Perks of being a PAS volunteer

My career as an archaeologist has been somewhat intermittent: I currently work as an archaeologist only one day a week and purely for the love of it. I’m a volunteer with the Portable Antiquities Scheme, based at Liverpool museum with the Finds Liaison officer there, Vanessa Oakden. I’m the Thursday girl, and usually help out by digitally manipulating images of the finds (mainly bought in by metal detectorists) on photoshop, so they can be included on the PAS database. With over one million objects and counting, this is an eclectic, fascinating and ever expanding corpus of the ‘what on earth is it?’ and workaday; the lost and discarded; the plough trashed and serendipitously preserved, see

My Day of Archaeology was a special day – a training session with behind the scenes access- including tours and talks – at the British Museum. An early start in Chester, and three hours later I am trying to look nonchalant negotiating the London Underground, like I do this everyday, and am not a tourist: an impression I failed to sustain as I got a bit confused and failed to fast track myself through the excited queues outside the museum, with the result I was only just in time to find the meeting room, get my volunteer badge and a warm welcome off Claire, the resources officer, before the programme began. (more…)