Thursday, 26 February 2015

PACHI PAS FOI: Internal emails - David Gill Gets a Thrill?

"I know we don't normally engage with Paul Barford" 
Eleanor Ghey

Topic J: Beau Street Hoard (24th November 2014)
Pretty amazing,  Eleanor Ghey [Research Assistant Department: Portable Antiquities and Treasure] writes to Michael Lewis of PAS (24th November 2014, 9:00 Subject: Beau St Hoard Criticism). She says that  she is bothered by comments being made on the Beau Street Hoard, and gives a link to Looting Matters - David Gill's blog with a reference to a talk given by Verity Anthony. Dr Lewis refuses to open David's link, justifying it "I am not opening it as he gets a thrill when he sees people using the BM IP address, I'd just ignore it". This is not the first time that the PAS has ignored David Gill's concerns about the Scheme, the way they avoided addressing the issues raised by his PIA contribution is particularly noteworthy and a massive home goal.

I do wonder about the pompous mentality of people that suggest that Professor Gill or anyone else would get a "thrill" if they thought somebody in the BM was reading their blog. Just who do they think they are? What ridiculous self-important people some of them must be. Dr Lewis copied his response to the research assistant to Sam Moorhead and Roger Bland. The latter seems to have got the wrong end of the stick entirely - he obviously did not click on the link either "As Michael says, after many years of this type of treatment from Barford we've learnt that it's generally best not to respond to him [who? Barford or Gill?], as he will always have the last word".

I guess if you are a BM demigod then entering a debate where you are not guaranteed the last word and ability to shout down your opponent is not an option you will consider. Demigods have their image to consider, after all, people must be "thrilled" when the demigods read what they have to say. This is really pathetic - the fragile egos of Bloomsbury on show.

I have updated my own post on the Beau Street hoard in the light of the information which was not made available at the time by the ultra-secretive and touchy BMPAS demigods - but it is a shame that through their pompous self-regard and lack of contact they could not have shared that information back in November last year. That is what they are paid for, to share information with the public on portable antiquities matters.

Now perhaps they will tell us why the records from HLF-funded work within the Coins and Medals Department of the BM on a hoard excavated by a commercial archaeology unit is included in a database of non-Treasure finds voluntarily reported by members of the public when they have no funds to record all of the finds handed in for recording by metal detectorists each year? Can they tell us that? Of course they can, will they do that? Unlikely, isn't it. Demigods answer to nobody, not even the public that pays for their ivory tower chairs.

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