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http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-wiltshire-10684042

Marden Henge dig uncovers 4,500-year-old dwelling

19 July 2010

Last updated at 14:22

 

A dwelling, thought to be 4,500 years old, has been discovered by archaeologists in Wiltshire.

 

Excavation work at the prehistoric site of Marden Henge, near Devizes, started three weeks ago and experts say the find has "exceeded expectations".

 

Marden Henge no longer has any standing stones and is said to be one of Britain's least understood ancient sites.

 

The work is scheduled to last for three more weeks.

 

Archaeologist Jim Leary, from English Heritage, said: "It's absolutely fabulous. It's exceeded all of our expectations.

 

"We have some wonderful finds coming up and some very fresh looking flint flakes and some pieces of pottery, but far and away the most exciting find so far is over in trench C.

 

"It looks as if we have a Neolithic building. We're talking about four and a half thousand years old - so about 2400 or 2500BC.

 

"Up until a few years ago it would have been unique but a couple of years ago archaeologists were digging at Durrington Walls and they found a number of these buildings.

 

"I don't think we're looking at a normal house. I think we're looking at something equivalent to a priest's quarters.

 

"We do seem to have a hearth and it seems that whoever lived there was a very clean person and regularly cleaned out the hearth.

 

"Just outside the front door we can see this long spread of charcoal and general rubbish material.

 

"It contains really good fresh flint flakes, pottery, bone pins - things that don't normally survive on archaeological sites. We're getting a really good insight into life in that building."

 

http://www.physorg.com/news198495505.html

Cambridgeshire Quarry throws up 4,500-year-old find

July 16, 2010  (PhysOrg.com)

 

A remarkable piece of Neolithic rock art, unlike anything previously found in Eastern England, has been unearthed in the Cambridgeshire village of Over.

The hand-sized artefact, which could date back to 2,500 BC, was found by a participant in a geological weekend course which was being run by the University of Cambridge's Institute for Continuing Education.

It consists of a hand-sized slab of weathered sandstone with two pairs of concentric circles etched into the surface - a motif which, according to archaeologists, is typical of "Grooved Ware" art from the later Neolithic era.

While examples of similar Grooved Ware art have been discovered at sites elsewhere in the UK, this is the first time that any such find has been encountered in Eastern England, which may provide more information about the connections of the communities who inhabited the area 4,500 years ago.

The motives of whoever created the design are unclear. Researchers say that it could represent the ornamental efforts of a Prehistoric Picasso, but may just as easily have been an aimless inscription.

"It really is a fantastic find; certainly we have had nothing like it from any of our sites before," Dr. Chris Evans, Director of the Cambridge Archaeological Unit, which operates out of the Department of Archaeology at the University of Cambridge, said.

"In fact, it's unique in Eastern England, with the nearest comparable example being the similar scratch patterns on a sandstone plaque from a Grooved Ware site in Leicestershire. Otherwise you would have to look to Wessex or Northern Britain and the much more formal Megalithic Art of the period."

"The big question in the case of the Over stone is whether we should actually be calling it meaningful art, or if it amounted to no more than Neolithic doodling. Either way it's a great find."

The stone will make its first public appearance since the discovery was made this Saturday (July 17th), when it will go on display at Over Village Carnival.

It was found by Susie Sinclair, who was taking part in the weekend course led by Dr Peter Sheldon (from the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, The Open University) at Hanson Aggregates' Needingworth Quarry. The quarry lies north and west of Over alongside the River Great Ouse.

The Cambridge Archaeological Unit has been excavating sites within the quarry for 15 years, partly in an effort to better understand the shape and nature of the landscape in prehistoric times. The remains of several settlement clusters from the late Neolithic period have already been found.

The Over stone, however, was hidden in the quarry's spoil, one of the heaps of waste geological materials discarded by quarry workers. Researchers believe it had been deposited within one of the river's ancient palaeochannels crossing the area and that, with the existing information they have about the geographical layout of the region, the point where it was found can be reconstructed with relative ease.

