Salon Archive

Issue: 78

Weekly meeting report

At this week�s meeting, Simon Jervis, Hon VPSA, described the engravings published by William Bell Scott in his �Antiquarian Gleanings in the North of England� (c 1851) as a snapshot of the type of antiquities to be found in the private collections of northern families in the mid-nineteenth century. The nineteenth century saw a redoubling of antiquarian zeal, supported by industrial wealth and new institutions, which created a sense of communal purpose in the study and collecting of antiquities, and Scott�s work reflects that phenomenon. In compiling this work, Scott chose to illustrate a number of northern antiquities that are still recognised as interesting and important, and a number of which have become national treasures in the collections of the Victoria and Albert and the British Museums.

A full report of the meeting is available on the Fellows� side of the Society�s website.

Forthcoming meetings

12 February: Laurence Nowell, Cartographer, Linguist, Archivist and Spy, and his Anglo-Saxon Atlas of 1563, by David Hill, FSA
19 February: Farewell Party for Dai Morgan Evans
26 February: Phalanx versus Legion: a classical problem from a Renaissance perspective, by Sydney Anglo, FSA
4 March: Eight Thousand Years of History in Eighty Hectares: the interpretation of the past at Terminal 5, Heathrow, by John Lewis and Ken Walsh

Saxon chamber grave found in Essex

A well-preserved and unrobbed seventh-century burial chamber � packed with the possessions of the deceased � has been excavated at Priory Crescent, Prittlewell, in Essex. The discovery is being hailed as the most significant Saxon find since the Sutton Hoo ship burial. The tomb was found in the autumn of 2003, but has only now been made public, as the objects from the grave go on display in a special two-week exhibition at the Museum of London (6 to 17 February) before moving to Southend Central Museum for a further three-week period (19 February to 11 March).

The survival of the chamber and its contents is due to the sandy mound above the grave collapsing into the chamber as the roof timbers decayed. However, the high acidity of the sand filling the burial chamber means that the body has not survived. The plank-lined burial chamber measured about 4 metres (13 feet) by 4 metres and was about 1.5 metres (5 feet) in height. The body of the deceased was laid in a wooden coffin on the floor of the tomb and surrounded by possessions which have remained in their original positions, including bronze cauldrons and flagons that were found hanging from iron nails hammered into the walls of the house-like tomb. Among the other finds were glass bowls from Asia Minor and a Byzantine flagon, a folding throne of Italian design, decorated hanging bowls from Ireland or the north of England, drinking cups with gilded mounts, buckets, drinking horns, a gaming board, shoe buckles, folded textiles, a solid gold belt buckle, gold coins from Merovingian France, a sword and shield, and a lyre.

Most tellingly, the finds also include two gold foil crosses, fuelling speculation that this combination of pagan burial practice (furnishing the deceased with goods for use in the next world) and Christian symbol indicates the grave of King Sigebehrt, who, according to Bede, reintroduced Christianity to Essex after a lapse into paganism. Writing about the find in The Times, our Fellow Norman Hammond says: �It is just possible that this new find might be the grave of the king who finally established an enduring Christian kingdom amongst the East Saxons�. The new faith, he says, �had been brought there when St Mellitus, the third Archbishop of Canterbury, converted King Sabert in AD 604, but his sons and heirs abandoned the faith until Sigebehrt�s reign almost half a century later [in AD 653]�.

Further information on the find, with pictures and reconstruction drawings, can be found on the Museum of London website.

Stonehenge enquiry

Heritage groups have started to rehearse their arguments ahead of the public inquiry that will begin on 17 February 2004 to look at plans for rerouting the A303 beneath Stonehenge. The Guardian last week interviewed a number of people involved in the enquiry to see what they thought of the Highways Agencies� preferred option � a short bored tunnel of 2.1km in length, which Chris Jones, project director at the Agency, says �will transform the experience of visitors ... there will be a huge reduction in noise because of the removal of traffic ... the nearest source of open road traffic will be more than a kilometre away.�

Archaeologists are pleased that the Agency has opted for a more expensive bored tunnel, rather than the cut-and-cover tunnel originally proposed, but argue that the tunnel should be longer, pointing out that the new dual carriageway will still be above ground for two-thirds of the width of the World Heritage Site.

As Susan Denyer, FSA, Secretary of ICOMOS�UK and special adviser to UNESCO on cultural landscapes, points out: �Stonehenge isn't just the main monument. The monument is the centre of a series of inter-linked ceremonial sites and spaces that make it the most complex prehistoric landscape site in Europe - and that is why it is inscribed on the world heritage list. We believe, therefore, that we need to evaluate the impact of the road proposals on the entire site.�

The short-bored tunnel would cut through the middle of this landscape, with one of the proposed tunnel portals standing within a few metres of a Neolithic barrow. It would also cut across the Avenue, the ancient ceremonial approach road from the River Avon in the south, and across land bought by public subscription in 1927 and owned by the National Trust.

Kate Fielden, secretary of the Save Stonehenge Alliance, says that: �we are still talking about building a major four-lane highway, new roundabouts, underpasses and slip roads through a site that is supposed to be internationally protected. I'm sure that people care about their heritage, and if they knew the truth they would be shocked.�

All this could have been avoided if the A3030 were to be contained within a 4.5km-long tunnel under the entire World Heritage Site, but this would double the cost of the tunnel from �200 million to �400 million.

George Lambrick, FSA, of the Council for British Archaeology, believes that longer-term considerations should prevail over short-term cost-savings, and says �the parts of the road that are outside the tunnel will preclude a whole lot of options for the improvement of the site way into the future ... we feel that this is one of those cases where we have to plan for many generations ahead � not just the immediate requirements for road traffic relief.�

In its official statement on the subject, English Heritage says that it supports the Highways Agency's proposal, and that the route of the new road and its associated structures have been deliberately planned to minimise archaeological disturbance. �We have concerns about some aspects of the scheme which we are discussing with the Highways Agency and are hopeful they will be resolved�, the statement concludes.

A website has been set up to enable the public to see relevant documents and a daily transcription of proceeding is promised once the enquiry begins.

National Trust claims to be �the nation�s biggest classroom�

Fiona Reynolds, Director General of the National Trust, launched the Trust�s new educational strategy last week, saying that it represented a philosophical shift from viewing education as a separate and peripheral activity to making it central to everything that the Trust did. During the middle years of the twentieth-century, she said, �the work of the Trust was necessarily dominated by the need to rescue heritage at risk�. Now, it was time, she said, to get back to the radical vision of the Trust�s founders who �were driven by the wish to make Britain�s finest historic properties and open spaces accessible to everyone ... and saw this very much in terms of social and educational improvement � ambitious, radical goals that had inspiration, learning and discovery at their very heart�.

In a message to Government, Fiona said that the 500,000 school visits that took place every year were subsidising the nation�s education system to the tune of �2 million � not that the Trust begrudged the investment, but that it was now looking for partnership and needed �3 million to realise the Trust�s vision for learning. That vision would embrace learning opportunities for staff, visitors, volunteers, children, teachers and students. Among innovations being considered was the opening of properties specifically for educational purposes, with study days devoted to specific topics or activities. But even informal visiting was a form of learning, she said: �Only 7 per cent of visitors say they come to a National Trust property in order to learn, but 73 per cent leave saying they have learned something�.

Ructions at the Royal Society

The weekend newspapers have been full of speculation that several leading scientists will resign their Royal Society fellowships if Baroness Greenfield, 53, the Oxford University neuroscientist who recently presented the television series The Private Life of the Brain, is elected to the Society�s ranks.

To be elected to fellowship of the Royal Society, a candidate must first be proposed and seconded by an existing member. All nominations are first considered by one of ten specialist committees, and then by a general elections committee, which puts forward a list of forty-four names each year. That list is then put to a meeting open to all Fellows (1,244 in total) at which anyone can object to any name. If a third of those present oppose a nomination, that candidate is unsuccessful.

