How to make a medieval cave and tunnel system more appealing. To a very specific market of small girls.
King Harold was somewhat notoriously so battered after the Battle of Hastings, that there was trouble IDing him (one of those facts many kids know - an arrow to the face + battle wounds = childhood gore levels to the max) and due to his then death, the way was clear for us gaining a new ruling class, some ace tourist attractions and extra set of words to our mongrel language.
However... there's a bit of an idea that Harold survived, and lived locally and secretly as a religious hermit, before confessing his true identity on his deathbed and being buried at Waltham Abbey, Essex.
Cue a very keen author and "amateur historian" Peter Burke and the same production team, Oval Films, who worked on Richard III's discovery. They've just had the licence for archaeological shenanigans approved by English Heritage, and work can begin on playing Hunt the Harold.
The caves and tunnels are underground.
Bits of the country have flooded.
Our caves and tunnels are partially flooded.
The electricity has gone to that area. (and even if it hadn't, electricity and water?...)
Even with pumps, the damage to the stone needs to be estimated before it's passed as safe for public access.
There's really not much we can do for you, so getting angry at staff will only make them get increasingly polite and smiley towards you, while also loosing the will to actually help you out.
Obviously, not my artwork in this cartoon! See www.duggoons.com for some great art based cartoons.
I might have gone full frontal nerd at the British Museum.
Dressed in tweed jacket, sensible long skirt, and with hair straying form my sensible plait, I was genuinely rendered into a mix of slack jawed silence and incoherent excitable mumbling at the sight of the Rosetta Stone.
It may not have helped that having laughed at my reaction, I berated my husband while ineffectually smacking him with a leaflet, thus further reinforcing the batty and comedic female archaeologist archetype.
Couple of pictures showing what caught my eye on our hit and run visit are below.
When You Work At A Museum is a website dedicated, like here, to this folks who know the joys, pains and mixed bag of working for art galleries, museums etc, and they have sort of accidentally created a monster.
Having shared a video created by a museum, based on Farrell William's Happy video, they got a few more videos sent to them, and joked about a dance off. Then it got serious, and museums across the globe got in touch to ask "we've not made one yet, but would like to..."
Cue over 30 venues now submitting their dance off contenders to the ring, and a series of semi finals and finals where you get to vote. Find out more here. You can now vote on the second two contenders.
Do, please keep an eye on this over the next few weeks, as it looks to be crazed and just enjoyable.
My vote yesterday went to the Hamilton Museum of Steam of Technology, for bravely picking a slightly obscure song, rewriting the whole thing especially for their venue, singing it themselves, explaining science in their video, and holding what looks like the strangest rave ever. (Even though the other video had Asian Harry Potter cuddling a human skull in a library...)
I awoke this morning to Radio 4 "...off the north coast of Haiti...underwater archaeology...one of the most important discoveries in recent years... More in depth report later"
And I thought, "My gods, they have replaced football with archaeology, as we joked about yesterday..."
Don't know the joke? Well here's what the world would be like if we had avid archaeology fans, not football fans.
Firstly, imagine every time within a day that football is mentioned by someone else. Secondly, replace it with something that you don't want to hear about every day. Say... Archaeology. Then, think about how an average day would pan out.
So, you awaken to the clock radio. It's 7AM. Just as you awaken, it's time for the news and archaeology already. Not news and other historical investigations, like library restorations or museum openings (unless there's another event happening), but just the news and archaelogy. Malaysian plane is still missing. Pistorius is still on trial. New dig announced in Giza. Ancient Mayan temple discovered. Exciting stuff.
From March 24-30 2014, hundreds of museums and galleries from across the UK and Europe will come together on Twitter for the first ever #MuseumWeek. You can see who is officially taking part here, and you can also join in!
The # thing also works across instagram and Facebook, and you can browse sites without having an account for them (great for you social media phobes)
Visit Europe's museums and tweet pictures with the #MuseumWeek hashtag.
This week's themes are:
"Archaeologists channel spirit of Rastamouse as robber returns iPad to police in Liverpool"
Webcomic and occasional blog about the heritage sector.
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