Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Fields of Conflict

Over the past few days an number of the project team have been attending the 5th Fields of Conflict conference in Gent (Belgium). FOC exists to bring together specialists in Conflict Archaeology from around the globe. Delegates included Doug Scott, who virtually invented battlefield archaeology when he investigated the site of Little Bighorn, Glenn Foard, who has worked on Civil War sites from the UK and Susana andAchim Wilbers-Rost from the site of the Varian disaster (AD9) at Kalkriese. Inevitably the range of papers was wide, diverse and stimulating.

Project members Peter Masters, Birger Stichelbaut, Jon Price and Martin Brown all presented on Great War Archaeology, heavily drawing on the Plugstreet Project. Peter and Birger spoke on their remote sensing work, marrying geophysics, aerial photographs and map regression work, wowing the audience with their results. Jon spoke about methodological approaches to excavation. Martin spoke on the subject of looking over the parapet, which explored the wider frame in which excavations on the Western Front exist - militarised landscapes, civilians, training and the international links of the war.

Also speaking was Veerle Hendricks from the Flemish Heritage Institute, the VIOE. Veerle is writing up the A19 excavations arouns Ieper from 2002 onwards, including sites dug by No Man's Land. It was her first major conference paper and she performed very well and wasn't fazed by the eminent panelof delegates.

It wasn't all work and we did enjoy some lovely Belgian beer, including some rarities and oddities, while Oude Druide is nice we weren't so keen on Spook! Birger was an excellent local guide and we especially salute the Ratz Bar, opposite the Opera House!

No comments: