View this email in your browser

Salon: Issue 323
4 August 2014

Next issue: 1 September 2014

The Society of Antiquaries of London Online Newsletter (Salon) is a fortnightly digest of news from the heritage sector. It focuses on the activities of the Society and the contribution that the Society's Fellows make to public life. Like the intellectual salons of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Europe, it aims to amuse and to stimulate debate as well as to inform. A copy of Salon’s editorial policy can be found on the Society’s website. News and feedback for publication in Salon should be addressed to the Editor, Christopher Catling.
Lamp flame

Inside this issue

Burlington House summer closure

The Society’s apartments and library are now closed for the summer; they will re-open on 1 September 2014.

Fellows needing to use the Library between now and 1 September must contact the library in advance (by email or telephone: 0207 479 7084) to make a special appointment.

From the General Secretary, John S C Lewis

I am pleased to announce that the Society has been successful in being awarded a grant of £62,400 from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) under its Transition Programme.

This is extremely good news as it will enable the Society to build on the initiatives that have arisen from various consultations with the Fellowship over the past few years. One of the findings of the Fellowship survey of 2013 was that there was support for the plan to draw on the expertise and scholarship of Fellows to inform the public about recent research and the importance of caring for our heritage. We have already made a start on this with our very popular public lectures and ‘Portraying the Past’, our successful summer exhibition at Burlington House, not to mention the many new initiatives at Kelmscott Manor.

The Transition Grant will allow us to build on these successes by producing a plan to identify our diverse audiences and the most effective ways of communicating with them. The grant from HLF will also allow us to develop a strategic business plan to model how our public-facing activities will be supported and how they can be sustained alongside our existing commitments. Fellows will recall that in 2012 they were consulted on proposals to modernise our Statutes. I am pleased to say that the HLF grant will also contribute towards the legal costs of producing a more flexible governance structure to allow us to pursue more efficiently and effectively our public engagement plans.

The Society is extremely grateful to the HLF for recognising the great scholarly assets of the Fellowship and in enabling us to develop a plan to make that knowledge and expertise available to a wider public in a strategic and financially sustainable way.

Turning to wider HLF-related issues, I attended the Heritage Exchange on 15 July 2014. Organised by the HLF in partnership with the Royal Society for the Arts, this was ‘a major thought-leadership event focusing on new ways of working in a radically changing economic environment’ that ‘brought together for the first time a range of high profile heritage leaders and thinkers’. The event certainly stimulated a lot of discussion, and I will be reporting on it more fully in the September issue of Salon.

Portraying the Past

Renée La Due, the Society’s Communications Officer, reports: between 30 June and 1 August, more than 2,600 visitors have passed through the doors of Burlington House to view our summer exhibition ― Portraying the Past: paintings from the Society of Antiquaries of London, an average of 104 visitors a day.

The exhibition was the pilot for a three-year programme of special exhibitions at Burlington House planned for the summers from 2015 to 2017. Feedback from visitors to the exhibition is important to help inform our plans and associated activities for future exhibitions, to create a profile of visitors and to inform our marketing.

Many of the questionnaires were returned with positive comments about the Society, the building, the exhibition and the people who volunteered as visitor assistants or who gave talks. One said: ‘an elegant and stylish presentation, a revelation of our collections — even for a Fellow!’; another wrote: ‘a totally unexpected but wonderful experience and collection’. One visitor enjoyed the ticking of the clocks and others exclaimed at the beauty of the rooms and the objects on show.

The exhibition would not have been possible without the dedicated and enthusiastic group of volunteers we had acting as visitor assistants, nor without the support of Fellows who helped promote the event, volunteered as visitor assistants, volunteered to give informal gallery talks and brought family and friends to see the collection! Thank you for all your help! We hope everyone enjoyed the exhibition and will support our future programme!

Forthcoming public lectures

Fellows should shortly be receiving their meeting cards for the autumn term, giving dates, speakers and topics for the programme of ordinary meetings for the period October to December 2014. Abstracts will be published in the next issue of Salon.

In addition, a full programme of lunchtime public lectures (1pm to 2pm) is planned over the next twelve months, the details of which can be found on the Society’s website, where you can also reserve a free space at these very popular events.

In the first public lecture of the new season, on 9 September 2014, Dr Turi King, the geneticist at the University of Leicester who carried out the work, with Paul Brotherton, on the DNA retrieval and sequencing that contributed to the identification of Richard III’s remains, will talk about her involvement in the Richard III project, focusing on the DNA analysis.

Then, on 28 October 2014, Fellow Neil Jackson, Professor of Architecture at the University of Liverpool, will talk about ‘Mackintosh, Muthesius and Japan’, looking at the influence of Japanese art, architecture and design on Charles Rennie Mackintosh and on his close friend, the German architect and writer, Hermann Muthesius. Muthesius had lived in Japan and this presentation argues that it was his specific knowledge of Japan, as well as Glasgow’s Japanese zeitgeist, that allowed Mackintosh’s most famous building, the Glasgow School of Art, to assume such an idiosyncratic yet, at the same time, recognisably Japanese appearance.

Coming up later in the year are talks by Fellow Howard Hanley, on 4 November 2014, on ‘Silent voices from the Lord’s pavilion (MCC)’ and Fellow Harold Mytum, on 2 December 2014, on ‘Building and rebuilding Castell Henllys hillfort’.

There will be more information on all of these in the next issue of Salon.

Kelmscott Manor events

On Saturday 16 August 2014, our Artist in Residence, Sasha Ward, will lead an Art Activity Day for children aged 5 to 12, helping them to create paper furniture and furnishings to decorate paper models of the Manor. The free drop-in sessions (included in the price of admission to the Manor) run from noon to 5pm.

On Saturday 20 September 2014, Turner-Prize-winning artist and curator Jeremy Deller will give a talk entitled ‘Morris and me’ in Kelmscott Village Memorial Hall, from 6pm to 8pm. Admission is free for Friends of Kelmscott Manor, and costs £8 for non-Friends. Seats should be reserved in advance to avoid disappointment: to do so, send an email to Katy Hacket. For further information, see the Kelmscott Manor website.

Jeremy Deller’s installation, 'English Magic', was commissioned by the British Council for the British Pavilion at the Biennale di Venezia, the 55th International Art Exhibition in Venice, held in 2013. In his installation, Jeremy imagines that William Morris has come back from the dead to offer a critique of modern British society.

The exhibition is currently touring galleries in England and can be seen at Bristol Museum and Art Gallery until 21 September and at Turner Contemporary, Margate, from 11 October 2014 until 11 January 2015.

Open House London, 20 September 2014

All six learned societies based at Burlington House will open their apartments to visitors for the annual Open House London festival on 20 September 2014. Our Society will offer tours every half hour from 10am, the last tour starting at 4.30pm. For further information, see the Society’s website.

100 years ago today...

If the media are to be believed, the Great War began 100 years ago today: even Radio 3 announcers seem to think so, as they have been trailing a series of programmes to commemorate ‘the outbreak of World War I on 4 August’.

To say so makes nonsense of that resonant phrase of Britain’s wartime foreign secretary, Sir Edward Grey, who spoke of ‘the lamps going out all over Europe’, as one country after another entered the war that actually began on 28 July, with Austria-Hungary’s declaration of war on Serbia.

That phrase has inspired tonight’s hour-long vigil which marks not the start of the war but the 100th anniversary of Britain’s entry to it as a consequence of Germany’s violation of Belgium’s neutrality. It would be in the spirit of the vigil to remember that fact, and not to be Anglo-centric and think that there was no war until Britain joined in. An excellent account of the days leading up to Britain’s declaration of war, with images of relevant official documents, can be found on the National Archive’s blog.