At present there are some 535 candidates for Fellowship, which is why some Fellows have spoken to the press to express their opposition to Baroness Greenfield�s nomination, even though the election process is supposed to be conducted in strict secrecy. According to The Times Higher Education Supplement, some Fellows believe that electing Baroness Greenfield would be �an insult to the world-class scientists still on the waiting list�.

Her supporters say that the academic community needs to cherish the able communicators in their midst, and that working to further public understanding of science is every bit as valid a reason for Fellowship as toiling in a laboratory. Without public support, there is no funding for science and no new generations of aspiring young scientists.

A spokesman for the Royal Society has said that it is strictly against the rules for Fellows to reveal the names of candidates for Fellowship, and that Fellows who disclose confidential information could be requested to resign.

Renaissance perfume burner bought with help from the Art Fund

The Art Fund has given a �150,000 grant towards the purchase of a spectacular bronze perfume burner attributed to Desiderio da Firenze, an accomplished and well-known sculptor working in Padua in the sixteenth century. The burner is remarkable for the boldness of its composition and the quality of its decoration. The vessel is covered with mythological figures in cast and chased bronze, including conch-bearing tritons, three naked male figures representing Jupiter, Neptune and Vulcan, satyrs, Medusa heads, and winged putti, woven together with swags and ornate vegetation. Perfumed smoke from burning pastilles would have emerged from carefully positioned holes in the satyrs� ears, nose and mouth and from the mouths of the Medusa masks.

The burner will now go on display at the Ashmolean, alongside another fine Renaissance bronze of Pan listening to Echo, also attributed to Desiderio da Firenze. The total cost of the work was �980,000. Additional funding came from the National Heritage Memorial Fund.

For further details and a picture, see the Art Fund website.

V&A acquires Bourdichon�s Nativity

Another Art Fund donation of �30,000 has enabled the Victoria and Albert Museum to purchase an exquisite miniature of The Nativity (c 1500), attributed to the celebrated French court painter and illuminator Jean Bourdichon (1457�1521). The total cost of the acquisition was �250,000, with additional funding coming from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Friends of the V&A. The miniature is on display in Gallery 24 (Europe 1100�1450).

This miniature is thought to have come from a book of hours that Mary Tudor brought back from France following the death of her husband, the French King Louis XII. The book was dismembered In the second half of the seventeenth century. Jean Bourdichon was the official painter, successively, to Louis XI, Charles VIII, Louis XII and Frances I of France. His sole documented work, the Grandes Heures of Anne of Brittany (Paris, Biblioth�que Nationale), has helped identify his other illuminated works. His last recorded payment is for the decoration of tents for the meeting between Henry VIII and Frances I at the Field of the Cloth of Gold in 1520.

For further details and a picture, see the Art Fund website.

Secret list of key works of art

The Sunday Times revealed this week that Cabinet Papers newly released under the thirty-year rule include a list of thirty-five great works of art in private ownership that Edward Heath�s Government agreed it would intervene to buy for the nation if they were ever to be sold abroad. The list was never made public for fear that the owners would either gain a bargaining advantage or that the Government might be sued for distorting the art market. Of the thirty-five works on the list, one has since gone abroad: a Rembrandt portrait of Admiral Tromp, which is now in the Mauritshuis Musuem in The Hague. Eight of the pictures have since been bought by the National Gallery, three are on long-term loan to the Gallery, three have been bought by provincial museums, and one is on loan to the National Gallery of Scotland. Nineteen remain in private ownership.

The final list was drawn up by Arts Minister Lord Eccles, from hundreds of nominations submitted by the UK�s national museums and galleries. Most of the works selected have a long-standing association with people or places in the UK. They include two Canaletto views of London, which still hang in the room for which they were commissioned at Goodwood House, Van Dyck�s portrait of his friend Fran�ois Langlois playing the bagpipes, Holbein�s Portrait of Erasmus, and Raphael�s Bridgewater Madonna.

Leonardo�s sketchbook was last year�s biggest draw

Attendance figures just published by the Art Newspaper show that the Metropolitan Museum�s exhibition of 120 drawings and sketches by Leonardo da Vinci came top last year for visitor numbers (6,863 visitors a day) out of 800 exhibitions mounted worldwide. Since museums in New York also came second, fifth, sixth and seventh, with exhibitions on Thomas Struth (5,790), Manet/Vel�zquez (5,160), Matisse/Picasso (4,970)and Richard Avedon (4,932), respectively, this might say more about the nature of New York than about the subjects of the show, though the State Hermitage in St Petersburg � by no means the easiest museum to visit � came third with its Peter the Great exhibition (5,759 visitors a day).

In 2002, two Tate Modern exhibitions � Matisse/Picasso and Andy Warhol � were in the top ten. This year, British shows were much further down the list, the top four being Art Deco (3,103) at the V&A, at number 30 in the list, followed by Titian (3,011) at the National Gallery, and Aztecs (3,099) and the Andrew Lloyd-Webber Collection (2,900) at the Royal Academy.

Overall, attendance at exhibitions worldwide was down on 2002, because of decline in international tourism. The exhibition that attracted the most visits in absolute terms was The Pharaohs at the Palazzo Grassi in Venice, with 620,000 admissions, but that was only 1,878 a day averaged over the eleven months that the exhibition was showing. In the UK, Aztecs attracted the biggest number of visitors, at 436,000.

�5.4 million donated to the V&A�s Islamic art gallery

The ALJ Group of Saudi Arabia has donated �5.4 million to the Victorian and Albert Museum to underwrite the cost of creating a new showcase for Middle Eastern art, to be called the Jameel Gallery of Islamic Art in memory of the company�s founder, Abdul Lateef Jameel. Mark Jones, Director of the V&A, said: �This gift will allow us to use our collections to inspire future generations and spread a deeper understanding of Islamic culture�.

The V&A already has one of the most advanced displays of Islamic art in the world, drawn from over 10,000 objects in its collection, including the sixteenth-century Ardabil Carpet from Iran and an eleventh-century rock crystal ewer from Iran. The donation will also fund a travelling exhibition before the new gallery opens in 2006 (see �Vacancies� below).

The museum said that it was also seeking sponsorship to refurbish the medieval and Renaissance galleries. following last year�s refurbishment of the British galleries at a cost of �30 million.

Lasers to be used to recreate the Parthenon Marbles

Though the British Museum is continuing to resist calls to return the Elgin marbles to Athens, it has announced an ambitious plan to construct very precise replicas using laser-scanning technology. The museum has secured the co-operation of seven of the other ten institutions that hold fragments of the Parthenon frieze, and are waiting to hear whether the Greeks will join the project partnership.

Laser-scanning technology is slow, but it is accurate to a tenth of a millimetre and once data from scanning has been captured, it can be used to cut a limitless number of accurate reconstructions. A laser-scanned replica of the Altamira cave paintings was completed in 2001 and is now the third most visited attraction in Spain.

Scanning all the surviving sculptures will allow the fragments to be reassembled in a giant jigsaw, and for the original painted colours to be recreated. Such a reconstruction can never be complete, however: only half of the original frieze has survived.

Charles Booth�s Survey into London Life and Labour now available online

A number of key documents of late-nineteenth-century social history are now available online . The newly digitised material includes the original records from Charles Booth's survey into life and labour in London, dating from 1886 to 1903 and Booth family papers from 1799 to 1967.

The material available on the new website results from one of the most comprehensive and scientific social surveys of London life ever to be undertaken, which Booth devised, organised, and funded out of his profound desire to understand and resolve contemporary social problems. The survey was organised into three broad sections: poverty, industry and religious influences. The poverty series gathered information from School Board Visitors about the levels of poverty and types of occupation amongst the families for which they were responsible. Special studies into subjects such as the trades associated with poverty, housing, population movements, the Jewish community and education were also included.

