Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Investors in People

Today we have heard that Ironbridge Archaeology have been officially recognised as Investors in People. This recognition means that we meet the Investors in People standard. In the jargon of the Investors in People scheme, this specifically means that...

1. A strategy for improving the performance of the organisation is clearly defined and understood.
2. Learning and development is planned to achieve the organisation's objectives.
3. Strategies for managing people are designed to promote equality of opportunity in the development of the organisation's people.
4. The capabilities managers need to lead, manage and develop people effectively are clearly defined and understood.
5. Managers are effective in leading, managing and developing people.
6. Peoples' contribution to the organisation is recognised and valued.
7. People are encouraged to take ownership and responsibility by being involved in decision making.
8. People learn and develop effectively.
9. Investment in people improves the performance of the organisation.
10. Improvements are continually made to the way people are managed and developed.

Although we thought we were doing this anyway it is nice to be inspected by an external body and found to be up to scratch.

Monday, December 19, 2005

Merry Christmas!

On Friday we had our Christmas lunch, at the Kynnersley Arms.

Sophie Watson, Paul Belford, Emma Dwyer, Simon Roper and William Mitchell

Our association with the 'Kyn' goes back to May 2001 when we were digging holes with the Time Team. On that occasion we actually managed to keep control of the mad TV archaeologists, and the results were very interesting.

Beneath the pub are the remains of a blast furnace, built in the mid 17th century and in use for over 100 years. Our work with the Time Team discovered the hearth of this furnace and the extent of associated features. Since then the landlady - Jane Wood - has been extremely busy with local groups fundraising and restoring the remains of the furnace and the 18th century mill machinery.

As usual we went for our Christmas lunch this year with our colleagues at the Ironbridge Gorge Museum library and archives and with the Ironbridge Institute.

John Powell, Jenny Bill, Joanne Smith (Library) and Janice Fletcher (Institute).

Friday, December 16, 2005

Contemporary Archaeology

Although we have been doing work on the 20th and 21st century archaeology of many of our sites, we have only recently developed an explicit approach to 'contemporary archaeology'. Following recent discussion in the contemporary archaeology community we have decided to set up an entirely new blog devoted to the subject of contemporary archaeology.

The first 'project' to feature - appropriately enough given the time of year - is an exercise in 'Postal Archaeology' undertaken by Emma Dwyer and Simon Roper.

Thursday, December 15, 2005


We have been monitoring the partial demolition of a former iron foundry site at Stourbridge. The site was built in the late 18th century and was one of the larger foundries in the west midlands during the industrial period. It sadly closed in the early 21st century, and now forms part of the canal-side redevelopment here. These photos were taken last week.

A crisp frosty morning.

Inside the main foundry building - cold and quiet today but only a few years ago a scene of heat and activity.

One of the buildings associated with the foundry.

This Grade II* listed 18th century building has been appropriated as an artistic canvas by members of the local community. We are recording this graffiti as part of the project. Current conservation ethos is likely to require that this building is restored to a point in time that is not December 2005, thus removing this period of the site's development from the official narrative.

Clear blue winter skies.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Jackfield Mill Building

Some cosy Christmas views of the Mill Building at Jackfield, as the final stage of recording was being undertaken last week. Some photos taken last month can be found by scrolling down or going here.

This is the south wall of the west pan room.

This is William posing for the camera!

This is the lid of a colour jar, with the word 'yellow' written across it.