The area around Over and the River Great Ouse would have looked dramatically different 4,500 years ago. Huge, "S" shaped bends from the river originally meandered across the fens and efforts to tame them only really began in earnest in the late medieval period.

According to the latest research, at the time the Over stone was being carved, the countryside would have been dominated by the snaking course of the river, its tributary channels and flooding. This would essentially have broken the area up into a delta-like landscape of small islands, channels and marshlands.

More information: Further information about the Cambridge Archaeological Unit and its work in the area can be found at: http://www-cau.arch.cam.ac.uk/

 

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/7894635/Worlds-oldest-doodle-found-on-rock.html

World's oldest doodle found on rock

Published: 7:30AM BST 17 Jul 2010

 

The carving is believed to be one of the oldest doodles in the world Photo: MASONS

Cambridge University experts believe the crudely etched circles are the Neolithic version of a modern office worker's scribbles on a post-it note.

 

The 6.6in (17cm) chunk of sandstone was discovered by an amateur archaeologist from the bottom of a deep quarry in Over, Cambs., during a university fun day.

 

Christopher Evans, director of the university's Archaeological Unit, thinks the concentric circles were created by one of our early ancestors ''killing time'' as opposed to a work of art.

Mr Evans said: ''I think it was a doodle. I don't think it has any deep and meaningful religious significance.

''In this era of the Neolithic period they had a lot of time on their hands. It could show they were quite bored at times, but we don't know for sure.

''We do know when they weren't out harvesting or planting crops they had to find a way of killing time.

''There are Megalithic tombs with concentric circles like this carved into stones - the circles are a form of Megalithic art and typical of the grooved ware pottery of the time.

''They liked to use the concentric circle but we don't know why, it may have been some kind of way to express their world view.

''Although I don't believe they had a concept of art, these types of circles were used as a form of decoration.''

The rock was discovered by business language teacher Susie Sinclair, 48, at Needingworth Quarry, alongside the River Great Ouse, near Over, on Saturday July 3.

Ms Sinclair was on a geological weekend course being run by the University of Cambridge's Institute for Continuing Education.

She said she was ''delighted'' to discover the work by a Neolithic caveman, made at the time the pyramids were being built.

She said: ''I had not found many fossils when this rock caught my eye.

''It was just resting against a pile of rocks and the sun was shining onto these two circles. I thought it was a fossilised worm.

''I picked it up and showed it to our course leader Dr Peter Sheldon who realised it was more significant than a fossilised worm.

''He took a photo and sent it to Christopher Evans and the director of Stonehenge and that is when we realised it was serious.

''I'm an accidental archaeologist so I didn't know what it was. It's really quite a beautiful object and amazing to think someone did this 4,500 years ago.

''Everyone who has seen it has interpreted it differently. It's a talking point whether it's a piece of art or a meaningless doodle.

''Some people think it is a pair of eyes or a map. I think it's more than just a doodle and I hope one day we'll find out.''

Historians agree concentric circle "Grooved Ware" art has been found on pottery in other areas of the country, but never encountered in Eastern England before.

The stone will make its first public appearance since it was discovered at the Over Village Carnival today(SAT).

The remains of several prehistoric villages have been discovered in recent years in areas surrounding Over.

According to the latest research at the time the Over Stone was being carved, the countryside was dominated by the snaking River Ouse which broke up the area into a delta-like landscape of small islands, channels and marshlands.

 

http://news.scotsman.com/scotland/A-second-Venus-found-in.6426346.jp

A second Venus found in Orkney as archaeologists create history

Published Date: 19 July 2010

By Jenny Fyall

 

A PARTNER has been found for a rare 4,500-year-old Neolithic figurine discovered at an archaeological dig site on a remote Scottish island.

 

The second carved figure was unearthed just 100 feet from the spot in Westray, Orkney, where the artefact dubbed the Orkney Venus was found last year.

 

The new figurine is headless and made of fired clay rather than sandstone. But archaeologists say it bears a striking resemblance to the original.

 

The Orkney Venus was the earliest carving of a human figure found in Scotland.

 

It is believed both date back to 2,600 BC, when a Neolithic village existed at the dig site at the Links of Noltland in Westray.

