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For more than forty years Berkhamsted and district archaeological society has offered a hands-on opportunity for local people to explore the history of this area.
Archaeology is an interest that appeals to all ages and all walks of life. Members of the society choose their own level of involvement and the activities in which they want to participate.
So, if you've ever wondered how the experts reach their conclusions about your ancesters, here's a chance to find out...
Come to any of our lectures and meet fellow enthusiasts or
Annual adult subscriptions £15
BADAS members play an important role in helping with excavations on major sites, providing archaeological manpower resources which might not otherwise find funding or where time-scales are critical.
With coaching, members gain real experience in most aspects of archaeology, from helping to conduct geophysical surveys of important sites to actually digging to unearth finds that can identify and date a site and provide clues about what took place there from decades to thousands of years ago. This is real archaeology - discovering our ancestors and the world they lived in.
Volunteers are needed for excavation and digging, recording finds and finds washing.
By converting the strength of measured signal into tones of grey in the computer we can create a diagram showing what lies beneath the surface so we can establish which areas we need to excavate.
The pictures on the right show a resistivity suvey in progress and the graphic below it is a typical survey of a plot of ground 30 meters square.
As entertaining as they are informative, the society's lectures are held in the ancient hall now used as the music room in Berkhamsted's Collegiate School, monthly from September to April.
Specialist guest speakers cover periods from ancient Egypt to ancient Britain, Roman to Saxon and medieval to Victorian.
Topics range from specialist techniques to assist in dating and identifying finds to discussions about what archaeologists have learned of the societies and cultures whose artifacts and sites have been discovered.
And when the mood takes us we have also been known to enhance our talks with supper.
The pictures above show our work in the lawns at Ashridge House where we are exploring the remains of the conventual church. It was dedicated in 1286 and demolished in 1575. The remaining monastic buildings were demolished in 1803 and replaced by the current house. Above is a small coin found there in 2012.
Offering a wider perspective for our members, we arrange visits to important archaeological sites throughout the UK. usually over a weekend, often with specialist commentary from local experts. Sutton Hoo, Roman Bath, pre-historic monuments, Norman churches, castles and mosaics have featured in recent itineraries.
These are both educational and entertaining as well as offering an oportunity for like minded people to share a fulfilling and social event.
Lectures are held on Monday evenings in the music room in Berkhamsted School, Mill Street, at 7.45pm.
Simon West, District Archaeologist St Albans City & District Council
Chris Elliott, English Heritage
Alistair Byford-Bates, Historic Environment Fisheries Liaison Officer. Wessex Archaeology
22 JANUARY 2018
Dr Alexandra Fletcher, Dept. of Ancient Near East, The British Museum.
Dr Nick Ashton, FSA, Honorary Reader, UCL Institute of Archaeology
Hayley Bullock, Senior Conservator, The British Museum
Lyn Blackmore, FSA, Senior Finds Specialist, Museum of London.
Followed by the Society’s 46th AGM
See the panel on the left
OFFICERS AND COMMITTEE
Additional Committee members
Contact us -
Click here to download a PDF of the societies rules
Our trips away either for a day or for a weekend are famous for being entertaining, enlightening and professional. They add to our store of archaeological knowledge and, above all, they are fun.
BADAS has been blessed with some truly dedicated organisers for several years - John and Marguereta Dahl and more recently Brendon and Janet Sparks. They are proving to be a hard act to follow and after this years trip we will have come to the end of the road. No more BADAS away days.
Ideally we need a couple who are prepared to take on the job of coordinating trips from 2018. It's not arduous, you don't need to be fully fledged archaeologists, it doesn't cost anything, the only emotion involved is pleasure and it doesn't matter how old you are.
You will get huge support from the rest of the committee and the backing of our chairman who is one of the county's leading archaeologists to help with the planning. Then you rece the trip, time it, cost it and ultimately book it and sit back basking in the adulation of the rest of the members.
Don't just sit there - do something to contribute to the success of our great society - volunteer today by contacting Peter Clayton or one of the committee members but don't delay - the sooner you start the easier it is to get next years programme under way.
The ongoing dig at Ashridge has been carefully documented and reports have been published every year for the College.
PDFs of these reports have been prepared and links are available here for you to download your own copies
The growth of the internet brings the past into the present and the future and makes archaeological information increasingly accessible. The following links are particularly recommended:
BBC HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY