Thank You PASt Explorers!

Today marks the final day of our PASt Explorers project and, whilst we are sad to say goodbye to the project, we are immensely proud of what has been achieved. 

Over the past 5 years, thanks to funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, the PASt Explorers project has helped to expand and support our network of dedicated volunteers by providing them with a comprehensive programme of training and support. 

Image of a group of adults seated around a long table.
PASt Explorers volunteers hard at work at one of our final training sessions. Copyright: Portable Antiquities Scheme, License: CC-BY

Since the project began, we have run 159 training sessions covering topics from database entry to digital finds photography and more specialist sessions such as medieval coins and Roman brooches. We currently have over 370 volunteers either working in-house alongside their Finds Liaison Officers or working remotely to record their own finds onto the database. We have also created the County Pages portal – an online hub for finds and archaeology in the local area so that people can more easily engage with their local heritage. The County Pages are also home to our Finds Recording Guides, of which we’ve published 61 (and counting!).

None of this would have been possible without the help and support of a wide range of people and organisations. We’d like to thank in particular The National Lottery Heritage Fund for making the project possible; the PASt Explorers project team for all their hard work in delivering the project; the Finds Liaison Officers for providing first class support to their volunteer teams; and of course to the volunteers themselves for giving so much time and effort to the Scheme and for doing such outstanding work.

We’d also like to thank all of those people who have lent their time and expertise to train our volunteers, and to all the museums and institutions that have hosted our sessions. 

We have thoroughly enjoyed working with you all on this project and it has been a joy to see so many people get enthused by the wonder of archaeological small finds. Keep up the good work and we look forward to seeing the foundations laid by PASt Explorers blossom and grow.

Logo of The National Lottery Heritage Fund