 

Experts believe the figurines could have been depictions of deities, and the discovery of a second adds weight to the theory that they could have been kept in the home by our early ancestors.

 

The latest find was discovered outside the excavated ruins of a Neolithic house. Two pieces were discovered, which have been glued together by specialists.

 

Without its head it stands just one and a half inches tall.

 

A thumb-shaped indentation at the top of the body shows where the head had been attached.

 

Clay balls found near the spot could have been used as heads for the figurines, archaeologists believe.

 

The second figurine has more distinct carvings than the original, probably made by a sharp bone point.

 

A square carving on the front, possibly depicting a tunic, is divided into triangles. A centrally punched hole could represent the figure's belly button.

 

It was found by archaeologist Sean Rice, working for Historic Scotland's contractor EASE Archaeology.

 

Peter Yeoman, head of cultural resources at Historic Scotland, said: "It's difficult to speculate on the precise function or meaning of these figurines.

 

"They could even be children's toys."

 

However, he said similar findings in other European countries are generally recognised as images of deities, including some "well-endowed" female figurines that were clearly fertility objects.

 

"This being the case, the figurines start to allow us to consider the spiritual life of the Nortland families more than 4,000 years ago, possibly with the earliest evidence we have of worship being channelled through physical representations of spirits or gods," he said.

 

Until now, he said, it had only been known that our early ancestors in Scotland had worshipped deities at major monuments.

 

"This suggests perhaps they did not just represent their belief system on the grand scale, but also they had them in the home," he said.

 

Today the exposed spot has been damaged by wind erosion, putting its archaeological heritage at risk of being destroyed.

 

http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2010/jul/16/egyptian-god-relic-identified-silchester

Relic of Harpocrates, the god of secrecy and silence, found at Silchester

Archaeological dig at abandoned Roman city in Hampshire yields earliest representation of an Egyptian deity found in Britain

Maev Kennedy, guardian.co.uk,

Friday 16 July 2010 14.06 BST

 

A battered and corroded thumb-sized piece of bronze has turned out to be a unique find, the earliest representation of an Egyptian deity from any site in Britain – and appropriately, after almost 2,000 years hidden in the ground, it is Harpocrates, the god of secrecy and silence.

 

The little figure was found at Silchester, site of an abandoned Roman city in Hampshire, in last summer's excavation, but his identity was only revealed in months of careful conservation work. His Greek and Roman designation as Harpocrates, the god of spymasters, is actually a transcription error.

 

"In Egyptian mythology the figure is known as Horus, the child of Isis and Osiris," said Professor Mike Fulford of the University of Reading, director of the Silchester excavation. "He is often shown with his finger in his mouth, a gesture that in Egypt represented the hieroglyph for his name, but was misinterpreted by the Greeks and Romans, resulting in his adoption as the god of silence and secrecy."

 

He was originally an ornament on an object, which is itself unique. "The figurine was attached to part of a charcoal-burning brazier which would have been used to provide heating and lighting. This brazier is the only one found in England so we are doubly excited," Fulford said. "The brazier, the sort of thing you would expect to find in Pompeii, is the first evidence of such a luxurious item from Roman Britain."

 

The context of the find suggests the brazier was imported, and later thrown out into a rubbish pit, in the first century AD.

 

Silchester is one of the most enigmatic Roman sites: after it was abandoned in the 7th century, with houses tumbled and the wells filled in, it was never reoccupied. A medieval abbey and manor farm clipped only a corner of the site; today, it remains open farmland surrounded by spectacular ruined Roman walls, still 20ft high in places.

 

Fulford has been digging at Silchester for half a lifetime and now returns every summer for training digs with his students and volunteers from all over the world. They are gradually peeling back the layers of an extraordinary history.

 

He now believes it was an iron age city of up to 10,000 people, the oldest and largest in Britain, built on the regular grid pattern which historians had believed arrived with the Romans. The evidence suggests Silchester never regained its wealth and power after the Roman invasion, and may have been burned to the ground and rebuilt in the Boudiccan rebellion of 60AD.

