A volunteer holding coins at the British Museum
A PAS volunteer at the British Museum. Copyright: Portable Antiquities Scheme. License: CC-BY.

PASt Explorers is a Portable Antiquities Scheme (PAS) project funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for five years. The aim of PASt Explorers is to create Community Finds Recording Teams (CRFTs) by recruiting and training volunteers from local communities around England and Wales. These teams work with their local Finds Liaison Officers (FLOs) to record local finds onto the PAS database. They also help promote the activities of the PAS to new audiences in their areas, recruiting others to volunteer with the PAS and engage with the history and archaeology of their local areas. PASt Explorers keeps a list of current volunteering opportunities with the PAS.

As part of the PASt Explorers project, a new section of the PAS website, the County Pages, is now devoted to the work of the CFRTs and to the history and archaeology of the local area. The County Pages are intended to be a useful source of information; here, you can find user-friendly information on your county in the form of blogs, features about finds and general research, finds recording guides and other helpful resources.

The first set of County Pages to be launched is Leicestershire, where the pilot recruitment and training programmes for PASt Explorers took place in 2013. The other counties will be gradually rolled out. The County Pages will continue to develop throughout the PASt Explorers project, and we welcome feedback on user experience and suggestions for new contents and features. We hope you enjoy exploring the County Pages and discovering more about the work of the Portable Antiquities Scheme, its Finds Liaison Officers and volunteers, and the finds they record.