JiscMail Logo
Email discussion lists for the UK Education and Research communities

Help for BRITARCH Archives


BRITARCH Archives

BRITARCH Archives


BRITARCH@JISCMAIL.AC.UK


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

BRITARCH Home

BRITARCH Home

BRITARCH  June 2008

BRITARCH June 2008

Options

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password

Subject:

Re: Sustainable archaeology - was archaeology v. treasure?

From:

Peter Twinn <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Peter Twinn <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 26 Jun 2008 15:32:44 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (196 lines)

As someone who actively supports the PAS in its current form I thought I'd 
share the experience of a front line user it I may, after all better to hear 
some positive good news.

Since starting to record with the PAS in 2003 I have been able to see the 
vast majority of its progress forward particularly in its outreach to the 
general public of which metal detectorist are but a part.
I now have over 1000 records recording the details or nearly 1500 finds 
which initially were recorded to 6 figure NGRs, but since 2005 to 10 figure 
NGRs, that is to within 1-3metres of the finds spot due to the offsetting of 
hand held GPS devices. Before I met my local FLO I have to admit to being 
ignorant to the value of a find-spot, but that changed and I changed my ways 
to become responsible.

In the time since 2003 I have both promoted the PAS and finds recording on a 
website I help run called UKDetectorNet ([log in to unmask]). I have 
always believed it's far better to encourage people to change their ways 
through example than to point wagging fingers with the tut tut attitude. Yes 
of course there are those you will never win, but I still believe we are 
changing and the majority of people who do detect will/are coming around to 
a recording ethos.

As to whether the PAS are fulfilling their mandate, then I have to again say 
from my personal experience they are. I have been with my FLO and helped 
record hundreds of finds at rallies, I have sat with him in museums in and 
around the Bristol area on a Saturday recording finds that members of the 
public brought in (not just detectorist), I have been a speaker at 
historical groups with him (not a detectorist in sight), I have lectured 
with him and another FLO (including Roger Bland) at two universities (not a 
detectorist in sight), I have helped him with school lessons at my recent 
University dig at Berkeley Castle in Gloucestershire, (not a detectorist in 
sight) and I'm going to be with him during Archaeology week at an outreach 
to members of the public. So to say that the PAS is so detectorist 
orientated is just not true. The PAS has and is fulfilling its remit and 
doing it very well from what I can see and I have a very god idea of what's 
going on at the grass roots end of things.

As for me, the effect that the PAS has had on me is immense and life 
changing. I record all my finds, sites and have discovered and recorded many 
new sites which are or will end up on the SMR/HER. I am in the middle of a 
degree course at Bristol University, with the total support and a reference 
given by my FLO. I now donate finds to the City Museum on a regular basis 
(particularly Early Medieval) quadrupling their collection. I offer my time 
in any way that will help in outreaching the general public, detectorist 
included. Now this can be multiplied time and time again, how? Because the 
PAS is working and it is fulfilling its remit to people like me.

We do have a finite resource and yes we do need to get it recorded, but this 
was always going to be a process that took some time, from the coal face of 
the hobby I can certainly say its is working and will continue to work 
provided the Government can get past the briefing of some that in their own 
right are going to create a monster. I don't know if many of you remember 
the days before the PAS, well I do and it was not good. Unrestricted 
detecting without a thought for recording (except an enlightened group 
working through people like the late Tony Gregory). Let me explain what will 
happen if the PAS is pushed into the Renaissance Hubs (who don't even cover 
parts of the country such as Dorset and Somerset). First of all people will 
move because they have mortgages to pay, but as soon as they are they will 
start to look for new jobs elsewhere. When this happens we will see a skills 
brain drain, lets alone the fact that detectorist will not travel to museums 
who may be 30-40mile or so away. Then when we lose those skills we'll lose 
what's left of the PAS. Now were all not silly here, it is blatantly obvious 
that an unrestricted hobby will not be allowed to rise again from the demise 
of the PAS. So the call will go up for a ban on detecting,citing the 
Valletta Convention and getting the UK to fulfill its duty. There most 
certainly won't be a middle ground of a licensing system as that just could 
not be policed sop a ban it will be. All that will create is an army of 
people willing to break the law and continue on their merry way where they 
cannot be seen and with the blessing of landowners who will just stick two 
fingers up to any law about who goes on their land.

So, the ultimate success of the PAS is far better than the ultimate failure 
to have finds recorded by thousands of disenchanted people who will continue 
in the pursuit of their hobby anyway!
Peter Twinn.

















----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Paul Barford" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, June 26, 2008 12:42 PM
Subject: Re: [BRITARCH] Sustainable archaeology - was archaeology v. 
treasure?