Meanwhile, anyone observing the vigil might like to spend some time re-reading a poem that has come to symbolise that still moment in time just before the outbreak of the so-called ‘War To End War’: it was, according to Edward Thomas's diary, on 23 June 1914 that the Oxford train ‘stopped at Adlestrop'. The diary entry goes on to say: 'through the willows could be heard a chain of blackbirds’ songs at 12.45 and one thrush and no man seen, only a hiss of engine letting off steam'.

Exhibition at Wellington Arch devoted to memorials to the fallen of the Great War

It is estimated that there are more than 100,000 war memorials in the UK, erected after the First World War and subsequently pressed into renewed service for the Second World War and subsequent conflicts. This new English Heritage exhibition at Wellington Arch (open until 30 November 2014) tells the story of some of the best-known memorials through drawings, models and photographs, including the Cenotaph on Whitehall, the Royal Artillery Memorial at Hyde Park Corner — located a few steps west of the Wellington Arch — and the memorial to Edith Cavell north of Trafalgar Square. The latter two monuments have just been upgraded to join the Cenotaph at Grade I, and three of the 119 London memorials have also been upgraded from II to II*.

Our Fellow Roger Bowdler, English Heritage Designation Director and the curator of the exhibition, said: ‘no area of our heritage is more poignant than that of war memorials. The absence of the Commonwealth's 1.1 million dead created a powerful need for monuments, and led to the greatest surge of public remembrance in our history. We hope this exhibition deepens present-day understanding of that grief and inspires people to take care of their local memorial as a result.’

English Heritage has pledged to double the number of memorials on the National Heritage List for England over the next five years, working with the War Memorials Trust to enlist volunteer help in achieving this. In partnership with the Wolfson Foundation, English Heritage has also made money available for the repair and conservation of freestanding war memorials in England. In partnership with the Council for British Archaeology, English Heritage has initiated ‘Home Front Legacy’, a national hunt to record the colossal ‘footprint’ left by the First World War on the fabric, landscape and coastal waters of England.

The recently cleaned Royal Artillery Memorial, with the striking bronze figure of ‘The Driver’ by Charles Sargeant Jagger.
Photograph: © English Heritage / Jerry Young

Fellow Gordon Barclay speaks out against the misuse of research

Fellow Gordon Barclay has hit back against newspapers and bloggers who have misquoted his research into the archaeology and history of the World War II defence of Scotland against the threat of German invasion. Gordon’s richly detailed book (reviewed in Salon 299), If Hitler Comes: preparing for invasion, Scotland 1940 (Birlinn, 2013), has been quoted in a number of newspapers as the source for the assertion that ‘London planned to abandon Scotland if Hitler invaded our shores’. This story first appeared in the Scottish edition of the Mail on Sunday and was then elaborated by Rod Mills in the Daily Express under the headline: ‘Secret plan to let Nazis take Scotland’, claiming that ‘Scotland would have been abandoned to the Germans in the event of a Second World War invasion, according to new research’.

Gordon says that none of this is true: it is an example of a ‘factoid’, an item of unreliable information (so defined by the Oxford English Dictionary) that is reported and repeated so often that it becomes accepted as a ‘fact’. The problem is, writes Gordon on the website ‘Think Scotland’, this ‘fact’ has since been used frequently to justify a ‘Yes’ vote in the forthcoming Scottish independence referendum, ‘rewriting history and, in some cases, pandering to anti-English sentiment, and it’s been attached to my name, as the person who did the research’.

Gordon’s article goes on to show how bloggers and the twitterati picked the story up and distorted it even further. Gordon’s supposed assertions were soon to be found on Facebook, accompanied by nasty personal comments from people on both sides of the independence debate. Among the less-offensive comments, Gordon was described as ‘bonkers’ and accused of writing ‘bollocks’ in order to sell his book.

Gordon traced similarly unflattering and untrue references to his work not just to major international sites but to such obscure corners of the internet as Greenock Morton Football Club’s discussion forum and something called the ‘Tartan Tights blog’, where the ‘fact’ that Churchill would have used Scotland as a sacrificial bargaining chip with the Nazis to save England (quite the opposite of the real facts) served as the inspiration for an anti-English poem.

Gordon rather ruefully concludes that ‘my name now appears less frequently alongside what I was supposed to have written, but that has its own downside in that it will become harder in due course for me to challenge the misrepresentation: I can foresee a future in which an attempt to correct a posting of the factoid is met by an assertion that the factoid is nothing to do with the misrepresentation of my work but a proven truth, source unspecified.’ Gordon’s experience also demonstrates how impractical is the so-called ‘right to be forgotten’ that is currently exercising the minds of journalists, lawyers, search-engine designers and the European Commission.

Pressure on the UK to ratify the Hague Convention

The Daily Telegraph published a letter on 21 July 2014 signed by ninety-eight leading figures in the heritage world, including numerous Fellows, calling on the Government to cease its dithering and ratify the 1954 Hague Convention on the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict.

The letter pointed out that Britain had announced its intention to ratify the convention after the looting in 2003 of museums and archaeological sites in Iraq, but that, a decade later, ‘we have yet to honour this commitment’. It pointed out that Britain is the most significant worldwide military power not to have ratified the convention, the United States having done so in 2009; that a draft Cultural Property Protection (Armed Conflict) Bill passed through parliamentary scrutiny in 2008 with only minor revisions suggested and that ministers of successive governments have pledged their commitment to ratification as soon as parliamentary time can be found.

The letter went on to say that continuing failure to ratify the Convention, which has all-party support, ‘is mystifying’, and that ample parliamentary time exists in the current session to pass additional legislation: ‘so the Government should delay no further in introducing the necessary legislation to ratify this important treaty’.

The Art Newspaper followed this up with a short interview with one of the signatories, Nicholas Trench, the Earl of Clancarty, who is a Crossbench peer, and who had expressed his disappointment with the Coalition government’s lack of action on the Hague Convention during a sitting in the House of Lords on 11 June 2014. Clancarty told the newspaper: ‘In Syria, the looting that has devastated archaeological sites is also a means by which fighting is financed and therefore prolonged. Protecting culture helps with rebuilding a country in social and economic terms. Why, after sixty years, has Britain still not ratified? The sense is that, as with all matters cultural, which end up low down in the political pecking order, it has simply neglected to do so. It is high time that the government put this right.’

Eastbourne pier fire raises many questions

The fire that destroyed so much of Eastbourne pier on 30 July 2014 was sad for many reasons, not least because this is no way to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the first ever leisure pier, which opened to the public at Ryde, on the Isle of Wight, on 26 July 1814. Then there is the fact that Grade II* Eastbourne pier could, until the fire, be claimed as one of the least altered of the magnificent fourteen piers designed by Eugenius Birch (1818―84).

Eastbourne Pier before the fire. Photograph: Tim Phillips

Birch is rightly considered the father of the modern pier because he built so many of those that we think of today as archetypal piers (surviving examples include Aberystwyth, Weston-super-Mare’s Birnbeck Pier, Blackpool’s North Pier, Bournemouth, Eastbourne, Hastings and Brighton’s West Pier). Birch favoured cast iron, rather than timber, and this material provided great opportunities for ornamentation; at Brighton’s West Pier, he incorporated exotic detailing inspired by the nearby Brighton Pavilion, and he thus set the template for pier designers around the UK.

Eastbourne pier, which dates from 1870, has suffered fires before, as have many piers around Britain’s shores, begging the question, ‘what is it about piers that makes them so vulnerable to fire?’ One answer seems to be the combustible combination of large amounts of wood used in their decking, plus sea breezes that fan the flames and the difficulty of getting fire-brigade access to put the flames out. Another possible answer is arson: the police, having initially said that they did not suspect this in the case of Eastbourne pier, are now saying that they are treating the fire as ‘suspicious’.

Equally suspect was a fire that destroyed Cadbury Northfield Manor, the historic former home of the Cadbury family in Birmingham, earlier this week; three boys, aged 12, 14 and 15, were arrested on 31 July, but have since been released on bail pending further inquiries. The brick building, which was purchased from the Cadbury family by Birmingham University in 1953 and used as a student hall of residence until 2007, is listed at Grade A on the city council’s local list, though it is not not on the national list. The building had been left empty while the university waited for planning permission to convert the house into flats as part of a wider redevelopment of the site.

Back in Eastbourne, the Prime Minister and the Chancellor were quick to rearrange their schedules last week to take in a visit to Eastbourne, where they pledged £2million towards the pier’s restoration. Funny how the UK’s top politicians, who have cut back mercilessly on heritage over recent years, can conjure up large sums when it comes to winning votes in a marginal constituency.

Politics aside, Tim Phillips, Chairman of the National Piers Society (NPS), welcomed the Government’s pledge to help restore Eastbourne pier and its splendid cast ironwork.  The NPS, founded in 1979 to encourage local communities to cherish and make good use of surviving piers, has just published (jointly with English Heritage) a volume to celebrate 200 years of the UK’s leisure pier heritage, featuring the sixty-one piers that survive in use from the heyday of the pier construction era ― the 1850s to 1914. Britain has more historic piers than any other country in the world, and they play a vital role in the economies of our seaside towns, Phillips says.

British Seaside Piers, by Anthony Wills and Tim Phillips; ISBN 9781848022645; National Piers Society and English Heritage, 2014

The Heritage Alliance manifesto

Ahead of next year’s General Election, the Heritage Alliance has published its own manifesto for the future of the independent heritage movement in England. Pointing out that heritage-led tourism contributes more than £26 billion a year to the national economy, the manifesto calls on all political parties to realise the power of heritage and to:
  • create a positive tax regime for maintenance and conservation;
  • put heritage at the heart of sustainable development;
  • attract more investment into heritage;
  • secure the protection of our heritage.
The thinking behind each of these action points is spelled out in more detail in a series of briefings that can be viewed on the Heritage Alliance website.

Didcot power station demolition

The demolition of three of the six cooling towers at Didcot power station (see the Guardian online for video footage) was a poignant event, made more combative than it needed to be by the heavy handed behaviour of the authorities, who refused to say at what time the demolition would take place or to organise safe viewing opportunities, angering local people by telling them to ‘stay away’.

Needless to say, that ‘advice’ was soundly ignored: some 3,000 people gathered in the small hours of Sunday 27 July 2014 at various points around Didcot, including the Iron Age hillfort on Wittenham Clumps to witness the removal of these elegant towers from the flat Oxfordshire skyline, which they have graced (some would say disfigured) since 1967. Without any of the anticipated traffic chaos or ‘threat to life' that the authorities claimed would be the consequence, those people gathered to watch and then dispersed peacefully and companionably. Perhaps the bureaucrats will learn from this in time for the demolition of the three remaining towers next year. Then again, probably not.

Fellow Malcolm Airs made a valiant but unsuccessful attempt last year to persuade his colleagues on the English Heritage advisory committee to list the Didcot power station complex, pointing out that the cooling towers and associated chimneys were designed by Frederick Gifford and carefully composed into two sculptural groups on the advice of Henry Moore, then a member of the Royal Fine Art Commission, which was invited to comment on the design. Malcolm says: ‘I remember them going up and they have been an important landmark in my life ever since. The distant view across the Oxfordshire plain from the north on the A329 with Haseley windmill (sails reinstated last month after decades of neglect) in the foreground, Wittenham Clumps in the middle distance and the Power Station beyond is an unforgettable landscape experience.’

Sadly that experience is no more, though Fellow Martin Henig says that the view has not entirely been lost: he says that the towers ‘are the subject of a superb painting by a great modern religious artist, Roger Wagner, which belongs to the Ashmolean Museum but is proudly displayed in the Lady Chapel of St Giles Church. It is entitled Menorah because the artist saw the six cooling towers with a chimney between the two groups both as the Jewish Menorah of hope and as symbolising the industrial inhumanity of the twentieth century, especially the Shoah. In the foreground of the painting, dwarfed by the frankly brutal bulk of the towers, we see Christ crucified between the two thieves, while distraught groups of mourners look on.

'Realising that the painting would live on long after the power station had gone I approached the Revd Andrew Bunch, Vicar of St Giles, and David Clover, a member of the congregation who is a skilled photographer, to make a record while the structure still dominated the landscape. Loathed as eyesores while they stood, I now sense a feeling of nostalgia locally for buildings that were an everyday part of our lives and which have now gone.

‘Incidentally quite apart from Menorah, worth a visit in itself, visitors to Oxford should not miss St Giles Church. A splendid new guidebook by the late Catherine Barrington Ward has just been published, brought to completion with a considerable amount of new research by her husband Mark Barrington Ward. The church dominates the ancient north suburb of Oxford but is just a little off the main tourist track.’

Oxfordshire Museum needs £10,000 to acquire Iron Age mirror

Knowledge of Didcot’s prehistory has been greatly enriched by the discovery by a metal detectorist some time prior to 2007 of a very rare Iron Age mirror. The Oxfordshire Museum now has until 12 September 2014 to raise the £10,000 it needs to acquire the mirror, after its sale to an overseas buyer for £33,000. This led to a temporary export ban on the grounds that the mirror is 'of outstanding significance to the study of Iron Age Britain, the development of decorative styles in the period and the evolution of Iron Age mirrors'. Some £23,000 has already been secured through various grants to match the sale price.

The copper-alloy mirror is in very good condition and is one of only eighteen complete mirrors known from the British later Iron Age (300 BC to AD 50). Our Fellow Leslie Webster, speaking for the Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art and Objects of Cultural Interest, said: ‘this rare and beautiful mirror is an outstanding example of Celtic art in the later Iron Age, and is particularly unusual in the way that its delicately incised ornament challenges some of the conventional design rules for the decoration of these high-status objects. Precious symbols of high social standing, these mirrors also seem to be an exclusively British phenomenon, making this fine example a highly desirable acquisition for a British museum.’

For more on this appeal, see the website of the Friends of Oxfordshire Museum. Donations can be made through the ‘Just Giving’ website.
Lamp flame

Finds ‘as significant as those from the Mary Rose’

Finds currently being recovered from the wreck of the London, the ship that blew up in the Thames estuary in 1665 off Southend-on Sea, are being described by marine archaeology specialists at English Heritage and Cotswold Archaeology as 'similar in scope and significance to those recovered from King Henry VIII’s warship the Mary Rose'.

English Heritage commissioned Cotswold Archaeology to carry out this underwater excavation in order to find out how much archaeological material survives. Divers are excavating three trenches in the bow of the wreck, designed to explore archaeological remains in the hold, the orlop deck, where the anchor cables are, the main gun deck and the carpenters’ and boatswains’ store rooms.

As well as mapping the ship, they have recovered fixtures and fittings, such as a glass cabin window, tools and personal items, including pewter spoons, coins and navigational dividers. Finds recovered from the site are being curated by Southend Museums Service, with volunteers working alongside Nautical Archaeology Society members to record, clean and conserve the finds.

