Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Spring Update

It's been a little while since we last posted anything, so some updates!

Registrations for the coming season have been going along well, and we have now filled up all the spaces for the Undergraduate Fieldschool. There are still a handful of spots left for each week of the Public Fieldschools, so if you want to join us, do get in contact soon to bag your spot!

The dates for the Public Fieldschools are Sunday 9th July - Friday 14th July, and Sunday 16th July - Friday 21st July; to get more information, contact edward.peveler@arch.ox.ac.uk


This coming summer the project will be going through a bit of a change, as Ed will be stepping aside somewhat (to finish his PhD thesis...hooray), and so the project has gained a new Assistant Director, a familiar face to many: Thomas Matthews Boehmer. He's written a little bit about himself below, for those that don't know him yet.

Hello! – I'm Thomas, and will become co-assistant director at the Dorchester on Thames dig this year (taking over as sole assistant director for the 2018 season). I’m extremely excited to be taking on this role, and to help the project develop in its last two years.

I have been digging in and around Oxford since the age of thirteen, and have been involved as a supervisor at Dorchester for the previous two seasons, having first dug there (with Ed as my supervisor) in 2012.    

I'm currently studying at Cambridge for an MPhil in Archaeology, having studied for my undergraduate degree in Ancient History and Classical Archaeology at Warwick. My particular interests lie in the transitions from the British Late Iron Age to the Roman period, and so the potential results of these coming two seasons at Dorchester are really intriguing. This is a site that can really help build our understanding of these critical phases in the history of the British Isles.

Much of the set-up of the dig will be carrying on as usual with undergraduates working on the dig in the first two weeks, followed by local volunteers and mature students in the final fortnight. However, I am developing a couple of new dimensions this year:

- Firstly, I want to ensure we have a far more reflective record of the work on the site, beyond the formulaic recording of the context sheets, finds records etc. We are going to be giving workbooks to each team in the trench, so that individual excavators can record their own ideas and thoughts, reflections and speculations about what is going on in the area in which they are working. Whether that's comments on the weather, doodles of artefacts, or just general musings on the progress of the day, this kind of information is actually going to be really important for understanding how the archaeological process took place on our site.

- Secondly, a bit more fun. We will be starting an Instagram account, because who doesn't love filters and hashtags... so watch this space!


There will be another update coming soon, this time from Sheila Raven, our Post-Ex supervisor, to let us in on what her and her team have been getting up to squirreled away in the basement of the Institute of Archaeology, playing with our lovely finds....

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