 

Among its puzzles are the dog skeletons which turned up all over the site, one found carefully buried standing upright, still on guard after 2,000 years. Other skeletons show cut marks from flaying, suggesting the inhabitants had a flourishing craft industry of making puppy-fur cloaks.

 

Harpocrates will be returning to his home of the last two millennia this weekend: he will be on display at Silchester as the site opens to visitors on Saturday and Sunday – complete with Roman legionaries, the Legio Secunda Augusta, who will be pitching their tents beside the site and breaking the tedium of camp chores with a little light gladiatorial combat.

 

Open days at Silchester mark the start of the Festival of British Archaeology, the largest event of its kind in the world. Over the next fortnight, hundreds of historic sites, excavations, archaeology stores and museums will welcomethe public, with events including re-enactments, lectures and a chance to try skills, from flint knapping to dowsing.

 

http://www.thisislincolnshire.co.uk/news/Archaeologists-discover-late-Roman-cemetery-derelict-pub/article-2400581-detail/article.html

Archaeologists discover late-Roman cemetery at site of derelict pub

Saturday, July 10, 2010, 07:00

 

ARCHAEOLOGISTS have found what is thought to be a late-Roman cemetery in a county village.

 

So far, a total of 46 human remains have been excavated and archaeologists say they expect to have found more than 50 by the time they finish next week.

 

The discovery was made during a five-week dig taking place as part of the development of a derelict pub in Caistor, near Market Rasen.

 

Specialists from Pre Construct Archaeological Services Ltd, say the cemetery is the first of its kind to be discovered in the area, branding the find as "significant".

 

Director of the firm Colin Palmer-Brown said: "The graves are orientated from east to west, with the heads to the west which fits well with Christian tradition. There is an absence of grave goods, such as brooches or accessories, which is also consistent with Christian burials.

 

"Burial traditions change over time and the fact that these appear to be Christian suggests this cemetery dates back to the late Roman period, around the fourth century AD after the Emperor Constantine I legalised Christian worship in AD313.

 

"This find is very significant as little was known about Caistor. It isn't near any known Roman road. One theory is that Caistor could have been part of the east coast defences in the late-Roman period and it was a supply base for a garrison."

 

Shards of pottery found alongside the graves – although not left as memorial items – strengthen the case for it being a late-Roman cemetery, said Mr Palmer-Brown.

 

Teams from Pre Construct initially found six sets of human remains during the pre-planning process. That find then led to the discovery of men, women, teenagers, children and babies.

 

Archaeological site manager Fiona Walker said there is evidence that some of the bodies were in coffins. "We can see nails and even the remains of straps in some areas," she said.

 

The former pub is being turned into a Lincolnshire Co-operative food store with a £1.3 million development. Contractors Taylor Pearson started on site in May and the store is set to open in November.

 

Special permission from the Ministry of Justice will allow the human remains to be exhumed, before being privately reburied.

 

They will then be cleaned and examined by Pre-Construct's in-house osteologist, who will determine sex, approximate age and even whether they had suffered from any illness or injury.

 

Staff from Lincolnshire Co-operative say they may create some kind of display to remember the history of the site.

 

Store development manager Matthew Wilkinson said: "It has been fascinating to find out more about the history of the site."

 

http://www.ansa.it/web/notizie/rubriche/english/2010/07/15/visualizza_new.html_1853021458.html

Ancient 'mansio' unearthed in Tuscany

Pliny mentioned the once bustling trading post in his writings

(ANSA) Grosseto, July 15 2010

 

Archaeologists have unearthed the remains of a complex in Tuscany they believe was once a bustling staging post on a major trade route mentioned by the ancient Roman writer Pliny.

 

The building, which runs parallel to the River Ombrone in the Maremma Natural Park, was probably built in around 200 AD and functioned for at least a couple of centuries.

 

The size and layout of the building, as well as its location next to a river and a major Roman road, has led archaeologists to conclude they have probably discovered a well-known 'mansio', or staging post.

 

Pliny and another Roman writer known as 'Anonymous of Ravenna' both referred to the 'Mansio ad Umbronem' ('Staging post on the River Ombrone'), which was located near the Via Aurelia.

 

Mansios were usually stopping places on Roman roads maintained by central government for the use those travelling on official business but the descriptions of the Roman writers suggest this particular site may also have provided additional services. According to Pliny and the anonymous Ravenna writer, the Mansio ad Umbronem' was a key point for the storage and redistribution of goods and material arriving by road and sea, thanks to the nearby port where the Ombrone once flowed into the sea.

 

Lending further support to their theory were the various ceramic, glass and religious artefacts discovered during the course of the excavation. More than 80 coins were discovered, helping date the site, as well as dozens of fragments of metal and ceramic objects from across the entire Mediterranean and, in particular, from Africa. Of particular interest was a votive terracotta statuette representing the bust of the Greek-Egyptian god Serapis.

 

The discovery comes just a year after a similarly important find nearby in another part of the park of a 75-square-metre temple complex dating back to the fourth century AD.

 

Archaeologists believe the two discoveries together are almost certain evidence of Roman settlements along the Tuscan coast that played a key role in linking inland towns with Mediterranean and African ports. The mansio was unearthed as part of an ongoing project to discover sites from the park's ancient past.

 

The project's four directors and four permanent archaeologists will resume work in August on three sites currently under excavation, assisted by 30 students from across Europe.

 

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/38276202/ns/local_news-chicago_il

Archaeologists Discover 1400 Year Old Settlement in Illinois

NBCChicago.com

7/16/2010 8:47:03 AM ET

 

South of Jerseyville, along U.S. Route 67, a team of state archaeologists, students and volunteers excavating about four acres of land has found evidence of a 1,400-year-old Native American settlement. "We have found about 40 pits, some very large storage pits, and one bell-shaped pit that appears to have had hundreds of tons of limestone hauled in and has a flagstone floor," David Nolan, Western Illinois Field Station coordinator for the Illinois State Archaeological Survey, said at the site Tuesday. Working with the Illinois Department of Transportation prior to completion of the section of Corridor 67 south of Jerseyville that eventually will be a four-lane highway from the Quad Cities to Alton, the crews have been toiling to complete their excavations, and are on schedule. The archaeologists believe they have a village dating back to about A.D. 600, as well as archaeological deposits going back 4,000 to 5,000 years; also, on the east side of the highway, the archaeologists are conducting a more current excavation dating to the 1830s or 1840s. "The excavations on the west side are yielding very well-preserved bone fragments, as well as pottery pieces," Nolan said. "It appears this was a large communal village, but may not have been used year-round. Our later analysis of our data will have to tell us that." Some of the pits on the west side excavations are large, some smaller; some are storage pits, and some were trash pits. Two appear to have been kiln pits. To date, archaeologists have not found any evidence of homes, because they haven't discovered any post pits. The large bell-shaped storage pit with the flagstone flooring is shaped such that it easily could have been sealed with a clay plug to keep rodents and other small animals out of the goods stored inside. On the east side excavations, they are finding ample amounts of glass and pottery pieces dating to the 1830s and 1840s. While a much later time period, it is one that is not well-documented archaeologically. At that site, they have found what appears to be an old cistern and an odd, trench-like area that was known more to be a construction method of the French. There is 90 years of archaeological experience among Nolan, Hickson and State Archaeologist Bob Monroe, of Grafton, who was busy at the site on the east side of the highway. "It is rewarding, and it is important to get excavations done, as this site will be gone in a couple months, and a new road will be here," Nolan said. "Then, the real work begins of understanding what the data and artifacts have to teach us about the people that lived here."

 

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/ground-zero-builders-uncover-centuriesold-hull-2027452.html

Ground Zero builders uncover centuries-old hull

From David Usborne

Thursday, 15 July 2010

 

Archaeologists at Ground Zero in lower Manhattan are racing to dig out what appears to be remains of the wooden hull of a stubby 18th century ship that construction crews stumbled upon earlier this week as they prepared foundations for the new World Trade Centre complex.