Steve Webster, Project Manager at Cotswold Archaeology, said: ‘This two-year project is the only ongoing excavation on an underwater wreck in England at the present time and the artefacts that we can recover may be similar in scope to those recovered from the Mary Rose, but 120 years later in date. This will allow us to better understand a whole range of changes that occurred between the first half of the sixteenth century and the second half of the seventeenth century, a period that saw the expansion of Britain's sea power and marks the start of the British Empire.’
Lamp flame

British Archaeological Awards 2014

Congratulations to all winners and highly commended runners up in the 2014 British Archaeological Awards ceremony, hosted by the British Museum on 14 July 2014 and compèred by our Fellow Loyd Grossman. Prizes were awarded to:
  • Interpreting the English Village: landscape and community at Shapwick, Somerset, by Fellows (the late) Mick Aston and Chris Gerrard: Best Archaeological Book
  • 'Scotland’s Coastal Heritage at Risk': Best Community-Engagement Archaeology Project
  • 'ShoreUPDATE: Sites at Risk Map web portal and app': Best Archaeological Innovation
  • ‘New Secrets of the Terracotta Warriors’: Best Public Presentation of Archaeology
  • 'Bloomberg London', MOLA: Best Archaeological Project
Dan Snow, President of the Council for British Archaeology, presented an Outstanding Achievement Award to our Fellow Beatrice de Cardi.

Ed Vaizey, Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, was a guest speaker at the event. He described archaeology as a ‘living discipline, allowing the people of the past to speak’. He said that the archaeological community in the UK was ‘second to none’ and that the engagement of volunteers in archaeology was ‘part of the ecology of the UK and something unique in the world’.

Full details, with pictures and more information, cane be found on the BAA’s website.

Deborah Williams, Chair of the British Archaeological Awards, presents our Fellow Beatrice de Cardi with her Outstanding Achievement Award watched by CBA President Dan Snow. Photograph: Adam Stanford
Lamp flame

News of Fellows

We congratulate our Fellow John Ashdown-Hill on the award of his second honorary doctorate — on this occasion awarded by his alma mater, the University of Essex, for his work on aspects of local medieval history and in particular for his ‘key role in bringing about the rediscovery of Richard III’s remains in Leicester’ as Leader of Genealogical Research and Historical Adviser on the ‘Looking for Richard’ project.

John talks about his work uncovering and identifying the lost remains of Richard III and the impact of studying at Essex on a short interview that can be viewed on YouTube, where you can also see him delivering a gallery talk, ‘Analysing Richard III’s countenance', in the Society’s recent summer exhibition.

John is also one of the authors of a new book called Finding Richard III: the official account, which tells the story of the ‘Looking for Richard project’. This began in 2009 when Philippa Langley brought together four other members of the Richard III Society to undertake the research that would slowly chip away at the idea that Richard III’s grave had been desecrated and his remains lost forever, and that eventually pinpointed with great accuracy the spot where Richard III had been buried in the choir of Greyfriars church, in Leicester.

This book lays out all the research evidence, with transcripts of key documents; it also tells the story of how the battle was won to overcome the scepticism of so many institutions and people so that fieldwork could begin and how the money was raised to undertake the excavation. It also explains how, through a combination of genealogy and mtDNA analysis, the genetic evidence was compiled that enabled the Greyfriars remains to be identified as those of Richard III. In sum, this is a short but scholarly book, well written and packed with facts: perfect for anyone who wishes to understand the background to research for Richard III without the media sensationalism.

Finding Richard III: the official account, by A J Carson (ed), J Ashdown-Hill, D Johnson, W Johnson and P J Langley; ISBN 9780957684027; Imprimis Imprimatur for the Richard III Society, 2014

On a related note, our Fellow Norman Hammond reported in his archaeology column in The Times this week on the identification of the likely burial place of Richard III’s only daughter, Lady Katherine Plantagenet (1468―c 1487). Norman cites an article in the latest issue of The Ricardian, the journal of the Richard III Society, by Christian Steer, who has been studying the lists of some 900 funerary monuments in London made by the Tudor herald Thomas Benolt between 1500 and 1505.

Steer notes that ‘few members of the aristocracy chose to be buried in a parish church in medieval London’, but that St James Garlickhythe, west of Cannon Street, was the exception: Benolt recorded here the burial of ‘the countesse of huntyngdon lady Herbert wtout a stone’ and later that of her husband, William Herbert, Earl of Huntingdon and Baron Herbert.

The Countess of Huntingdon, who died some time before mid-1483, was William Herbert’s first wife. In February 1484 a marriage contract was drawn up between Herbert  and Katherine Plantagenet, a marriage that was probably intended to secure his loyalty to the king — in which case, Steer says, it was successful.

Katherine is last heard of in early 1485, and was dead by late 1487, when William is described as a widower. She may have died of the ‘sweating sickness’ in 1485, and it seems very likely that she was also buried at St James Garlickhythe. Had there been a tomb, it would doubtless have been destroyed in 1666: the present church is one of Wren’s buildings.

Steer concludes: 'it is an irony that those buried alongside Katherine were members of the very family that cost her father his throne: the Stanleys in St James’s were from the family who famously betrayed Richard III by changing sides at Bosworth.’

Fellow Ian Baxter is to be congratulated on his appointment to a personal chair in Historic Environment Management at the University of Essex (Ian explains that he teaches at University College Suffolk (UCS), but that a quirk in organisational structure means that professorships at UCS are held via one of the two parent institutions, Essex or UEA). Ian says that the chair 'recognises his many years of support in heritage policy development field and his involvement in the setting up of both Heritage Counts and the Scottish Historic Environment Audit.'

‘I am,’ he says, ‘currently involved in the Scottish Government’s “Measuring Success” work stream for the new Historic Environment Strategy, as well as more public-facing activity as the head of Suffolk Business School at UCS, which is placing heritage and archaeology at the heart of the emergent University of Suffolk’s strategic vision. UCS has already launched a Foundation Degree and BA (Hons) in Management of the Heritage Sector, and will shortly launch a Professional Practice Masters course in heritage and museums management. As I understand it, this is the first chair in Historic Environment Management explicitly, rather than heritage — recognising the “management” focus of what I do, and my oft-repeated refrain that despite saying we do heritage management, as a profession we still aren’t engaging adequately with the study of management itself.’

Those of us who have had the good fortune to be a guest of Fellow Alan Garner and his wife Griselda at their Cheshire home (two conjoined medieval houses: Toad Hall and the Old Medicine House) speak of having been ‘garnered’ by their warm hospitality and lively conversation. You too can be ‘garnered’ by listening to ‘The Bronze Age Man of Jodrell Bank’, first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 31 July 2014, in which Martin Goodman, Professor of Creative Writing at Hull University, interviews Alan as he approaches his eightieth birthday and learns how the Bronze Age artefacts he has found around his home, the contemporary exploration of space represented by Jodrell Bank and the landscape of nearby Alderley Edge have all been forged into the powerful mythical elements that are such a compelling characteristic of his novels.
Lamp flame

Flourishing in adversity: Malta in prehistory

Norman Hammond also reported in The Times recently on research being carried out jointly by Queen’s University Belfast, Cambridge University and the University of Malta in concert with Maltese cultural heritage authorities to ‘study the sustainability of subsequent radical change among the Maltese temple-building populations in the fourth and third millennia BC’, or, as Fellow Simon Stoddart puts it in the current issue of The European Archaeologist: ‘asking why do some cultures manage to sustain their civilization for centuries or millennia, while others collapse: can science, using interdisciplinary approaches, begin to explore and understand how humans interacted with, and impacted on, the changing natural environment?’.

Pollen cores studied by our Fellow Caroline Malone show that while Malta saw the emergence of one of the most culturally precocious, sophisticated and long-lived communities in all early Europe, this florescence took place in a marginal, restricted and unstable environment, lacking surface water, deep soil or natural mineral resources; how in these circumstances did the early Maltese create the massive and magnificent temples that are to this day a great source of pride to the Maltese at Ggantija, Hal Tarxien and Mnaidra, or the hypogeum of Hal Saflieni around 3600 to 2500 BC? Caroline says: ‘we question whether failure and collapse are an inevitable outcome, since some cultures developed robust and resilient survival mechanisms that enabled continuity. Understanding those mechanisms better may resonate with issues in our modern world, as well as the world of prehistory’.

