No. 95 Vol. VIII No. 12 Published January 1985
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British Archaeological Awards
O N November 15th, the revamped British Archaeological Awards were presented before a full house at the British Museum lecture theatre by Lord Montagu. The awards are now backed by all the major national archaeological societies save one, and once again they provided the opportunity to take a look at some of the highlights of British archaeology.
The most newsworthy winner proved to be Ian Skipper, the businessman behind the Jorvik Viking Centre who won both the ILN Sponsors award, and was co-winner (with Margaret Rule) of the Legal and General Silver Trowel award for initiative. Ian Skipper, who began his business career by building up a chain of Lancashire garages, is a new face on the archaeological scene, but I suspect we shall be hearing a lot more of him in the future. The runner-up in the Illustrated London News award for the sponsorship of archaeology was the property company MEPC: they were the developers of the Reading water front which we described in CA 93, and they not only allowed time for excavations but also largely funded them, and then went on to pay for a booklet describing the site.
Only two awards were made for the Pitt-Rivers award, the former Chronicle award for volunteer, or independent archaeologists, now funded by the Robert Kiln Trust. The winner was an individual, Don Spratt, a former industrial chemist working for ICI, who since his retirement has been researching the Yorkshire Moors. Nothing had been written about these since Elgee's book in the 1930s, so he pulled together all the work that had been done, and this has now been published as Prehistoric and Roman Archaeology of North-East Yorkshire edited by D. A. Spratt, (BAR 104, 1982). The runners-up were the Haverhill and District Archaeological Society, from Suffolk, who have been very active in their area, particularly in fieldwalking, and have discovered a causewayed camp at Hill farm, Keddington. Interestingly, the concentration of flints recovered from their field walking lay to one side of, and partly outside the confines of the actual camp.
The Country Life award for professional archaeologists was made to Cleveland archaeology. In many ways this deserves to be a personal award to Blaise Vyner, who, since his appointment as County archaeologist has made Cleveland into one of the foremost counties for archaeology. Blaise Vyner was originally a Cardiff graduate (one of the so-called "Tafia"), and he then became deputy director of the Glamorgan Gwent Archaeological Trust. When he was appointed to Cleveland, he was appalled by the unemployment there, and was determined to do something about it, so he approached the Manpower Services Commission, and set up a number of very worth while projects notably at Thorpe Thewles (CA 88), Street House (CA 94) and Hartlepool.
The most imaginative competition was undoubtedly that devised by the Young Archaeologists' Club, who gave an award for the best archaeological game that could be invented. This gave the judges a great deal of fun, and the winner was Robert Waterhouse, of Kingsbridge Comprehensive School, in Devon, who was also last year's winner, who devised a game called "Tamar Trader", which is based on trading in the Tamar Valley in the 18th/19th centuries. The winner in the under 11 category was Daniel Jones, of Filton Park, Bristol, for a game "Bosworth Trek".
Finally, the newcomer to the