PAS offers a win win situation – there are no losers says Estelle Morris

Published: 16 years ago Author:

Yesterday, at a conference to celebrate the work of the PAS and look to its future, Estelle Morris (Minister for the Arts) praised the work of the Scheme, saying it provides a 'win win situation' for all and that 'there are no losers'!

She went on to say now that future funding for PAS has been secured (until April 2008) 'we can feel confident that if the Scheme goes on the way it has so far there is absolutely no reason why it should not continue well beyond that'.

 Mrs Morris particularly welcomed the educational potential of PAS. She said that archaeological finds offer a tangible link with the past - 'objects teach far more than words in books'. 'There is something exciting about finding Treasure which take me back to my childhood - not just value, but who put it there and why did they put it there'. She went on to say, 'the reason that PAS get so much publicity is that there is something deep inside all of us that gets exited about the past'. 

Following this Mrs Morris launched the online Anglo-Saxon village of West Mucking (, which is an eLearning resource aimed at 7 to 11 year olds. The village is a virtual environment that learners can explore and learn about the Early Medieval period. It shows aspects of everyday life in the sixth century AD, from the houses that people lived in to the day to day activities that they carried out. Learners also have the chance to explore the site as it is in the modern day too - hidden beneath ploughed land. By carrying out their own virtual fieldwork they can gather clues about the past and the people that once lived there.

Conference Digest - Looking to the Future

Setting the Scene

Andrew Burnett (Deputy Director of the British Museum) welcomed delegates to the British Museum and spoke about the support the British Museum has given PAS.

Chris Batt (Chief Executive of the Museums, Libraries & Archives Council) talked about MLAs role running PAS and welcomed DCMS funding for its future. He also introduced the Arts Minister.


Estelle Morris (Minister for the Arts, DCMS) talked about the success of PAS and its educational potential. She launched the online Anglo-Saxon village of West Mucking (see )

Gill Chitty (Hawkshead Consultancy) talked about a recent review of the PAS and made some recommendations for talking the PAS forward.

Philip Wise (Curator of Archaeology, Colchester Castle Museum) talked about managing the PAS locally from the perspective of the Society of Museum Archaeologists.

Advancing Archaeological Knowledge 

Paul Cuming (SMR Manager, Kent County Council) talked about the benefits of PAS data for enhancing the SMR.

Andrew Richardson (Kent Finds Liaison Officer) talked about involving the public in archaeological excavation and gave examples from Kent.

Andrew David (Head of Archaeological Science, English Heritage) talked about the benefits of survey work and excavation to understand detector finds.

Education and Learning

Ceinwen Paynton (PAS Education Officer) talked about the educational potential of the Scheme and plans for its future educational work.

Anna Marshall (South & West Yorkshire Finds Liaison Officer) talked about learning through the PAS, giving examples of the educational work of FLOs.

Rod Couper (Mental Health Social Worker) talked about using PAS and archaeology (particularly field-walking) to benefit the mentally ill.

Looking to the Future

Jim Spriggs (Conservator, York Archaeological Trust) talked about YATs work providing conservation advice for PAS and developing resources and talks for finders.

David Barwell (Chairman, National Council for Metal Detecting) talked about empowering finders and working with PAS to encourage liaison and dialogue between archaeologists and finders.

Roger Bland (Head of Portable Antiquities) talked about talking PAS forward and plans to improve the efficiency and management of PAS.

Contact: Michael Lewis +44 (0) 207 323 8611

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