Sunday, 23 March 2014

PAS Drops Ball: Grassroots Heritage Wisdom from Grunter's Hollow

Grunter's Hollow, the farmhouse (1826)
In contradistinction to Bloomsbury's left-behind Portable Antiquities Scheme, in my opinion, a SAFE award should be going to Grunter's Hollow Farm, and its occupant: 'Farmer Brown has something to tell the Portable Antiquities Scheme!', Heritage Journal 23.03.14. Farmer Silas points out what everybody but the PAS can see, that their 'Advice to finders' written in a Russell Square men's toilet cubicle on a rainy Thursday afternoon in 2003 is as he says: "waaay out of date ooh arr" and suggests the wording of a number of improvements proposed on the basis of the discussions provoked by recent events.
Shouldn’t those things have been added long ago – and certainly in the wake of the Crosby Garrett scandal or any of the subsequent ones including the recent Kent one? Why haven’t they? And why does it fall to an octogenarian Salopian farmer to call for it to be done? It’s not me who is being paid to give advice to finders. Anyway, can you make the changes without any further delay – before another spade-happy hero digs up what he shouldn’t and comes asking the poor taxpayer for even more money and saying the state financed advice bureau hadn’t told him what he should have done? As a taxpayer I’m not sure who annoys me most, him or you, but I think probably you as you know I’m right. 
 Oh, they know, that's why they'll pretend they never really saw that post, because they are "too busy" to use social media to interact with their audience. Too busy trying to get more money to interact with their audience. More and more money however does not really seem to be accompanied by increasing quality of PAS outreach where it is needed to prevent damage and information loss. Who'll say that is not the case?

UPDATE 23.03.14

and to make the point perfectly we read the following on a metal detectorist's blog today, according to this defiant blogger,  Heritage Action is "still churning out his usual brand of drivel [...] does make one good point though. If you discover a hoard [...]" No, he makes several good points but about the first two the people using artefact hunting machines to trash sites are in denial.  This is where PAS should step in.

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