyne (Sussex), Lucy Broadwood, 1892, http://www.vwml.org/record/RoudFS/S160555
South Downs Yarn http://www.southdownsyarn.co.uk/
Benjamin Hoare, father of John (I believe) http://pubshistory.com/SussexPubs/Pulborough/WhiteHorseBury.shtml http://www.familytreedesigns.co.uk/Angmering/Houghton%201891.htm
The Ones That Got Away:
Spanish Ladies, Mr Cooper, Washington, George Butterworth and Francis Jekyll, 1907
All Round My Hat, Edmund Knight, Washington, George Butterworth, 1907
Our Captain Calls, Seeds of Love, Mrs Golds, Washington, George Butterworth, 1907
Jack Of The Game, Mrs Golds, Washington, George Butterworth, 1907
Down In Our Village, Black Velvet Band, Just As The Tide Was Flowing, Mr Standing, Washington, George Butterworth and Francis Jekyll, 1907
from all the dark who wings his why
and sings an if
of day to yes
(listen) – e.e. cummings
this a dog barks and
how crazily houses
eyes people smiles
steeples are eagerly
ing through wonder
– look –
,come quickly come
with me now
sing)for it’s Spring
earth sky trees
where a miracle arrives
you and I may not
hurry it with
a thousand poems
but nobody will stop it
With All the Policemen In The World
A – Maying (Heyshott)
Oh my daddy has gone to the market a mile and my mammy she’s minding the mill all the while.
In comes my dear Johnny and this he was saying, go with me my Betsy and we’ll go a-maying
Oh no dearest Johnny it’s a folly to ask for my mammy’s a spinning she’s set me a task,
Says he cut the tyre let the cows go a-staying, for the time will go sweetly while we go a-maying
My daddy he asked oh where had I been? My mammy she told him I’d the cows to fetch in.
My mammy she said somewhere I’d been a-playing, but she never had no thoughts that I’d been a-maying
If my Johnny proves true, which I hope that he will. Then we will get married and honour the mill.
My daddy and mammy we will leave them a-staying, for the time went so sweetly while we were a-maying.
David Miles / 12 Nov 1912 / Heyshott / Dorothy Marshall http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/319
The Bee Worsle, Duncton http://www.vwml.org/record/CJS2/9/76
The Apple Worsle, Duncton http://www.vwml.org/record/CJS2/9/77
Day 1 South Harting to Cocking, 7 miles
‘… And they must be the footsteps of our own ancestors who made the whole landscape by hand and left their handprints on everything and trod every foot of it, and its present shapes are their footprints, those ancestors whose names were on the stones in the churchyard and many whose names weren’t. And the tales of them and of men living I would take with me and the songs in my mind as if everything I thought and felt had to be set in words and music – everything that was true in me” – From To Live Like A Man, by F C Ball (Given me to with kind permission by his relative Shirley Collins).
‘ … And that we shall go singing to the fashioning of a new world’ – The Envoi, Woodcraft Folk
The Full English The Full English was a major national digitisation and education project celebrating England’s cultural heritage through traditional folk songs, dances and customs. The project brought together the most important archival collections of folk material, held in numerous libraries and archives around the UK, and made them freely accessible through a single online digital archive. The material was drawn from Victorian and Edwardian folk collectors such as Ralph Vaughan Williams, Lucy Broadwood and Cecil Sharp, and includes manuscripts of notated songs, dances, and tunes, printed broadsides, lectures, notes and correspondence. These items were conserved, digitised, and catalogued before being uploaded to a central digital archive accessible through the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library website. Alongside our exisiting digitised collections, catalogues and indexes, the site now provides the largest, most comprehensive, searchable, database of English folk songs, dances, tunes, and customs in the world, with over 80,000 digitised items from 19 seminal collections. It is rich in social, family and local history and provides a snapshot of England’s cultural heritage through voices rarely published and heard before. Aims Promote the Study and Practice of the Folk Arts EFDSS’s mission statement includes “To promote, preserve and develop the folk arts”. Through providing this information in an easily accessible way, we hoped it would lead to an increase in the study and practice of the folk arts Folk is an unusual genre in that it is based in heritage. By providing access to this material, it instantly creates a wealth of material for singers, musicians, and dancers to add to their repertoires. We’ve been able to put the original MSS material online. As compared with published works which have been selected and edited, these collections are relatively unmediated. Therefore it provides an accurate look into what exactly “the folk” were doing. Access
Digital surrogates of original manuscript material hosted on the VWML website – has a world-wide reach (where internet provision exists). Library users no longer have to travel to London to access materials, but can do so from the comfort of their own homes or singarounds, at any time of day or night. To make access even easier, we have started a programme of transcriptions of the text and music from manuscript material, which allows for full-text searching.
