29th September 2014:
OA is happy to announce its involvement in a collaborative knowledge exchange project with the School of Archaeology of Oxford University and government planning archaeologists in the county.
The six-month pilot scheme, entitled 'The Past People of Oxfordshire', is funded by Higher Education Innovation Funding (HEIF), and aims to improve the way in which burials are excavated and sampled for biochemical research, and to develop our current understanding of the nature, scale and geographic distribution of the many thousands of burials that have already been excavated in Oxfordshire, dating from the Neolithic to Victorian periods.
To this end, a database is being compiled, pulling together much needed information on burial practices, osteological analysis of the skeletons, archival details and publications on each site. This record will be a valuable resource for government planning archaeologists (who determine the archaeological requirements of the planning process preceding development in the region) and museum curators, as well as for commercial archaeologists compiling environmental assessments and archaeological site reports, and for academics planning future research.
When completed, the database will be available to all by open access on the OA website. Public engagement is central to this project, and through a series of talks and workshops we hope to give the living people of Oxfordshire an opportunity to engage with those from the past.