The industry series, working as a complement to the information already gathered about occupations from the School Board visitors, investigated every conceivable trade in London, from cricketers to wigmakers, to establish wage levels and conditions of employment. The series also covered the �unoccupied classes� and inmates of institutions, thereby including material on workhouses and causes of pauperism. The religious influences series sought to describe the social and moral forces acting on the lives of the people. As well as religion and philanthropy, it also covered local government and policing.

One of the most striking products of the inquiry was a series of street maps of London, coloured to indicate levels of poverty and wealth produced in 1889 and widely commented upon. Ten years later, as the inquiry was still progressing, a second series was produced � the �Maps Descriptive of London Poverty 1898-99� � based on observations made by investigators accompanying policemen on their beats around London.

Web archive offers five million aerial photographs

More than five million aerial reconnaissance photographs taken by the RAF during the Second World War are now available on the internet. The pictures include details of British paratroopers seizing Pegasus Bridge at the beginning of the D-Day landings and before and after pictures of the air raid on Cologne. Many of the pictures were taken as part of an intelligence-gathering exercise in preparation for the 1944 landings which began the liberation of Europe. Known as Tara (The Aerial Reconnaissance Archives), the huge collection was previously stored in thousands of cardboard boxes at Keele University, having been transferred there in 1962 from the Allied Central Interpretation Unit at Medmenham, Buckinghamshire

Soon the Keele project hopes to balance its archive with the view from the German side. It hopes to put online a further 2.5 million Luftwaffe aerial reconnaissance photographs of Eastern Europe, seized by the Allies at the end of the war, used as a vital source of Cold War intelligence by the Soviet Union and declassified by Nato only ten years ago.

Court hearing for vicar who modernised church without permission

An evangelical vicar has been summonsed to appear before the Lichfield Diocesan Chancellor, Judge John Shand, to answer the charge that he has modernised the Grade-II listed church of St Mary and All Saints, Trentham, Staffordshire, without permission. The church stands in the grounds of the now-demolished Trentham Park. The Park was rebuilt by Sir Charles Barry in 1833�42, and was an important influence on his almost-contemporary design for the Houses of Parliament. Barry rebuilt the church in 1844, but incorporated a late-Norman arcade of 1180�90, which Pevsner suspects came from the Augustinian priory founded c 1150 in the adjacent Park. In addition the church has Jacobean screens and a Georgian west gallery.

The Vicar, the Revd Nigel di Castiglione, along with two churchwardens, now stand accused of removing pews, choirstalls, pillars and the font, and of covering over the pioneering Victorian Gothic tiled floor with carpet tiles. Two applications had previously been made � and turned down � to undertake this work, and to remove the lectern, pulpit and rood screen. Some of the changes seem to have been implemented regardless, but only came to attention when a former parishioner lodged a complaint with conservation officers working for Staffordshire Borough Council.

Worryingly, the magazine of the evangelical organisation called Church Society carried an article last summer advocating just such changes as a way of making churches more welcoming to potential worshippers. It also advocated the expulsion of �old guard� parishioners who opposed such changes.

Georgian Group opposes Toddington Manor extension

Another house with Barry connections is under threat according to the Georgian Group, which is opposing plans submitted by the Warner Hotel group to build a 200-bedroom extension on to Toddington Manor in Gloucestershire, with parking for 300 cars. Toddington Manor was designed in 1820 by its owner, Charles Hanbury-Tracy, who was chairman of the commission to judge the designs for the new Houses of Parliament in 1835, and who successfully insisted that Barry�s neo-Gothic design should be chosen. At Toddington Manor, Hanbury-Tracy employed the same Gothic style he so admired in Barry�s work. This is not a style that marries easily with modern design, and the Georgian Group feels that the planned extension will have a �disastrous impact� on the landscape. The Garden History Society agrees, but English Heritage has said that after amendments �we are moving towards a scheme that is acceptable�.

