Researching the Historic Environment – Heritage Science and Beyond!

Researching the Historic Environment – Heritage Science and Beyond!

Where : Fort Cumberland, Portsmouth

When: Tuesday 10th December 2019

Aerial photograph of Fort Cumberland, Portsmouth

Fort Cumberland, Portsmouth © Historic England Archive Photo Library ref: N070043

This event aims to enable CDP students to articulate the approaches and methods which a national heritage agency uses to research the historic environment, with a focus on heritage science; and to start devleoping ideas on how these approaches and methods can be applied across various organisations and types of research.

The event will take place at Historic England’s offices at Fort Cumberland in Portsmouth; which holds our specialist scientific labs.

The day will be based around an interactive exercise where small teams of students will be provided with some limited information (e.g. the bare bones of a context record or building record) and they then need to visit the various labs and talk to different experts to find out about “their” bit of heritage. This might involve getting an X-ray, using XRF, finding out what was in the soil sample, identifying the bone/ bit of plant, finding out the date of the context or how to date it etc. They would then present back to their peers about what they had found out at what they might do next. We will also be looking to include data management into the activity and get students to think about questions such as “What types of digital data resulted from your investigation? Think about file types, file naming, metadata and key pieces of information”.

Experts will help and guide the students in the exercise, talking through processes involved and presenting examples of real life results.

The types of specialists who will help deliver this event range from Archaeologists to Zooarchaeolgists to Palaeecologists To Archaeobotanists To Materials Scientists To Conservators.

Bookings open TBC.

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