From experience of how library users had wanted to access material in the past, we used this information to dictate how we catalogued and indexed the materials. E.g., performer’s names, where the information was collected; whether manuscripts contain text, music, or both; Alternate titles, etc.
Options to sort results by ref no., place, performer, collector, and relevance. Options to browse material visually by collection, or geographically through a map function. Preservation of original manuscripts If fewer people need physical access to the originals, then the strain on them is lessened. Conversely, it also means that awareness of the material is heightened and serious researches are still keen to view the original documents!
Lady Maisry, Thomas Bulbeck http://www.vwml.org/record/GG/1/21/1379
Unquiet Grave, Helen Boniface http://www.vwml.org/record/GG/1/21/1390
A Farmer there lived in the North Country, Frank Hutt http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/339
Mother, Mother Make my Bed, Mrs Ford http://www.vwml.org/record/AGG/8/48
Barbara Ellen, Mrs Moseley http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/161
How Cold The Wind, George Tilson http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/271
Unquiet Grave, Mrs Stemp http://www.vwml.org/record/CC/1/83
The One’s That Got Away:
Thomas Bulbeck, Harting: The Highway Man Outwitted, Bushes and Briars, When First Apprenticed, The Nobleman’s Wedding, Deep in Love, Cupid the Pretty Ploughboy, Come all you Worthy People, The Golden Vanity, The Mermaid, You Seaman Bold.
Mrs Moseley, Treyford: The Drunkard’s Child, The Sailor’s Grave, The Golden Glove, Sheffield Park, Will of the Waggon Train, Now tell me Mary how it is, A Fair Maid in the Garden, The Blind Beggar’s Daughter, The Turkish Lady.
Mr Carpenter, Elsted: The Sun is Just A-Peeping Over the Hills, Master’s Health, Come All you Worthy People That Dwell Within the Land, Both Sexes Give Ear to My Fancy, The Irish Recruit, Merry Boys Merry, The Smuggler’s Boy, The Miller’s Dog.
George Tilson: Pretty Susan the Pride of Kildare, Hunt the Squirrel, On the Banks of the Sweet Dundee, General Woolf, The Bonny Bunch of Roses, The Princess Royal.
https://mainlynorfolk.info/steeleye.span/songs/thewifeofusherswell.html (The Wife of Ushers Well, sung by Gerald Moore)
https://mainlynorfolk.info/watersons/songs/thebrisklad.html (The Sheep Stealer, sung by Diane Ruinet) http://www.vwml.org/record/RoudFS/S160890
The main aim of my visit to Bristol Wood Recycling Project was to talk to people about archaeology. Specifically, what I wanted to do was to find out why people were making use of the BWRP and what they were doing with the materials they left with. I’ve always found that these simple conversations lead into discussion of wider issues. Archaeology is good at working on different scales at the same time, looking both at objects and at the wider-world systems they are part of. So are regular people.
The person I spoke to most was Kaleb, in charge on the day I visited. I’ll come back to my conversation with him on Friday.
What I noticed really clearly about the place is that a very large proportion of the custom came from young couples. BWRP is obviously playing a part in people kitting out their first homes, itself a really important thing. I didn’t talk to any of them though, I focussed on the people who looked like they knew what they were doing, I wouldn’t want to put off anyone unsure of their DIY needs and skills!
The first person I chatted to was with Kaleb when I arrived. He was doing something fairly straightforward, taking a piece of plywood to turn into a tool shelf for the back of his van. A small job, for sure, but a small example of the interdependence of projects of this kind and independent businesses. One of the main attractions is that it’s cheaper of course, but the person in question was also keen to support the BWRP and its wider aims (see yesterday).
The next person I chatted to was Ben, who I found taking wooden pallets apart.
Ben is a long-term customer of BWRP and used local reclamation yards as well before they closed. I chatted to Ben about the kinds of things he has made with wood from the BWRP (see below), of which there are quite a lot. He told me that he has always worked from a philosophy of fixing rather than replacing things, more for practical reasons than because of any green philosophy. In one sense, what we can see in these regular, very practically-minded regular customers is one of the ways in which people work hard to inhabit individually the world as constrained by politics, economics and more. Yet Ben was also clearly aware of the environmental and social issues at the heart of the BWRPs aims – and the fact that people can do something about them – so he is certainly an important part of enacting that wider network. Here are some of the things he’s made (thanks for the photos and permission to post them, Ben).
Shortly before I left, I talked with Sarah, who I overheard saying she was looking for wood for an art project. It turned out that a friend was being very productive in some DIY that day so she had decided to join in and make a table. She had come to the BWRP having seen it when walking past walking dogs. Her plan was to get an old cupboard door and fill the recessed centre with pebbles and resin. Discussing the archaeological take on BWRP, we moved onto a discussion about precarity in the city, Sarah being a post-doc researcher in a university department where she works in a room full of other researchers all on two-month contracts. I wonder whether the BWRP is also useful as a kind of therapy for people who need to do something practical to take their minds off wider issues.
So, these are some of the people of the BWRP, people who took time out of their DIY Saturdays to let me stand and talk about archaeology with them for a bit. I’m grateful to all of them for letting me disturb them.
I’ll draw out a bit more of what this all means for public archaeology (and urban archaeology in general) on Friday.
Waysinging: Come Ye All
*‘A walk is only a step away from a story, and every path tells’
For the first week of May I’m off the walk the Sussex stretch of the South Downs Way, along the route I’ll be singing songs that are collected from, or associated with, the places I pass. I’m using my preview post to give details of the walk for any one interested in joining. The best way to let me know if you’re coming along is email firstname.lastname@example.org. How you would like to get involved is entirely up to you – you can come just to keep me company, get me to teach you bits of the songs, walk with me for an hour, meet me at the pub …
Each day will then be made into a podcast available on this site, and I hope very much that people will comment and discuss underneath the posts. I’ll almost certainly say something that people want to debate, they’ll be other versions of the songs people know, they’ll be other walks I could have attempted, they’ll be a chorus of voices; I’m only one. This is exactly as it should be. With that in mind here are a few of my research questions that will act as a backdrop to my journey:
I would imagine with stopping to sing I’ll be averaging about 2 miles an hour, below are key points of the walks.
South Harting to Cocking , 7.5 miles, 30th April
1pm – The Warren Car Park, Harting
Forty Acre Lane, Two Beech Gate, Pen Hill, Buriton Farm, Devil’s Jump, Didling Hill, Cocking Down, Cocking Hill
5pm – The Bluebell Inn, Cocking
Cocking to Amberley, 12 miles, 1st May
10am – The Bluebell Inn Cocking
Heyshott Down, Littleton Down, Scotcher’s Bottom, Stane Street, Bignor Hill, Westburton Hill, Bury hill, Houghton.
5pm – The Sportsman Inn Amberley
Amberley to Adur, 13 miles, 2nd May
10am – The Sportsman Inn Amberley
Springhead Hill, Kithurst Hill, Sullington Hill, Washington, Chanctonbury Ring, Steyning Bowl, River Adur.
6pm – Upper Beedimg, tbc.
River Adur to Rodmell, 16 miles, 3rd May
8am – Upper Beeding, tbc
Beeding Hill, Truleigh Hill, Fulking Hill, Devil’s Dyke, Saddlescombe, West Hill, Pyecombe, Keymer post, Ditchling Beacon. Plumpton, Black Cap, Mount Harry, Lewes
Train from Lewes to Southease
6pm – Abergavenny Arms, Rodmell, Brighton Vox Choir sing
Rodmell to Alfriston, 11 miles, 4th May
*sunrise on Kingston Hill
11pm – Monks House Rodmell
Southease, Itford Hill, Beddingham Hill, Firle Beacon, Alciston, Bostal Hill
5pm – The George Alfriston
Alfriston to Eastbourne, 10 miles, 5th May
10am – The George Alfriston
Littlington, Windover, Cuckmere River, Charleston Manor, West Dean, East Dean, Seven Sisters, Birling Gap, Beachy Head.
3pm Eastbourne Beach Promenade
*MacFarlane, R (2012). The Old Ways. London: Penguin pp. 17 – 18
After a month of collaborative mapping a new map of Orkney has been created. By thinking big, Map Orkney Month seems to have captured people’s imagination. Our map looks like Orkney, however it is far removed from the Ordnance Survey and the tourist trail of Neolithic World Heritage Sites, brochs and bird watching. Our map is an unfamiliar Orkney, revealed through the experience and creativity of its inhabitants.
Mapping was undertaken on all the main permanently inhabited islands in the archipelago, and on most days during March, often with multiple contributions per day. All the main modes of transport were included: plane, ferry, rowing boat, bus, car, push bike and walking. The imaginary and psycho-archaeological contributions from within Orkney following the journeys of photographer Gunnie Moberg, and Elsewhere including East London, Bergen – Norway, and Wei Ha Wei – China, added another level, blurring the distinctions between past and present, real and imaginary.
Despite what many initially thought, however, it was not necessarily about covering ground, charting large areas or recording what we already know. The emphasis (from my point of view at any rate) was on everyday journeys, less familiar places, stories and creating heritage sites through enacting or choreographing the project. The only loose instructions were to record journeys for a single day within March using a handheld GPS or smart phone, and record one site of significance.