Fortress House to be demolished

A small item tucked away in the City Diary section of The Times last week announced that �English Heritage has lost its battle to prevent the demolition of its Fortress House headquarters in Savile Row. Westminster council has approved the demolition of the property which English Heritage rents from Legal & General. The lease runs until 2010�. Further investigation reveals that planning permission has been granted for the site to be redeveloped to provide mixed offices, retail and residential use. Fortress House (which English Heritage prefers to call 23 Savile Row, which is why it is widely known in heritage circles as �the building that dare not speak its name�) was built for the Civil Service Commission in 1949�50 by the architects Curtis Green, Son & Lloyd. Pevsner describes it as �large and monumental and self-consciously Lutyens, though with occasional Rococo bits�.

The new building will be designed by Eric Parry and it will have an internal courtyard with a sculpture by Joel Shapiro, whose previous work includes sculptures for the Washington Holocaust Memorial Museum and the New York Sony building. English Heritage might find solace in the fact that this will not be a tall structure: the new building will remain just below the height of surrounding buildings.

Earth can combat global warming �over time�

UK scientists studying mudrocks from sites near Whitby in North Yorkshire say they have discovered evidence that the Earth experienced a sudden and severe period of global warming about 180 million years ago. Writing in the journal Geology, Dr Anthony Cohen, of the Open University, says that global temperatures rose by about 5 degrees Celsius because of a sudden release of huge amounts of methane from the sea bed. The methane in the atmosphere oxidised to form the greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide. The event was marked by the extinction of 84 per cent of bivalve shellfish. Over a period of about 150,000 years, however, the Earth returned to normal because the warming caused greater rainfall and intensified the weathering of rocks on the Earth's surface by at least 400 per cent. Elements derived from the eroded rocks then combined with carbon dioxide, causing levels of the greenhouse gas to fall worldwide. Dr Cohen warned that there are still vast reserves of methane locked up as ice in parts of the oceans and that the current phase of global warming could result in a similar event to the one that occurred during the Jurassic if global temperatures reach a critical point.

Comet collision exacerbated plague

Scientists at Cardiff University have also come up with a new theory to account for the so-called Justinian plague of AD 536 to 545, a period during which trees stopped growing and crops failed all over the world. Famine was followed by the first appearance in Europe of bubonic plague. Mediterranean historians recorded a dry fog that blocked the sun and Chinese records refer to a dust veil, both of which are symptomatic of a collision between the earth and a large asteroid or comet. That theory has been discounted in the past because no impact crater has ever been found, but Dr Ward Thompson and his colleagues now believe that even a very small comet or asteroid fragment could have caused these results.

The Cardiff scientists have been studying data from the 1994 collision between the Shoemaker-Levy Comet and Jupiter. When Shoemaker-Levy hit Jupiter�s atmosphere and broke up, the energy released was sufficient to spread a massive fountain of dust and debris. Simulations suggest that a comet of less than 0.5km across � not previously thought to be a global hazard � is capable of blocking the sun and preventing photosynthesis on a worldwide scale.

Nineteenth- and twentieth-century stained glass

The Stained Glass Section of the UK Institute for Conservation (UKIC) is hosting a conference on �Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century Stained Glass: art, science, techniques, history and problems� on 27 May 2004 at the �Centre for Life� building in Newcastle upon Tyne.

The nineteenth century was a period of massive expansion and output in the field of stained glass and this conference will look at issues of real concern both to conservators and to those from related disciplines. Further details from Chris Chesney, Hon Treasurer UKIC Stained Glass Section.

Current World Archaeology

The latest (third) issue of Current World Archaeology, published by our Fellow Andrew Selkirk, contains articles on the ballista, the new �Weapon of Mass Destruction� that Trajan used to triumph over the unsuspecting Dacians, on the fabled city of Merv, in Turkmenistan, on the remains of the 1896 siege of Chitral, in Pakistan, on the archaeological treasures of Jordan and on the damage inflicted on the mud-brick Iranian city of Bam by December�s earthquake. A fuller account and pictures of all these topics are available on the Current World Archaeology website.

