What will you be doing at Basing House?
I am lucky to be one of the co-directors of the project. I worked at Basing House a couple of years ago, helping with the Heritage Lottery Funded project, and I have been dying to return to the site, and to work again with the excellent Hampshire County Council Museums Service team. I’ll be generally running around checking that everyone is okay, and that the students and the fab volunteers that we have are all getting the best experience possible. I specialise in outreach and museums, so I’m hoping to get involved in that side of things.
What you are hoping to experience at Basing House?
As well as the excavation, we’re planning lots of additional sub-projects, including supplementing the surveying that the team from our Archaeology Department carried out with students earlier this year. I’m hoping to find out lots more about this fascinating site. In particular, I’m very excited about the potential of finally getting an overview of the history of the archaeology that’s happened at the site: A sort of historiography of archaeological excavation of Basing House. I think that Dan is very interested in this too, so we’ll have to get our heads together and plot something.
What’s the unique thing that attracts you to Basing House?
The fact that the House has such a long history of settlement. A few weeks ago, the building contractors found a Mesolithic handaxe. How cool is that?! The site has been almost constantly occupied, and it multi-phase, I can’t wait to see what kinds of things we unearth!
What you do when you’re not at Basing House?
I am currently part way through a PhD which is focusing on the impact that the web is having on the work of regional museums. In addition to this, I am based in the Archaeological Computing Research Group. I have a background working for regional museums and in elearning. Alongside Gareth and Adam, I co-direct the OuRTI project (http://ourti.org/), which is exploring methods for adoption and adaption of open source applications for community groups for archaeology and history.
My blog is The Cultural Heritage Web (http://theculturalheritageweb.wordpress.com/), and I tweet at @nicoleebeale