 

It has been almost 30 years since such a significant remnant of New York’s ocean-going past has been found beneath its pavements. As work continues unabated at the site, archeologists with a firm already hired to document finds of interest there, spearheaded efforts for the hull’s removal to safe ground and more detailed analysis.

 

“We noticed curved timbers that a back hoe brought up,” Molly McDonald of the company, AKRF, said. “We quickly found the rib of a vessel and continued to clear it away and expose the hull over the last two days.”

 

The section measures about 32 feet long and may have been dumped along with other landfill to expand the lower end of Manhattan into what used to be the waters of the Hudson River. In a stroke of luck for the archeologists, the weather in New York since Tuesday has been damp. Had the hull’s ribs been exposed to bright sun they might have started to decompose immediately.

 

A large anchor has also been uncovered, but it’s not clear if belongs to the ship. Digging through layers of mud and oyster shell, they have also found a semi circular steel collar on a brick base that may have been inside the vessel as some kind of oven or primitive steam boiler.

 

The miracle maybe less that the boat remains were down there but that they survived the scoops of the construction machinery. “I kept thinking of how closely it came to being destroyed,” said Michael Pappalardo also of AKRF. Of seeing the ribs for the first time, he said: “They were so perfectly contoured that they were clearly part of a ship.”

 

http://news.discovery.com/history/shipwreck-230-year-old-champagne-discovered.html

DIVERS FIND 230-YEAR-OLD CHAMPAGNE IN BALTIC SHIPWRECK

The consignment of 30 bottles could have been sent by France's King Louis XVI to the Russian Imperial Court.

Sat Jul 17, 2010 02:29 PM ET

Content provided by AFP

 

THE GIST

 

 

Divers have found bottles of champagne some 230 years old on the bottom of the Baltic which a wine expert described Saturday as tasting "fabulous".

 

Thought to be premium brand Veuve Clicquot, the 30 bottles discovered perfectly preserved at a depth of 55 metres (180 feet) could have been in a consignment sent by France's King Louis XVI to the Russian Imperial Court.

 

If confirmed, it would be by far the oldest champagne still drinkable in the world, thanks to the ideal conditions of cold and darkness.

 

"We have contacted (makers) Moet & Chandon and they are 98 percent certain it is Veuve Clicquot," Christian Ekstroem, the head of the diving team, told AFP.

 

"There is an anchor on the cork and they told me they are the only ones to have used this sign," he said, adding that a sample of the champagne has been sent to Moet & Chandon for their analysis.

 

The group of seven Swedish divers made their find on July 6 off the Finnish Aaland island, mid-way between Sweden and Finland, near the remains of a sailing vessel.

 

"Visibility was very bad, hardly a metre," Ekstroem said. "We couldn't find the name of the ship, or the bell, so I brought a bottle up to try to date it."

 

The handmade bottle bore no label, while the cork was marked Juclar, from its origin in Andorra.

 

According to records, Veuve Clicquot was first produced in 1772, but the first bottles were laid down for 10 years.

 

"So it can't be before 1782, and it can't be after 1788-89, when the French Revolution disrupted production," Ekstroem said.

 

Aaland wine expert Ella Gruessner Cromwell-Morgan, whom Ekstroem asked to taste the find, said it had not lost its fizz and was "absolutely fabulous".

 

"I still have a glass in my fridge and keep going back every five minutes to take a breath of it. I have to pinch myself to believe it's real," she said.

 

Cromwell-Morgan described the champagne as dark golden in colour with a very intense aroma.

 

"There's a lot of tobacco, but also grape and white fruits, oak and mead," she said of the wine's "nose".

 

As for the taste, "it's really surprising, very sweet but still with some acidity," the expert added, explaining that champagne of that period was much less dry than today and the fermentation process less controllable.

 

"One strong supposition is that it's part of a consignment sent by King Louis XVI to the Russian Imperial Court," Cromwell-Morgan said. "The makers have a record of a delivery which never reached its destination."

 

That would make it the oldest drinkable champagne known, easily beating the 1825 Perrier-Jouet tasted by experts in London last year.

 

Cromwell-Morgan estimated the opening price at auction of each bottle at around half a million Swedish kronor (53,000 euros, 69,000 dollars).

 

"But if it's really Louis XVI's wine, it could fetch several million," she added.

 

The remaining bottles, which could number more than the 30 uncovered by the divers, will remain on the seabed for the time being. Their exact location is being kept secret.

 

Meanwhile local authorities on Aaland will meet Monday to decide who legally owns the contents of the wreck. The archipelago at the mouth of the Gulf of Bothnia belongs to Finland, though it enjoys autonomy from Helsinki and its inhabitants speak Swedish.

 

2010 BRITISH ARCHAEOLOGICAL AWARDS

AWARD WINNERS ANNOUNCED

 

The winners of the six 2010 British Archaeological Awards were announced

to a packed audience at the British Museum this afternoon (19 July).

 

Established in 1976, the British Archaeological Awards are a showcase

for the best in British archaeology and a central event in the

archaeological calendar.

 

Today's ceremony, attended by the DCMS Minister for Tourism & Heritage

John Penrose MP, and hosted by historian and broadcaster Michael Wood,

was a key event within the Council for British Archaeology's two-week

Festival of British Archaeology, a huge UK-wide celebration of

archaeology with more than 750 events running from 17 July to 1 August

(see http://www.archaeologyfestival.org.uk).

 

The Chairman of the British Archaeological Awards trustees, Dr Mike

Heyworth MBE, said, "These awards have gone to the very best of British

archaeology from the last two years. We congratulate all the winners and

are hugely encouraged by the public interest in archaeology and the

enthusiasm shown across the UK for our archaeological heritage, as we

have seen in particular with the Staffordshire hoard."

 

The DCMS Minister for Tourism & Heritage, John Penrose MP, said, at the

event,

 

"Today we're celebrating the very best of British archaeology and I was

extremely impressed by all the worthy nominees.

 

"This two-week festival highlights so much good work from all over the

country. 750 events in just two weeks is a massive achievement, which

gives thousands of people a chance to muck in, discover and appreciate

the heritage around them - it is a unique and wonderful opportunity."

 

The winners of the six Awards are as follows:

 

Best Archaeological Project:

The Tarbat Discovery Programme

(www.york.ac.uk/archaeology/staff/sites/tarbat)

 

Best Community Archaeology Project:

Fin Cop – Solving a Derbyshire Mystery

(www.archaeologicalresearchservices.com/projects/fincop.html)

 

Best Archaeological Book:

"Europe’s Lost World: the re-discovery of Doggerland" by Vince Gaffney,

Simon Fitch & David Smith published by the Council for British

Archaeology (www.britarch.ac.uk/news/090327-doggerland)

 

Best Representation of Archaeology in the Media:

Thames Discovery Programme web site (www.thamesdiscovery.org)

 

Best Archaeological Innovation:

Lindow Man: a Bog Body Mystery Exhibition at the Manchester Museum

(April 2008-April 2009)

(www.museum.manchester.ac.uk/whatson/exhibitions/lindowman)

 

Best Archaeological Discovery:

The Staffordshire Hoard (www.staffordshirehoard.org.uk)

 

ENDS

 

Notes for Editors

 

1 The British Archaeological Awards is an independent charity registered

in England and Wales (no 296919) with a membership of a wide range of

organisations and individuals which cover the full breadth of

archaeology across the United Kingdom. It is managed by a group of

elected trustees.

 

2 The full details of the 2010 British Archaeological Awards are

available on the BAA web site at http://www.britarch.ac.uk/awards.

 

3 The trustees of the British Archaeological Awards are grateful for the

support provided by a number of organisations, including the Robert Kiln

Trust, the Society of Antiquaries of London, English Heritage, Historic

Scotland, Cadw, and the British Museum.

 

4 Further details of the Awards are available from the BAA Chairman, Dr

Mike Heyworth MBE, via the Council for British Archaeology, St Mary's

House, 66 Bootham, York YO30 7BZ, tel 01904 671417, email

mikeheyworth@britarch.ac.uk

 

5 Photographs from the Awards ceremony and pictures from the winning

projects are available from Christopher Catling, email

Christopher.catling@virgin.net.