Participants took this how they wished (I did not ask them what they were planning nor dictate the outcome), with some recording part of the day or a short walk, some recording numerous sites, and others keen to show the highlights of and map their island. Some took recording everyday journeys literally and stuck to their normal routine, others chose a day that they knew something different was happening, and some undertook choreographed mini-projects. Media included GPS, smart phones, tablets, text, photos, sound and video. The diversity of contributions is bound by a collective creativity and thoughtfulness which has naturally gravitated towards what could be termed Creative Archaeology. In terms of archaeological theory, MoM is about exploring an archaeology of surface survey (as opposed to the usual trope of excavation and the depth metaphor), archaeologies in and of the present (Harrison 2010) and the idea that Contemporary Archaeology has the potential to find new forms of practice (Dixon 2009). Moreover, it exposes the idea that, ultimately, archaeology is about the telling of stories (Sarah May pers comm). In the context of Public Archaeology 2015, this was achieved through collaboration and multi-vocal mapping – a county wide archaeological walkover survey – with the ‘public’ taking the lead (a public that also includes archaeologists).
For me, the most powerful experience of the project was giving away the control; posting out the technical equipment and basic know-how, not asking what participants were planning, and waiting for the results to be posted back and emailed. The results from this brand of public archaeology were experimental and unexpected. Many thanks to all of the participants, without whom there would have been no project, to the Pier Arts Centre and Grooves Records for hosting the two weekend workshops and to James Dixon for creating Public Archaeology 2015.
The intention is still to produce an A3 leaflet with the new map detailing journeys, sites and photographs. These could be coded and the sites listed with coordinates on the back. Although slightly abstract, the leaflet will provide the potential, and perhaps inspiration, for people to go and find some of these places. Originally, I wanted to complete this within the month, but this was not possible as MoM became rather epic. I plan to work on this in the next few weeks. I’m also going to get feedback from participants about their experience, how they found the idea of mapping with a GPS, what they learnt and why they mapped where they did. One participant has already said ‘you are changing the way people think about space, which is really hard to do, and really good’. Much to reflect upon.
Lastly, I did make a small contribution on the first day, but thought I’d leave it until last…
Dan Lee: Stromness – Kirkwall 01/03/15
In the spirit of Public Archaeology 2015, which encompasses 12 month long projects throughout the UK, I wanted my contribution to somehow connect Orkney with other places and reflect this wider collaboration and engagement. As such, after travelling by car from Stromness to Kirkwall, a journey which I do every day, and going swimming with my daughter, we drove to the top of Wideford Hill. This very windy 225m summit hosts numerous telecommunication masts and dishes which connect Orkney with the wider world.
Also, I knew there was a topograph – a metal plate showing the relative distances to other places – erected there by the Kirkwall Rotary Club in 1968. A juxtaposition of places compressed into a single monument:
Duncansby Head 24m
In recording this site, I wanted to link together these places (and people) across the UK and Orkney physically and electronically, using satellites circulating in Mid Earth Orbit via my small GPS receiver. Later in the evening, I went for a walk up Brinkie’s Brae, a small granite hill behind Stromness with clear views to the north, to try and see the aurora (nearly 50% probability according to SpaceWeather.com), and caught a faint glimpse of green in the northern sky, linking MoM (spatially and materially) with other northern latitudes and electromagnetic storms from the sun catching the Earth’s upper atmosphere.
The Land of the Summer People (2014- ongoing) is an art-science research collaboration between the artist Seila Fernández Arconada and Prof Thorsten Wagener of the Water and Environmental Engineering Research group at the University of Bristol, UK
Project blog for Dan Lee and Antonia Thomas
The Archaeological Eye
Our collaboration wishes to construct an active approach to ruins in non-urban environments. Over the winter, spring, summer and fall 2015, we will focus our attention on a serie of wartime architectural remains in the surroundings of London, in the Thames estuary and along the East coast of Britain. Access, function and the traces of human activity, are central to our project. Lia Wei is an art historian and archaeologist, focusing on epigraphy and rock-cut architecture. She was brought to academic research through the practice of calligraphy, landscape painting and seal carving in China. Rupert Griffiths is a cultural geographer whose work focuses upon marginal urban landscapes. He came to geography through a background in architecture and as a practicing artist, creating trajectories between built form, materiality, landscape and identity.
Public Archaeology and Heritage
Posts about theatre for young children and outdoor creativity for all ages
News on the best uses of Heritage for social and organisational change
illicit antiquities trading in economic crisis, organised crime and political violence