The team intends to use a range of dating methods, including radiocarbon, optically stimulated luminescence and tephrochronology (using the ash-falls from volcanoes such as Lipari and Etna) to establish a detailed baseline for Maltese prehistory. They also have more than 200,000 fragments of human bone from their earlier excavations at the Brochtorff Xaghra Circle ritual site on Gozo, which will allow studies of diet and nutrition, health and disease and population structure, as well as changing lifestyles and the impact of isolation on the Maltese people before Phoenician settlement in the seventh century BC meshed the islands into a broader maritime web of communication.

Describing the project as ‘urgent and timely’, Professor Malone notes that ‘the increasingly rapid and devastating economic development of Malta’ over the past quarter century ‘now threatens the scant remaining archaeological and environmental resources that may provide data and understanding for any future work’.

Lamp flame

National Congress on Industrial Heritage, Tokyo, 14 and 15 July 2014

Fellow Sir Neil Cossons has just returned from Tokyo where he reports on an ‘extraordinary two days that saw the Prime Minister of Japan, Shinzo Abe, accompanied by five members of his cabinet, launch the first meeting of Japan’s National Congress on Industrial Heritage (NCIH). Prime Minister Abe emphasised the importance of Japan’s industrial heritage in marking the history of the nation, with its roots in the Meiji era and the long tradition of craftsmanship that preceded it. He expressed particular pleasure at the recent inscription (at the UNESCO World Heritage Assembly in Doha in June 2014) of the Tomioka Silk Mill on UNESCO’s World Heritage List and commended forthcoming nominations of historically important industrial sites.

‘He was fulsomely generous in recording the role played by Great Britain in Japan’s Industrial Revolution, noting her global importance as the first industrial nation, and the clandestine voyage in 1863 of the five young men ― the Choshu Five ― to study at University College London, their subsequent determination to take Japan into the modern world, and their success in achieving that. He saw proper recognition of the industrial heritage as critically important to an industrial nation like Japan and wished to see it as a central element of education and of economic stimulus. In doing so he announced property tax concessions to industrial enterprises that owned historically important industrial sites in order to encourage and assist in their preservation.’

Sir Neil gave the response, congratulating the Prime Minister and the Government of Japan ‘on their outstanding initiative in inaugurating the new Congress, and especially for applying it as a platform for the engagement of both public and corporate sectors in support of the common cause of industrial heritage conservation’. On behalf of the overseas delegates, he also thanked the Prime Minister ‘for the generosity of the reception delegates had received, and for what was a uniquely important event in recognising the importance of historic industrial sites not only in Japan but on the wider world. The National Congress provided a forum for exchanges on policy and practice in industrial heritage conservation, which he was confident would have far-reaching benefits.’

Some 300 delegates attended the Congress, including representatives from Australia, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Poland, the UK and the USA. Especially significant was the presence of senior representatives from Japanese industry, many of whom were sponsors of the Congress.
Lamp flame


Fellow Robert Yorke writes to take issue with a statement in the report in Salon 323 on the ‘Symbols of Honor’ exhibition, based on the publicity put out by the Folger Shakespeare Library. Salon said that this ‘must be the first time that there has been such a display of heraldic manuscripts in the United States’. Robert says: ‘this is not in fact the case, as at the time of the Quincentenary of the College of Arms in 1984 we put on a very substantial exhibition of our treasures, along with American loans, at the New-York Historical Society. Several crates of our manuscripts and other items, including our best-known manuscript, the Westminster Tournament Roll, crossed the Atlantic. I cannot now recall if the Shakespeare draft grants were included, but they may well have been! The exhibition has not been as well remembered as it perhaps should have been, as no catalogue was published. I hasten to say that a number of us here at the College of Arms are hoping to attend the Folger exhibition, and we know how much work our Fellow Nigel Ramsay has put into it.’

Salon’s report on Fellow Peter Beacham’s evocative reworking of the Cornwall Pevsner commented appreciatively on the focus in the book on geology and building materials, but neglected to credit our Fellow Sarah Buckingham as the author of that section of the work.

Salon’s editor was comforted to find out that he was not alone in being unaware that a single aurochs is not an auroch. Fellow Peter Saunders writes to say that: ‘the moment I saw the photograph in Salon of Fellow Geoff Wainwright’s daughter holding the horn core of an aurochs I immediately recognised it as the one from Durrington Walls, which this month has just been redisplayed in Salisbury Museum’s spanking new and (as I am no longer its Director, I am permitted to say) brilliant Wessex Gallery. However, the museum caption refers to it as the horn of an auroch, so your blushes at the spelling error pointed out by numerous Fellows is now shared by the museum. However, lest the finger of guilt be pointed at Jane Ellis-Schön, the curator responsible for the Wessex Gallery, I should say that her only mistake was to take me at my word: I own up to having made the mistake in the original labelling in 1983 and in thirty-one years nobody has spotted the error!’

One Fellow who would surely spot it and point it out is Catherine Johns, who says that ‘the normal German plural “aurochsen” has not died out in English usage: I used it in my little picture-book, Cattle: history, myth, art (British Museum Press, 2011). The parallel with ox/oxen is, as has been pointed out, directly relevant.’

Fellow Dale Serjeantson responded to Geoff Wainwright’s joking suggestion that aurochs could have been used for dragging the stones to Stonehenge by saying that, while people would not have been able to harness such ferocious wild animals, it is highly likely that domestic cattle were used for that purpose in prehistory.

Dale says that she proposed this in a recent English Heritage Research Department Report, in which she wrote: ‘Neolithic cattle must have been used to carry goods on their backs and to pull sledges, travois, carts or ploughs when these were used (Piggott 1992, 16―19). This has implications not just for the animals themselves but also for their herders. Settlement mobility would have made it necessary for people to transport their possessions from place to place. The quantity of material goods required by herders and farmers is much greater than that needed by hunter-gatherers. At a minimum, it must have included pottery, querns, stone tools and perhaps, by analogy with recent herders, some of the materials used for constructing houses. Seed corn and foodstuffs would also have been transported; cleaned grain was carried to Hambledon Hill (Jones and Legge 2009).

Above: cattle in Cantabria, northern Spain, competing in the region's popular  tira bueis (Cantabrian for 'oxen pulling'), or arrastre de piedra (Castilian for 'stone dragging'') competition

'Modern-day illustrations of stones being transported across the countryside for the construction of monuments such as Stonehenge usually show the stones being dragged by people, but it is more likely that cattle were the motive power. Wheeled carts were in use in Switzerland and the Low Countries by the 4th millennium BC (Whittle 1988, 95; Bakker et al 1999). No wheels have yet been recognized in Britain at this early date, but, if used, the carts would have been drawn by cattle.’

Finally on that same subject, apologies to Phil Bennett, whose picture in Salon 322 sparked off the aurochs discussion: Phil Bennett somehow got changed into Phil Cunningham in Salon 323.

Back to the subject of bats in churches: Fellow Robin Milner-Gulland wonders whether the modern problem arises from the conversion of agricultural barns into houses, causing their age-old bat tenants to seek ecclesiastical refuge! He proposes a national programme of folly building to encourage the bats to move again from churches into new homes where they can do less harm.

While that idea is a delightful one, and much to be encouraged, a report in the recently published Special Report on Church Conservation published by Cathedral Communications suggests that this is not a viable solution. Written by Andrew Harris, of Martin Ashley Architects, the article on ‘The management of bats in churches’ summarises the results of a Bristol University research project designed to look at ways of mitigating conflict between humans and bats. Andrew reports that attempts to offer alternative roosts have not proved successful in the relatively short time period during which such attempts have been made.