The proper treatment of human remains

A further continuation to the debate about human remains, research and burial has come from Michael Sayer, FSA, who points out that a distinction has to be made between appropriate and inappropriate uses of human remains. �Going round the stunning archaeological museum in Madrid last year�, he says, �my Spanish companion who had insisted on taking me there stopped when we reached a Visigothic (I think) skeleton in a glass case and said of its display: �It shows no respect and provides no information.�� The same point could perhaps be made of any number of museum displays where the human remains serve no purpose other than to fill an empty space in a display case.

The cost of archaeological storage

On the subject of display cases, the Archaeological Archive Forum and the MLA (Museums, Libraries and Archives Council � formerly Resource) have just published a report looking at the costs associated with storing and providing access to archaeological archives in museums for the financial year 2002�3. Expenditure on premises alone ranges from �5.42 to �41.95 per cubic metre. The research is intended to help museums review their provision for archaeological archives and can be downloaded from the (as yet un-rebranded) Resource website.

New books by fellows

Maurice Howard, FSA, Professor of Art History at the University of Sussex writes to say that he has presented a copy of his latest work to the Society�s library. Entitled The Vyne: a Tudor house revealed, and written in collaboration with the archaeologist and Fellow Edward Wilson, this documents and analyses the recent archaeological investigation of the National Trust house in search of one of the grandest buildings of the early Tudor period. It also provides a new biography of Henry VIII's Lord Chamberlain, the courtier William Sandys, who built The Vyne, and transcribes in full the 1541 inventory for the first time.

Maurice Howard and Edward Wilson will be giving a talk called �Discovering the Lost Tudor House� at The Vyne on 21 February 2004. This is one of a series of Saturday Lecture Lunches at The Vyne, which also includes Tim Knox, National Trust Head Curator, exploring the craze for architectural salvage, in a talk entitled �Piety, Thrift and the Taste for �Curious Antiquity�� on 19 February. Full details are available from the National Trust website.

The Amesbury Archer on TV

A Meet the Ancestors Special all about the Amesbury Archer will be broadcast on BBC2 on Wednesday 19 February at 9pm. Our Fellow Andrew Fitzpatrick will also be giving a lecture on the subject at 1pm in the BP lecture theatre at the British Museum on 14 February 2004 as part of the Buried Treasure Weekend � Fellows with children or grandchildren to keep amused over half term should note that there will be a whole series of events on 14 and 15 February in the Great Court based around the Buried Treasure theme. Anyone who brings along a metal find to be identified can have it analysed using the XRF machine to discover what it is made from, and those bringing in objects to be identified will be given free entry into the Buried Treasure: Finding our Past exhibition. Full details from the Portable Antiquities Scheme website.

If you are allergic to children, you can catch Andrew Fitzpatrick�s lecture again when he gives the Hampshire Field Club and Archaeological Society�s OGS Crawford Memorial Lecture on 24 March at the Science Lecture Theatre, Peter Symond�s College, Bereweeke Road, Winchester. If you would like to attend, you must reserve a place in advance by contacting the President, Kay Ainsworth, tel: 01962 826738.

Vacancies

Victoria and Albert Museum, Educator: Middle East Gallery
Salary �27,000 to �31,275, closing date 1 March 2004

An experienced educator is being sought to be responsible for the development of the interpretative scheme for the V&A�s new Islamic Middle East Gallery, which will open to the public in 2006. Further details from the V&A�s website, under �About Us� and �Job Opportunities�.

EMI Music, Heritage Archivist
No salary details available, closing date 18 February

The heritage in this case consists of a century�s worth of documents, artefacts and music in various recorded formats. The task is to establish the collection, assess its conservation needs and handle research enquiries. Applicants are asked to email their CV to hr@abbeyroad.com.