Tuesday, 16 June 2015

PAS Meltdown: Gone in All but Name?

Coineys just don't get it, over on the IAPN lobbyist's blog, they are raising the question "PAS Under Threat?" and blaming what has happened to it in the past six weeks on "funding cuts". They are not using primary sources, the sole source quoted is an anonymous coiney article published in Germany (Römisch-Germanische Kommission im Frankfurt am Main, NB Dan Pett is one of the authors - is this his text?). Despite what that article says, what has happened is by no means solely due to financial cuts (though they play a part in crippling the Scheme, as they have for coming up to a decade now). Roger Bland has faced far more hurdles than a six percent budget cut and always found extra funding. His resignation was due to something else. Information I have received point to a cause related to internal BM politics which should never have been allowed to influence a strategic national scheme like this.

I'll write more at a later date, there are still several things unclear to me. I hope to be able to put something more definitive up at the weekend. But things look very bleak for the dedicated team of metal-detectorist friendly people that worked for the PAS. From what I can determine, this LVA-PAS (Lava-PAS, PAS Meltdown) is not at all the positive thing it is being made out to be.

From what I have ascertained so far, it seems to me that the PAS ceased to exist as a coherent entity on 1st May 2015. PAS is not so much under threat, but de facto gone in all but name. Or is at least in hiatus if the changes can be reversed, which they jolly well should be unless England and Wales change the law on artefact hunting. I bet nobody who'd come across what I have written on the subject would ever have thought they'd read Paul Barford saying "bring back the PAS", but what has happened seems to me a bigger disaster from all points of view than PAS ever could have been. In Bonkers Britain, an unrealised  heritage policy has just gone down the plughole, leaving just froth swirling on the dirty bathwater and a very bad smell too.The baby long since vanished.

Vignette: Shrinking influence


kyri said...

i agree paul,the PAS is not perfect but it is MUCH better than nothing.this is something i have been saying for years.why dont you just ask dan pett to let us all know what is going on.he has been very approachable in the past when i had discussions with him on twitter.do you think Neil mcgregor leaving the BM has anything to do with all this.

Paul Barford said...

Well, they will tell you that the PAS is continuing, so not "nothing", but it is not the PAS as it was supposed to be and could have been.

As for Dan, he was not speaking to me before (after the "Troll" nonsense), he's hardly likely to do so now, besides which he's affected too and he's hardly in a position to speak candidly about his current employer - or his former boss, I do not think it would be right to ask him to.

Nobody is being "approachable", these changes happened SIX WEEKS ago and nobody said a thing, though there were flutterings in the ether. It turns out that the whole thing began back in March.

Yes, this has a lot to do with Neil McGregor and some behind the scenes goings on...

The BM seems to think this is purely an internal matter, but it affects a national scheme and a lot of stakeholeders, so the BM owes us all some kind of clarification.

kyri said...

hmm,just read on dan petts twitter feed he has 3 months off[parental leave]starting today.i messaged him about PAS lets see what comes back.i have heard on the grapevine,in the past,that not everyone was happy with mcGregor at the BM.

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