Monthly Archives: August 2016

A free training weekend at Orford Ness: 3-4 September 2016 (residential and non-residential places)

Owned by the National Trust, and once the home to a highly secretive atomic weapons and radar testing establishment, Orford Ness is a large shingle spit with an extremely dynamic coastline and plenty of archaeological features that need recording. Through this training weekend, and along with one we carried out in July, the National Trust and CITiZAN are keen to develop a team of volunteers who’ll be able to continue to record the wealth of remains across the Ness. As with all CITiZAN training sessions, there is no cost for attending.

Residential places

Six volunteers who came with us in July are returning so we still have six residential places left for the weekend. We’ll be staying at the National Trust’s basecamp on Orford Ness, in bunk beds in three shared dormitories. We’ll provide Saturday evening supper and breakfast and lunch on Sunday. You’ll need to bring a sleeping bag and packed lunch for Saturday, and let us know of any food allergies or dietary requirements. Saturday evening entertainment includes, board games, puzzles and possibly even a film!Attendees for the whole weekend will receive a CPD certificate and a CITiZAN edition Archaeology Skills Passport.

Non residential places

There’s also 6 places for people who’d like to join us just for Saturday, returning to Orford Quay by the public ferry on Saturdayafternoon.

We’re awaiting firm confirmation of details for the weekend but the outline itinerary is as follows:

 Saturday

Meet at Orford Quay at 8.30 for the boat over to the Ness. After setting down our bags at Base Camp we’ll carry out some rapid recording of some of the remains along Stony Ditch. As the tides rises we’ll go back to Base Camp for coffee, biscuits and presentations about the project, the site and the work for the weekend. On Saturday afternoon we plan to create a measured survey and written and photographic record of the remains of a summer house (earthworks and garden remains) that pre-date military use of the island. We’re just awaiting final confirmation from the National Trust that this will be possible as it’s sometimes used as one of their bird ringing sites: if not then there’s plenty of other interesting sites we have lined up to work on.

The last ferry leaves the Ness at 5pm, so if you’re not staying overnight you’ll need to catch this one at the latest.

Sunday

On Sunday morning we’ll finish recording the site, then have an early lunch. At midday we’ll have a tour of the lighthouse (not owned by the National Trust). This stands beside the coastguard station and other features that we recorded on the training weekend in July, so after the tour we’ll revisit the site and record any changes with our app. We aim to finish at around 3.30 on Sunday.

We’ll be getting a lift to Base Camp when we arrive on Saturday, but during the weekend we’ll be walking between Base Camp and the sites, both c1.3km (3/4 mile) one way. There are no facilities on Orford Ness, apart from at Base Camp, to which we will have access during the day.

If you have any questions, and to book a place please contact Lara : lband@mola.org.uk. We appreciate that it’s quite short notice for the event, but hope you’ll be able to join us!