Why did I start volunteering for the PAS?
I wanted to study to be an archaeologist when I left school but things never quite went to plan. Throughout my early teens I was obsessed with ancient history and in particular Egyptology. Encouraged by my Dad, who loved to talk about ancient Egypt and the Incas, I would avidly read books and watch TV programmes on the subject. Aged 13, I was fortunate enough to go on a school trip taking in sights such as Ephesus, Delphi, Giza and Cairo where I visited the Tutankhamun exhibition, (He was up there with Duran Duran for me in those days!) which made a lasting impression. 30 years later, I decided to take a taster course in Archaeology with the University of Leicester and wanted to find a pastime that would enable me to continue learning. I saw an email from BMAG, looking for volunteers for PAS and decided to apply, not really thinking I would get the call. I was thrilled when I was called in for an interview and got the role.
What period of the past most interests me?
There are so many to choose from. I love ancient history but since joining PAS, I’ve developed a fondness for Roman and Medieval periods as well. Recording objects that reflect the minutiae of a past, everyday life, brings you closer to that period and makes you think about the human aspect and the context in which the object was used.
Which objects most interest me?
Sadly all objects interest me! From horse shoes to spindle whorls, but I particularly like jewellery and coins/tokens. I haven’t recorded much jewellery but I like that they are usually personal items that would have been worn and loved by a person. Most of the coins I’ve identified have been difficult to read, so it always feels like an achievement to find out their identities and the stories behind them.
Which of the finds I have recorded is my favourite?
A Bronze aged knife – A fan shaped blade with a beautiful green patina. There was a piece of wood still in the socket. It is incredible that I could hold something that old.
What is my favourite historical site or monument?
Again there are so many, but probably Ephesus in Turkey. I remember being star struck as a 13 year old, after being told Anthony and Cleopatra drove along the Arcadian Way.
What are my other interests outside archaeology?
I love the countryside and walking. We have a Golden Retriever who likes to take us out to greet his public and two cats that enjoy eating out and bringing their food home – usually alive. I also like crafting, quizzes and visiting art galleries.