What does seem to work is ‘acoustic deterrence’, or the use of ‘speakers emitting continuous broadband ultrasound’; the study found that where this was used in sensitive areas of the church, the bats moved away to alternative roosts in a matter of days. Work is still going on to perfect a ‘practical and affordable’ acoustic deterrent that could be licensed for use in churches, but the article holds out the promise that such a system will be available soon.

In the meantime, the best way of resolving conflict, and one that has been applied at Kew Palace Kitchens and at the Canons’ Cloister at St George’s Chapel, Windsor, is to design eaves and soffits in such a way that bats can use them as roosts without penetrating further into the interior of the building. This is usually done when the building is being reroofed. It also helps, apparently, to scatter bat droppings into any new section of the eaves that you want the bats to colonise.

Sadly, the research did not investigate the effectiveness of incense burning as a remedy; many congregations say it works ― but that solving one problem can lead to another: incense use might get rid of the bats but it can cause conflict amongst church goers over High and Low Church practices.
Lamp flame

Campaign news

Fellow Robin Milner-Gulland also draws attention to the unwelcome news that Ed Davey, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, has given the go-ahead for the huge ‘Rampion’ wind-farm development in the English Channel off the Shoreham/Worthing coast. Robin says that: ‘whatever one thinks of the effectiveness of wind farms as an alternative energy source, it cannot be denied that this development will permanently change the view of the Channel, especially from the crest of the South Downs. It also involves a massive intrusion (for its cables) into the archaeologically rich downland above Worthing, across the Adur and its valley and thence northward via Tottington to Bolney, largely within the South Downs National Park. The National Park has objected, but to no avail.’ The National Trust has also said that it is opposed to Rampion, arguing that the views from the south coast between Brighton and Worthing will be ‘unacceptably’ spoilt by the 175 turbines, each some 700 feet tall.
Lamp flame

Commemorating William Butterfield (1814—1900)

7 September 2014 will see the bicentenary of the birth of architect William Butterfield, one of the very greatest of all nineteenth-century architects, designer of All Saints, Margaret Street, London, and Keble College, Oxford. Butterfield lies in Tottenham Cemetery, in north London, under a simple coped grave-slab he designed himself. After more than a century of wear the inscription is becoming illegible and the Ecclesiological Society intends to restore it in time for the bicentenary by re-engraving the lettering using best modern conservation practice so that it may still be read for some generations to come.

The cost is expected to be in the order of £1,800. Funds are coming in but more assistance is needed. If you would like to make a contribution, however small, to honour this pioneering architect, donations by cheque should be made out to the ‘Ecclesiological Society’ and sent to Dr Geoff Brandwood, 2 Rothesay Avenue, Richmond-on-Thames TW10 5EA (tel: 0208 878 4777 if you wish to discuss any aspect of the project). Please give Geoff your email address so he can acknowledge and keep you abreast of progress.
Lamp flame

A request for help re Sir Robert Cotton

Fellow Hugh Pagan asks if any Salon reader is aware of specific evidence that Sir Robert Cotton was, as is customarily supposed, a pupil of William Camden at Westminster School. Although this was stated as fact by Sidney Lee in his article on Cotton in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, and has been accepted as fact by all scholars since, Lee cites no actual evidence for this in his ODNB article, and 'it would be reassuring to know for certain that Cotton had indeed been one of Camden’s pupils. It may very probably be that the required evidence for this is to be found somewhere in the extensive surviving manuscript and printed literature relating to Cotton and Camden, and this indeed is very much to be hoped; but an alternative hypothesis is that Lee was simply repeating, without investigation, an unevidenced statement to this effect apparently first made by J Watkins, in the Universal Biographical Dictionary (1823), on page 403. Can anyone help?'

Lives remembered: Yvonne Harvey (née Crossman), FSA

Meryl Foster, Volunteer Archivist with our Society, has contributed this tribute to our late Fellow Yvonne Harvey, archaeologist and numismatist, who died on 7 June 2014, at the age of eighty-five.

‘This informal memoir is offered by one of many who enjoyed the privilege of Yvonne’s friendship over the years. Others will be able to speak more fully and formally about her career: her time as cataloguer at the Society’s library in the 1950s, her years at the British Museum — first in the Department of Manuscripts and then, from 1964, with British and Medieval Antiquities — and her scholarly work, both archaeological and numismatic. After her marriage to former British Museum colleague, Fellow Paul Harvey, in 1968, and their subsequent move to Southampton and then to Durham where Paul became Professor of Medieval History in 1978, Yvonne pursued her own numismatic studies, while also taking a keen interest in Paul’s varied academic interests, most notably cartographic history and seals.

‘Yvonne’s most lasting scholarly memorial will be her catalogue of more than 5,000 coins from the Anglo-Saxon and Norman mint at Winchester, published in 2012, more than forty years after she embarked on the project, researching in collections worldwide, with some of her happiest memories being of visits to Scandinavian collections (The Winchester Mint: and coins and related finds from the excavations of 1961—71, Oxford University Press, 2012). To her great joy, and that of her family and friends, the book appeared while her health still permitted her to travel to the launch to celebrate the completion of the work of half a lifetime. She did not intend that publication to mark the end of her work, though. Only her rapidly declining health prevented her from embarking on her next big project, dealing with the corpus of coins from the Southampton mint.

‘Friends were always aware of the mutually supportive way in which Yvonne and Paul pursued their independent researches. The complementarity of their interests and circles of academic friends is summed up neatly in an article which they wrote together, on “The coins on Herman Moll’s maps of the counties of England and Wales, 1724”, which appeared in Accurata Descriptio (papers in cartography, numismatics, oriental studies and librarianship presented to the distinguished Swedish cartographic historian Ulla Ehrensvärd, Stockholm, in 2003).

‘Coins were not, however, her only or earliest interest. An English graduate, she had been introduced to archaeology at Great Casterton and at Kouklia (Palaeopaphos) in Cyprus, and over many years devoted much of her annual holiday to work on digs in Scandinavia, especially at Kaupang in Norway with Charlotte Blindheim. She recalled with particular pleasure and pride her participation in the Sutton Hoo digs led by Rupert Bruce-Mitford in the 1960s. Her feelings at the 2012 reunion there were mixed: delight at seeing friends and colleagues, but irritation that recent falls and illness limited her capacity to explore the site again.

‘Yvonne enjoyed art of many periods and cultures: her open-mindedness, combined with the numismatist’s eye for the smallest detail, made her a wonderful companion on any exhibition visit, whether or not the content (or the captions) found favour with her. Despite a chronic hearing problem, she loved music, especially live ballet and opera. At home, she and Paul were, until very recently, listening systematically to all Bach’s cantatas, listening more than once to each. Travel, too, was a part of life, whether for scholarly purposes or for pleasure — the two were never sharply distinguished. Perhaps the greatest frustration of the ill health of the last few years was that it took from her the mobility which allowed her to pursue these many interests.

‘Above all, Yvonne was a wonderful friend. Her love of family ran very deep: of fundamental importance to her of itself, it also informed her view of friendship. Her company was intellectually stimulating, great fun and immensely supportive, in good and bad times. Conversation would range from world affairs to specific research topics, and from serious concerns for the health and happiness of family and friends to her constant warfare against the slugs who sought to ravage her beloved hostas. “Forthright” is the word which many friends have used to describe Yvonne, and certainly she was not one to take (or allow others to take) refuge in mealy mouthed platitudes, but she combined this briskness with a deep quiet warmth, genuine interest in others, and a vivid sense of humour. Entertaining appeared effortless: at home, whether in their beautiful Durham house, or in their London flat, Yvonne produced memorable meals, whilst still finding the time to sit and talk with guests. At conferences, she circulated enthusiastically, often taking newcomers under her wing. Indeed, she simply enjoyed people. At her funeral, Paul spoke of her perfectionist’s approach to life: this was manifest not only in her work, but in her capacity to forge and nurture lasting friendships.’

