The University of Salford has established a new Centre for Applied Archaeology which will investigate archaeological sites, historic buildings and industrial heritage across the Northwest and give local communities opportunities to take part in actual excavations.
The new Centre will be based at the University’s cube Gallery on Portland Street, Manchester, and already has a series of projects to work on including excavations at the 12th century Buckton Castle in Stalybridge, Tameside, a national series of training days on industrial buildings run with the Council for British Archaeology and Association for Industrial archaeology, and a book on industrial Glasgow showing-casing the archaeology of the M74.
Excavations like the one at Buckton will provide the chance for members of the public to be trained in archaeological techniques and learn more about the history of their community.
As well as projects involving the community, an important part of the new Centre’s work will include carrying out analysis and recording of sites which may be affected by redevelopment work. The team is also looking to develop postgraduate teaching in conjunction with the heritage courses already running in the University’s Schools of the built environment and Art & Design.
Head of Archaeology, Dr Mike Nevell, from the Centre said: “We’re going to be working on a huge range of time periods – from the Mesolithic to the relatively modern. Obviously, being located in Greater Manchester, a lot of our work will focus on the region’s world-class industrial archaeology, but the region has a rich history stretching back to the earliest human habitation of Britain which we want to bring to as wide an audience as possible.”
The University’s new Vice-Chancellor, Professor Martin Hall, is also an archaeologist and welcomed the new Centre. “The Centre’s work is critical for preserving the region’s urban fabric,” he said. “It will also act as a dynamo for an army of volunteers from school kids to pensioners who’ll turn out to work on sites.
“The Centre will make an important contribution to the University’s emphasis on public engagement and help us extend our research and postgraduate offering so I’m pleased to welcome the team to Salford.”
Source: University of Salford