jueves, 1 de agosto de 2013

Rescued from the Sea (United Kingdom)

Students from an Ashington school are using their media skills to help record the progress of a major archaeological excavation on the Northumberland coast. The ‘Rescued from the Sea’ project at Low Hauxley is being documented in a series of videos created by three year seven students from Hirst Park Middle School.
The Rescued from the Sea project aims to excavate and rescue what is left of a Bronze Age cemetery site and underlying Mesolithic deposits before they are eroded into the sea at a site just south of Amble. The erosion problem is only worsening and, if left untouched, the entire site will be lost to the sea within a mere few years.
A number of excavations since 1982 have successfully rescued parts of a Bronze Age cemetery consisting of cists containing both inhumations and cremations.

Over 100 animal and human footprints

Discovered beneath the cemetery was a Mesolithic occupation layer that produced scores of worked stone tools. Further evidence of Mesolithic activity has been found in an inter-tidal peat bed located to the south of the site. Impressed into the peat are over 100 animal and human footprints, created when hunter-gatherer-fisher groups lived in this area. Both adult and child footprints have been identified as well as those of wild boar, red deer and aurochsen (a much larger ancestor of modern cattle). In addition, worked pieces of timber and a red deer antler have been recovered from the peat. Radiocarbon dating has confirmed that the footprints are approximately 7000 years old.

Running a 10 week excavation

Enlisting the help of volunteers, local school children, university students and a number of experts and specialists, Archaeological Research Services and the Northumberland Wildlife Trust are running a 10 week excavation to discover as much as possible about the landscape’s past inhabitants.
As well as looking at the progress of the excavations the films also take a look at the community and educational aspects of the project. The three girls who make up the video crew have not only learned the technical skills involved in recording video and sound, they have also had to do research, come up with scripts and questions, and have been involved with the final edit of each video.

Extremely professional product

Brian Cosgrove, Media Manager with the Ashington Learning Partnership, said, “I have student media crews working on a number of projects and I am very proud of the work this crew has done. The final product is extremely professional. We have had some amazing feedback from the archaeology team and the Northumberland Wildlife Trust about their work. Having the opportunity to be a part of a project like this is fantastic in so many ways”.
Hirst Park Principal, Mr David Godfrey, said, “This has provided our students with the opportunity to be self-sufficient learners, great communicators, work alongside professionals out in the community and take an active part in raising awareness of the fragility of their world and it’s heritage”.

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