> Steve Burch writes:
>> Paul it is no secret that you have been the single biggest critic of the 
>> PAS since day one <
> I do not see why I would have to keep it a "secret". The PAS is a public 
> organization, spending public money and claims to be doing outreach for 
> archaeology with it. No reason then why archaeologists and others cannot 
> discuss that here or elsewhere, is there?  And if we think they are doing 
> it wrong, why can we not be frank and say so and why?
>
> I personally think it is doing it utterly wrong, I have good reasons 
> (which I give) for thinking so; if that bothers them or anyone else, they 
> can answer the criticisms.
>
>> I can only suspect that any archaeological organisation that caters to 
>> the public adding to the archaeological record is abhorrent to your 
>> 'professional' sensibilities.<
> No, I think if an organization is doing archaeological outreach, it should 
> be primarily doing ARCHAEOLOGICAL outreach.
>
> Somewhere along the line some wires have got crossed and expanding the 
> database (which is not the same as "adding to the archaeological record") 
> has instead become the prime aim of the PAS which as I said is constantly 
> leading it (as an ARCHAEOLOGICAL outreach organization) into some very 
> ambiguous situations.
>
> > The truth of the matter is that the end game is for the
>> PAS to be absorbed into local museums,<
> I believe that is no bad thing. The Portable Antiquities Scheme is for the 
> whole public, like the museums are. It makes economic and methodological 
> sense to amalgamate the two systems. This was recognised back in 2002, 
> nobody raised a fuss then. After all, the museums are where the public 
> were going with things they had found before 1996, many finds coming to 
> the PAS still come to it through the FLOs being museum based and people 
> bringing finds to the museums identification services and being referred 
> to the FLOs. Putting the facility (back into) museums may well bring it 
> back to meeting the needs of the general public while in past years it has 
> been too focussed on "getting finds for the database from tekkies" at the 
> cost of other considerations.
>
> The PAS had a specific function (which when you look through the 
> smokescreens it seems it has not really achieved), it had ten years and 
> eight million quid to do it, maybe its time to see whether there is not a 
> better way to build on what it did and achieve a more sustainable and 
> holistic system. Why should that be at all alarming to the 54 million 
> people who pay for it and are not metal detectorists or portable antiquity 
> collectors?
>
>> How do you envisage the PAS being dismantled into local museums with no 
>> central control placing it in a better position to outreach to the 
>> public?<
> I think it will be better placed to outreach to the wider public linked 
> with rather than separate from the outreach already being done by museums 
> and other bodies, why duplicate the effort?
>
> We will have to agree to differ over how useful that "central office" has 
> been, they are after all directly responsible for the current major 
> shortcomings of the Scheme.
>
> For example  - like the topic we were discussing, helping the public to 
> understand what archaeology is and where it differs from artefact 
> collecting. As I said, you'll find better answers to that on the Time Team 
> webpage than the PAS one. Does that not strike you as being a little 
> incongruous after eight million pouinds and ten years of outreach? What 
> actually have they done with all that time, money and resources to change 
> PUBLIC ATTITUDES? (note I said public and not "metal detectorists" - and 
> the degree to which attitudes have in fact changed there is debatable).
>
>
>> going from a time when the recording of finds was an exception rather 
>> than the rule of the hobby,<
> This is rubbish actually. If you were to cut out PAS visits to MD clubs 
> and participation in rallies, you would find that the number of artefact 
> hunters coming forward is in fact no greater than those in the days before 
> PAS (have a look at the data in the 1995 CBA/EH report). The sole reason 
> for the PAS "success" is that they get tekkies to show things at club 
> meetings and rallies. That is not actually "changing attitudes". It's a 
> scam.
>
> You will note that NEVER has the PAS actually released any figures on 
> this. We really do need to look more closely at current and past reporting 
> patterns before drawing conclusions where to go in future. So isn't it a 
> bit odd that after ten years of liaison, we actually do not have any 
> collated data whatsoever  on this? So what is this review going to work 
> with?
>
>> a successful body which has and is the envy of many countries across the 
>> globe, <
> No, its the envy of portable antiquity collectors mostly in the US. But 
> then take a GOOD look at the Ancient Coin Collectors Guild who wrote to 
> support the PAS and see what their agenda is...  Very dodgy bedfellows 
> indeed for an archaeological outreach organization .....
>
> Paul Barford
>
> 

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

JiscMail Tools


RSS Feeds and Sharing


Advanced Options


Archives

March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006
December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005
December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004
March 2004
February 2004
January 2004
December 2003
November 2003
October 2003
September 2003
August 2003
July 2003
June 2003
May 2003
April 2003
March 2003
February 2003
January 2003
December 2002
November 2002
October 2002
September 2002
August 2002
July 2002
June 2002
May 2002
April 2002
March 2002
February 2002
January 2002
December 2001
November 2001
October 2001
September 2001
August 2001
July 2001
June 2001
May 2001
April 2001
March 2001
February 2001
January 2001
December 2000
November 2000
October 2000
September 2000
August 2000
July 2000
June 2000
May 2000
April 2000
March 2000
February 2000
January 2000
December 1999
November 1999
October 1999
September 1999
August 1999
July 1999
June 1999
May 1999
April 1999
March 1999
February 1999
January 1999
December 1998
November 1998
October 1998
September 1998
August 1998
July 1998
June 1998
May 1998


JiscMail is a Jisc service.

View our service policies at https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/policyandsecurity/ and Jisc's privacy policy at https://www.jisc.ac.uk/website/privacy-notice

Secured by F-Secure Anti-Virus CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager