OA are currently involved in what is known as the Planarch II project. This essentially is looking at the quality and effectiveness of cultural heritage EIAs within the Planarch Region.
The project is part of the Interreg projects, promoted by the European Regional Development Fund. The UK is part of the North West Europe Group, along with Belgium, France, Germany and Holland. There is a particular interest in planning issues in the area and a partnership to look at Archaeology and Planning, Planarch, has been set up. Our British project will be mirrored by work by the other partner states resulting in developing best practice in EIAs within England and North-West Europe. The Planarch partners for the UK are Kent County Council, Essex County Council and for the purposes of this study English Heritage, Derbyshire County Council and one other County Council to be confirmed.
As part of this project we are trying to identify well-regarded EIA studies to establish a benchmark against which others can be reviewed. These benchmark studies will not be treated as near-perfect exemplars of cultural heritage EIAs. Their main value is as case studies from which a composite benchmark standard of best practice can begin to be established, recognising that more than one approach can be recommended for different types and scales of development. These benchmark studies are, therefore, to be collated for a variety of development types and/or which cover particular issues of the cultural heritage particularly well and which will help judge the quality of other EIAs and define standards.
To this end we wondered if you could think of any very good cultural heritage EIAs (or which may cover one aspect of the c-h particularly well) which have been produced since 1999 and where development has now taken place. Such examples need not necessarily fall within the Planarch region, they could have been carried out anywhere in the country. It would be useful, but not essential, if we could assemble examples which cover a range of particular issues, for example; the problems encountered where archaeology lies within contaminated land; good examples of where the historic landscape has been fully integrated and assessed; where archaeological impacts have been mitigated mainly through design; where there is evidence within the Environmental Statements of close liaison between other team members eg ecology, visual landscape etc.
Any nominations you make will be treated confidentially and the final decision as to which ones make our short list will be made by the Planarch team.
We are working to a very tight time table for this phase of the project and would very much appreciate it if you could provide your nominations within the next week or so
Many thanks for taking the time to consider this
Oxford Archaeology, Janus House, Osney Mead, Oxford, OX2 0ES
01865 263800 (t)
01865 793496 (f)
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