Community archaeology project ‘highly commended’ at the Marsh Archaeology Awards 2015

11 November 2015

Trench 1 of the Whitehawk Camp community excavation and the fabulous view over Brighton, looking south west

The Whitehawk Camp Community Archaeology Project has been ‘highly commended’ in this year’s Council for British Archaeology’s Marsh Archaeology Awards.

The Heritage Lottery funded project was run by the UCL Centre for Applied Archaeology in partnership with Royal Pavilion & Museums (RPM) and Brighton & Hove Archaeological Society. It aimed to focus local attention on the site and surviving archive of the nationally important Whitehawk Camp Neolithic Causewayed Enclosure, Brighton, East Sussex.

The Project team engaged local people in a community excavation, site improvement works, the re-packing and cataloguing of the existing archive, the development of digital media, a schools, community and events outreach programme and the specialist reassessment of the archive material from the 1920s and 30s excavations.

Re-bagging and cataloguing the Neolithic pottery (uncovered during the Whitehawk Camp excavations) at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery

In their announcement of the awards, the CBA commented:

  • "This project provided a great example of an engaging community project.  136 people volunteered on the project, and it engaged the wider community with regular updates on its website in addition to being active on social media in local press, radio and even television. The experience they gained was also used to benefit other community initiatives, leading to them being successful in their goals too."

The Whitehawk Camp Community Archaeology Project ran from April 2014 to March 2015 and was managed on behalf of UCL by Hilary Orange and Jon Sygrave, with the involvement of Matt Pope and numerous members of Archaeology South-East (ASE) staff.

Anna Doherty, ASE Pottery Specialist provides feedback to the Whitehawk Camp Project volunteers on the pottery reassessment

An article is due to be published in the forthcoming volume (18) of Archaeology International with the Post-Excavation Assessment and a further article due in 2016. Work is ongoing at the site and on the archive.

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