Late Fellows

The Society has been informed of the recent deaths of Fellows Thomas Faulkner, of Newcastle upon Tyne, the distinguished architectural historian, and author of Newcastle and Gateshead: architecture and heritage (2006), and of John Cloake, former diplomat, leading light in the Richmond Local History Society and first Chairman of the Museum of Richmond.

The Eye of the Needle: English embroideries from the Feller Collection

This splendid exhibition of virtuoso seventeenth-century embroideries from the internationally renowned Feller Collection has just opened at the Ashmolean (on until 12 October 2014) and it is accompanied by a full programme of lectures and hands-on workshops ― if you have ever wanted to try your hand at embroidery, now is your chance, and if you have a go, you will gain all sorts of new insights into textile history, not to mention having something in common with William, May and Jane Morris.

Naturally Fellows are to the fore. Fellow Maria Hayward, Professor of Early Modern History, University of Southampton, will give a lecture called ‘“Worked with gold, silver and silk”: embroidery and embroiderers at the Stuart Court 1603―89’, on 15 August 2014 at 2pm in the Headley Lecture Theatre. Maria will consider how embroidery was used at the Stuart court to decorate royal clothing, livery, furnishings and masque costumes. She will explore the types of embroidery being carried out, the materials used, the design process, the cost and the individuals who carried out the work.

The Study Day on 25 September 2014, led by Catherine Whistler, Keeper of Western Art, Ashmolean Museum, will be devoted to the social context in which seventeenth-century English embroideries were made, and the skills and creativity of the young girls and women who were the principal embroiderers in this century of religious and political upheaval. Fellow Karen Hearn is one of the five lecturers, giving a paper on the depiction of embroidery in late sixteenth- and early seventeenth-century British portraits, as is Fellow Lynn Hulse, who will talk about ‘Women as embroiderers during the early modern period’. Full details can be found on the Ashmolean website.

Call for papers: New insights into sixteenth- and seventeenth-century British architecture

A reminder that the deadline for proposals for the fifth conference on ‘New insights into sixteenth- and seventeenth-century British architecture’, to be held at the Society of Antiquaries on 24 January 2015, is fast approaching. Proposals in the form of 250-word abstracts are invited for papers of thirty minutes in length. While the emphasis remains on new research in architecture, proposals on related themes, such as decorative arts, gardens, sculpture and monuments, are welcomed. The proposals should be submitted by 15 August 2014 and the final programme will be announced in September. For further information, please contact Fellows Paula Henderson or Claire Gapper.

Call for papers: the 2015 Wallace Collection seminars on the history of collections and collecting

These seminars, hosted by the Wallace Collection, are normally held on the fourth Monday of every month between 5.30pm and 7pm. The organisers plan ten more seminars during 2015 and are keen to encourage contributions covering all aspects of the history of collecting, including the formation and dispersal of collections, dealers, auctioneers and the art market, collectors, museums, inventorial work and research resources. If you would like to contribute, please send a summary of up to 750 words, including a brief CV and an indication of which month you are free to speak, by 30 September 2014.

Call for papers: the 2014 History of Oxford Colleges Conference

This conference gives historians, archivists and antiquaries (as well as researchers in related disciplines such as geography, archaeology, cartography, architecture and theology) the opportunity to present their latest research findings or theories on the history of Oxford’s colleges and halls to an appreciative audience of their peers. The theme of this year’s conference, to be held on 15 November 2014 at Hertford College, is ‘College history: approaches and methods’. Prospective speakers are invited to email a 200-word abstract to the Conference Secretary, Daniel Rossall Valentine. For further information, see the conference Facebook page.

Call for papers: Digital Past 2015

To be held at Brangwyn Hall, The Guildhall, Swansea, on 11 and 12 February 2015, and organised by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales, ‘Digital Past’ is an annual two-day conference which showcases digital technologies and techniques for data capture, interpretation and dissemination of the heritage of Wales, the UK and beyond. The organisers are seeking submissions from those working on innovative projects on the themes of ‘Visual Heritage’ and ‘Digital Public and Community Archaeology’. For information please go to the conference website.


Amaravati: relief depicting a stupa with a figure of the Buddha standing at the entrance. Photograph: British Museum

5 and 6 September 2014: Amaravati: the art of an early Buddhist monument in context, at the Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House, and the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Seminar Rooms, British Museum. The Great Stupa at Amaravati was one of the most important Buddhist monuments in India. Founded before 200 BCE, it was enlarged and embellished with innumerable superb sculptures over the following four centuries. More than 120 of these sculptures entered the collection of the British Museum in 1880, forming the most important single group of Indian sculptures outside the subcontinent.

Organised by Michael Willis (British Museum) and our Fellow David Park (Courtauld Institute), with the support of the Robert H N Ho Family Foundation Centre for Buddhist Art and Conservation, this conference celebrates the reopening of the Asahi Shimbun Gallery at the British Museum, where the sculptures have been displayed since 1992, but which was temporarily closed during construction of the museum’s World Conservation and Exhibitions Centre.

The conference opens on Friday evening with a keynote lecture by Professor Akira Shimada, author of a major recent study of Amaravati. On Saturday, leading specialists from around the world will address many aspects of Amaravati and its sculptures, from the rediscovery of the stupa at the end of the eighteenth century to its re-creation in the twenty-first century. Amaravati’s art will also be considered in the context of other surviving sculpture from the Andhra region of south-eastern India, which, despite its importance and quality, has been relatively neglected in the study of Indian art.

For further details see the Courtauld Institute’s website.

6 September 2014: The Suffolk Church in the Middle Ages, The Athenaeum, Angel Hill, Bury St Edmunds IP33 1LU. Among those speaking will be Fellows John Blair, on ‘The Anglo-Saxon Church’, Glyn Coppack on ‘Monastic Suffolk’ and Diarmaid MacCulloch on ‘The Reformation and Iconoclasm’. Further details are on the Suffolk Institute of Archaeology and History website.

13 September 2014: the annual Deerhurst Lecture will take place at 7.30pm at St Mary’s Church, Deerhurst, Gloucestershire. The lecture will be given by our Fellow Richard Bryant under the title of ‘Making much of what remains: Anglo-Saxon painted decoration from Deerhurst’. Tickets will be available at the door. See the Friends of Deerhurst website for further information.

7 October 2014: the next meeting of the York Fellows will take place at 6pm in the Bedingfield Room, The Bar Convent, York, when Yvonne Luke will speak on the subject of ‘Finding a “proper” Neolithic in the Yorkshire Dales: some recent discoveries and surprises’. Please let Fellow Stephen Greep know if you plan to attend this and the meal following the meeting.

30 and 31 October and 1 November 2014: Invention and Imagination in British Art and Architecture 600―1500, a collaborative event organised by the Paul Mellon Centre and the British Museum that will explore the ways in which artists and patrons in Britain devised and introduced new or distinctive imagery, styles and techniques, as well as novel approaches to bringing different media together.

Fellow Paul Binski is a keynote speaker, addressing the topic of ‘Medieval Invention and its potencies’; Fellow Julian Luxford will speak about ‘Inscribed churches in late medieval England’; Fellow Roger Stalley will speak about ‘Reason and imagination in English Gothic architecture’; and Fellow Alexandrina Buchanan will give a paper called ‘Gained in translation: architectural drawing and three-dimensional geometry’.

Further details from the Paul Mellon Centre website.

13 and 14 November 2014: Leather in Warfare, a joint Royal Armouries and Archaeological Leather Group conference, to be held at the Bury Theatre, Royal Armouries, Leeds.

The conference brings together new research on subjects as diverse as Roman military leatherwork, crocodile armour, Ayyubid and Mamluk armour, archery equipment of leather, buff coats, leather plate armour in England from the fourteenth to the nineteenth centuries, leather in Japanese armour construction and leather horse armour.

Further details from the Royal Armouries website.

The Cambridge World Prehistory

Fellow Paul Bahn, co-editor with Fellow Colin Renfrew of this newly published three-volume set, describes the Cambridge World Prehistory as a ‘monster’, referring to the scale of the work, the number of contributors (more than 100 leading international scholars, many of them Fellows) and perhaps also the price (£450, but on offer at £410 if ordered before the end of August) rather than the contents, which ‘provide a systematic and authoritative examination of the prehistory of every region around the world from the early days of human origins in Africa two million years ago to the beginnings of written history’.

The Cambridge World Prehistory, edited by Colin Renfrew and Paul Bahn; ISBN 9780521119931; Cambridge University Press, 2014

Amarna Sunrise

Fellow Aiden Dodson has previously written about the decline and fall of the pharaoh Akhenaten’s religious revolution in the fourteenth century BC in Amarna Sunset, and now comes the prequel: the story of how Akhenaten unleashed an ‘orgy of iconoclasm’, destroying temples and images of the ancient Egyptian deities in favour of monotheism and the cult of the sun.

This book traces the history of Egypt from the death of the great warrior-king Thutmose III to the high point of Akhenaten’s reign, when the known world brought gifts to his newly built capital city of Amarna, in particular looking at the way in which the cult of the sun became increasingly important even to ‘orthodox’ kings, culminating in the transformation of Akhenaten’s father, Amenhotep III, into a solar deity in his own right.

Amarna Sunrise: Egypt from golden age to age of heresy, by Aidan Dodson; ISBN 9789774166334; American University in Cairo Press, 2014

Indexing for Editors

The classic text, Indexing for Editors, by our late Fellow, Roy Hunnisett, first published in 1972, has long been out of print. A second edition has now been published by the British Records Association in the 'Archives and the User' series, edited by Fellow Nat Alcock. Nat writes that the new edition includes the full original text with its meticulous attention to the detail of person, place and subject indexes and its consideration of further aspects of index preparation, including punctuation, cross-referencing and typography. Nat has added a new chapter, explaining straightforwardly how word-processing and spreadsheet programs can assist in compiling indexes. While Hunnisett’s text is aimed particularly at the indexing of historical record publications, the procedures described are just as valuable for indexing name-rich historical books of all sorts, and with publishers increasingly demanding that authors compile their own indexes, this book could well be re-titled ‘Indexing for All’.

Indexing for Editors, by R F Hunnisett, 2nd edition by Nat Alcock; ISBN 9780900222160; British Records Association (£12; discount for members), 2014

Gifts to the Library, April to June 2014

The Society is very grateful to the donors of the following books, given to the Library in the period from April to June 2014. Full records for all are on the online catalogue, and all books are now available in the Library.
  • From the co-author, Allan Brodie, FSA, Blackpool’s Seaside Heritage, by Allan Brodie and Matthew Whitfield (2014)
  • From the curator, Brunella Bruno, Muro Leccese, Santa Maria di Miggiano: la chiesa e il cimitero di un villaggio medieval (2013)
  • From the author, Rosemary Cramp, FSA, The Hirsel Excavations, Society for Medieval Archaeology Monograph 36 (2014)
  • From the author, Christopher Evans, FSA, The Archaeology of the Lower Ouse Valley. Vol 1: Prehistoric Communities at Colne Fen, Earith and Vol 2: Romano-British Communities at Colne Fen, Earith (2013)
  • From Edith Evans, FSA, The Pleasure of Unravelling Secrets: contributions to Swansea and Gower history, by Bernard Morris (2013)
  • From the author, Michael Jones, FSA, Norwell Church and Chapel, Norwell Heritage Booklet 7 (2013)
  • From Michael Jones, FSA, The Church History Project: our churches: a comprehensive guide to the churches of Southwell and Nottingham Diocese (2013)
  • From the author, Conleth Manning, FSA, Clogh Oughter Castle, Co. Cavan: archaeology, history and architecture, Department of the Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht Archaeological Monograph Series 8 (2013)
  • From the editor, Alan Rogers, FSA, The Wardens: managing a late medieval hospital: Browne’s Hospital, Stamford 1495―1518 (2013)
  • From the joint author, Martin Stuchfield, FSA, The Monumental Brasses of Huntingdonshire, by William Lack, H Martin Stuchfield and Philip Whittemore (2012)


Society of Antiquaries: Membership and Groups Co-ordinator at Kelmscott Manor
Salary: £17,500 (pro rata: 87 per cent FTE); closing date: 19 August 2014

The post involves assisting the Visitor Experience Manager with all aspects of the day-to-day running of Kelmscott Manor during its open season and supporting volunteer and administrative activities during the closed season; for administering and marketing the Friends of Kelmscott Manor and Patrons schemes; and for group bookings and the administration associated with them.

For an application pack, see the Society’s website.

Society of Antiquaries: Head of Finance and Operations
Salary: £47,000; closing date: midnight Sunday 7 September 2014

The Society wishes to appoint a full-time Head of Finance and Operations to be responsible for the sound financial management of the Society and to manage the key operational and support services and activities of the Society at Burlington House, Piccadilly. The post-holder will be a member of the Society’s senior management team. Candidates should have appropriate professional UK financial/accounting qualifications (CCAB or equivalent) and relevant experience in membership organisations and/or the cultural heritage sector. For an application pack, see the Society’s website.

Heritage Lottery Fund: Publications Manager
Salary scale: £30,841 to £40,947; closing date: 13 August 2014

The Publications Manager will contribute to, and assist in the delivery of the Heritage Lottery Fund’s corporate and regional communications, providing planning, editorial and publishing expertise for both printed and digital work. For an application form, see the HLF website.

Royal Museums Greenwich, three trustees; closing date 22 August 2014
Three new trustees are being sought: an Academic Trustee, a Maritime Industries Trustee and a Royal Naval Trustee. Further details from the Public Appointments website.

Chair of the Wallace Collection; closing date 5 September 2014
The Department for Culture, Media and Sport invites applications for the post of Chair of the Wallace Collection from persons of significant standing and a high-profile background in the arts, academic, commercial, voluntary or public sector worlds, with the skills to oversee the museum’s future development. For an application pack, see the Public Appointments website.

Chair of Historic Royal Palaces; closing date 8 September 2014
Historic Royal Places also needs a chair to succeed Charles Mackay, who will conclude his third and final term of office on 4 May 2015. Further details from the Public Appointments website.

Propose a lecture

Please email Renée LaDue, the Society's Communications Officer if you are interested in giving a lecture at one of the Society's Ordinary Meetings (Thursday evenings at 5pm) or as part of our Public Lecture series (occasional Tuesday afternoons at 1pm).

We welcome papers based on new research on themes related to the Society's field of interest: the study of the material past.

You can view our current lecture programme in the Events section of our website.


Follow the Society of Antiquaries on Twitter for news and event updates: @SocAntiquaries

Share with a friend

Like Salon: Issue 324 on Facebook


You are receiving Salon because you are a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries or because you have asked to be put on the circulation list.

Subscribe to Salon, our fortnightly e-newsletter.
Unsubscribe (You will no longer receive Salon nor any other e-communication from the Society).
Forward this e-newsletter to a friend.

Editor's note on SalonSAL logo

The Society cannot guarantee the accuracy of, or accept any responsibility for, the contents of Salon. Readers who wish to use or quote from items in Salon should always check the accuracy and current position with the source.

© 2014 Society of Antiquaries of London | Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BE
Telephone: 020 7479 7080 | Website: