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Annual Reports

CPAT Trustees' Annual Report 1999/00


INTRODUCTION

The Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust is a company limited by guarantee and not having a share capital (Registered No 1212455) and Registered Charity (Registered No 508301). The governing document is the Memorandum and Articles of Association as incorporated on 14 May 1975.

Principal Activity
The principal activity of the Trust is the education of the public in archaeology and the provision of archaeological services to the community.

SUMMARY OF THE TRUST'S AIMS

The Trust is one of the four Archaeological Trusts established in Wales in the 1970s. It is both a limited company and a registered charity. The Trust works closely with other national, regional and local bodies, to help record, interpret and protect all aspects of the historic environment. Its main field of operations is in the Clwyd-Powys area, namely the county of Powys and the local authority areas formerly in Clwyd - Denbighshire, Flintshire, Wrexham County Borough Council and the eastern part of Conwy County Borough Council.

SUMMARY OF THE TRUST'S ACTIVITIES DURING THE YEAR

Archaeological Research and Investigation
The Trust continued to undertake a wide variety of projects in the field, usually in response to proposed developments or to enhance the archaeological record. As in previous years these included rescue excavations, building recording projects, desktop assessments, field evaluations, field surveys and watching briefs. Examples of the types of project which were undertaken during the course of the year are given below. The names of the former counties of Brecknock, Radnor and Montgomery are used for convenience in the following text.

Projects funded by Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments included several pan-Wales initiatives, continuing from previous financial years. The Deserted Rural Settlements project in the Clwyd-Powys area continued into a fourth year, the primary objective of the project being to undertake a rapid survey of deserted medieval and later rural settlements for the purpose of record enhancement and conservation. The main focus of work during 1999/00 was to complete as far as possible the survey of sites in Brecknock which had been started in the previous financial year, and involved visiting and recording of over 360 sites in the field. Prehistoric Funerary and Ritual Sites Rapid assessment work was undertaken in Flintshire and Wrexham, continuing the work undertaken in the upper Severn Valley in 1997/98 and Denbighshire and eastern Conwy in 1998/99, again as part of a pan-Wales initiative being funded by Cadw. Work in 1999/00 included a rapid assessment of about 340 sites, including round barrows, ring-cairns, standing stones, stone circles and stone rows, principally for the purpose of Scheduled Ancient Monument enhancement. Historic Landscape Characterization As part of the continuing pan-Wales initiative, work was undertaken on the Vale of Montgomery and the Holywell Common - Halkyn Mountain area - two of the outstanding historic landscape areas defined in the Historic Landscapes Register produced by Cadw in conjunction with the Countryside Council for Wales (CCW) and ICOMOS UK - with the aim of identifying significant historic elements within the landscape which may be worthy of preservation or management. The historic landscape area of the Vale of Montgomery straddles the national boundary between England and Wales, and the Trust is grateful to the assistance given by Shropshire County Council in providing information about archaeological sites and historic buildings in their area. The Welsh Royal Commission provided help with aerial photographic evidence in the case of the predominantly mining landscape of the Holywell Common - Halkyn Mountain historic landscape area.

Projects funded by the Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales included Aerial Photography . This involved some recording of cropmark sites in the summer in the Walton area in Radnorshire and the Tanat Valley in Montgomeryshire and flights during the winter in northern Montgomeryshire and in the Wrexham and Ruabon Mountain areas. Much of the aerial photographic recording was undertaken on behalf of the Trust by our former Director, Mr Chris Musson, although the opportunity was taken to include training in aerial photographic techniques for one member of the Trust's staff as part of the programme.

Projects funded by other bodies included the following: Trannon Moor Continued survey work on archaeological sites in area of existing windfarm in Montgomeryshire, funded by developer via Powys County Council. Moel Findeg Archaeological assessment of a proposed local nature reserve in Flintshire, on behalf of Denbighshire County Council. Vyrnwy Survey Continued rapid identification survey of archaeological sites in vicinity of Lake Vyrnwy, Montgomeryshire, for record enhancement and conservation purposes, with funding from Severn-Trent Water. St Asaph Cathedral Recording of the floor of the south transept, on behalf of the Cathedral Chapter. Worthenbury Churchyard Archaeological evaluation in advance of the proposed extension to St Deiniol's Church, on behalf of the parish council, within the area of the Anglo-Saxon settlement recorded in Domesday Book. Talerddig-Machynlleth Gas Pipeline Desktop assessment and field survey along the line of the proposed pipeline. Llanymynech Golf Course Evaluation and watching brief before and during improvement work on the 10th, 13th, 15th and 16th greens, within the area of the Iron Age hillfort. Borras Quarry Archaeological desktop assessment and field survey of proposed extension to stone quarry, on behalf of Tarmac plc. Criccin Cross Small-scale excavations at the site of the medieval cross, on behalf of Denbighshire County Council and Cadw, in advance of a programme of repair work.

Education and publication
All the Trust's activities contribute directly or indirectly towards a greater understanding of the historic environment of the Clwyd-Powys area and every opportunity is taken to undertake educational work with schools and the general public. Help was given in the preparation of a number of display panels about the Trust's work for an exhibition at Bodelwyddan Castle, mounted in association with Denbighshire County Council in conjunction with the Council for British Archaeology's National Archaeology Day. Significant developments were made to the Trust's website during the course of the year, and as a result of financial help from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments much of the site is now bilingual. The website, which can be reached at www.cpat.org.uk , includes a considerable amount of information about the Trust's activities, and is continuing to be useful in providing archaeological information about the Clwyd-Powys area and in publicising the Trust's activities and the services it provides to the community. In due course the website will provide fuller details of all the projects mentioned in this report. A number of student placements were arranged during the course of the year, including a postgraduate student undertaking the Oxford University Diploma in Professional Archaeology, two second-year undergraduate students reading archaeology at Nottingham University, and work experience placements from Powys Training and Shrewsbury High School. Amongst other activities, experience and training was given in computer applications relating to the maintenance and development of the Sites and Monuments Record maintained by the Trust (see further below)

Over 30 project and topic reports were produced during the course of the year for limited circulation. Short reports on individual projects undertaken by the Trust are generally summarised in Archaeology in Wales, published annually by the Council for British Archaeology: Wales, as well as in a number of national period journals including Britannia and Medieval Archaeology. Other publications by Trust staff during the course of the year included a booklet on the further survey work undertaken on the Neolithic pit circle at Hindwell Radnorshire (published by the Trust with the help of grant aid from the European Commission and Cadw), the final report on the excavations within the medieval town of New Radnor (published in Archaeological Journal), and a report on Neolithic and Bronze Age finds at Hendre Rhydymwyn, Flintshire, which appeared in a book entitled Grooved Ware in Britain and Ireland published by the Neolithic Studies Group and Oxbow Books.

Archaeological advice and information
With the help of funding from the Royal Commission the Trust maintains an archive and computerized record of sites, finds, historic buildings and areas of archaeological importance known as the Regional Sites and Monuments Record (SMR), covering Powys, part of Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, and Wrexham. The main purposes of the record are to provide advice about the archaeological implications of planning policies and developments, advice about the management of archaeological sites and landscapes, and to serve as a resource for academic research and for initiatives concerning the preservation, interpretation and presentation of the archaeology and historic landscapes of Wales. The total number of entries in the main computerised SMR record now stands at 37,300 of which 2,250 new records were added and 2,730 existing records were edited during the course of the year, new information being gathered from recent fieldwork and from published sources. The record has now been formally adopted for planning purposes by all the planning authorities in the Clwyd-Powys area - Conwy County Borough Council, Denbighshire County Council, Flintshire County Council, Powys County Council, and Wrexham County Borough Council. The regular exchange of archaeological data continues to be made with the Royal Commission and the three other three Welsh Archaeological Trusts who currently contribute to ENDEX, the joint index of records of archaeological sites, finds and historic buildings and industrial monuments in Wales held by the major partners.

With the help of funding from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments the Trust continued to provide management, Development Control and Strategic Planning Advice about all aspects of the historic environment throughout the Clwyd-Powys area to national and local planning authorities, public and private sector developers, and other local and national organisations. The Trust received notification of over 6,400 planning applications, highway scheme proposals and minerals applications from local authorities during the course of the year, all of which were checked to see whether they had significant archaeological implications. The Trust was also consulted on over 340 other development proposals outside the planning system including the following: Scheduled Ancient Monument Consent applications; the Tir Gofal scheme; Woodland Grant Scheme applications; Environment Agency capital and management schemes; the Bracken Challenge scheme; faculty applications affecting churches mainly in the dioceses of St Asaph and Brecon and Swansea; schemes proposed by various utility companies including Welsh Water, Severn Trent Water and the Wrexham Water Company, MANWEB, SWALEC, MEB, British Gas/Transco. Regular liaison meetings were also held with staff of the Forestry Authority, the Environment Agency and the Countryside Council for Wales. Significant staff time continued to be devoted to consultations on Forest Design Plans, Private Long Term Forestry Design Plans, and Local Environment Agency Design Plans (LEAP) prepared by the Environment Agency, including plans for the Teme and Middle Severn plans.

The Trust also continued to be consulted by local authorities on a number of strategic planning documents, including initial consultations on the Powys and Denbighshire County Council's Unitary Development Plans. Other consultations during the course of the year included the DETR/Welsh Assembly's Access to the Countryside proposals. Help and advice was also given on Denbighshire County Council's LANDMAP programme being undertaken in conjunction with the Countryside Council for Wales.

With the help of financial support from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments and the Countryside Council for Wales, major commitments continued to be made to providing archaeological advice resulting from applications to the Tir Gofal - the new all-Wales agri-environment scheme - for which the first round of applications were submitted in April 1999. During the course of the year comments were made on about 85 applications throughout the Clwyd-Powys area, and detailed management plans were drawn up relating to the historic landscape management aspects of about 35 farms.

The Trust continued to be involved in coordinating the Department of Culture, Media and Sport's pilot Portable Antiquities reporting scheme, supported by various bodies in Wales including the Council for Museums in Wales and the National Museums and Galleries of Wales. Further details of the scheme and the implications of the Treasure Act are given in the Trust's website.

A major development during the course of the year was the appointment of an Offa's Dyke Archaeological Management Officer post, with financial support shared by Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments and English Heritage. Following the establishment of the post in August 1999 the Trust has helped the Offa's Dyke Initiative involving various agencies on both sides of the dyke, up and down the border, including English Heritage, Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments, the Countryside Agency, the Countryside Council for Wales, Denbighshire County Council, Wrexham County Borough Council, Shropshire County Council, Powys County Council, Herefordshire County Council, Brecon Beacons National Park, Gloucestershire County Council, the Offa's Dyke Path Management Service, and the Offa's Dyke Association. The initiative has three broad aims - to raise awareness about the archaeological significance of this remarkable early medieval earthwork, to take forward schemes of practical conservation of the earthwork, and to encourage a more strategic and integrated long-term approach to the management of the dyke as a single monument. The project covers all surviving sections of Offa's Dyke in Wales and England together with other Scheduled Ancient Monuments along the line of the Offa's Dyke National Trail. The Offa's Dyke Initiative has arisen from growing concern about the long term future of Offa's Dyke in the light of a number of archaeological condition surveys over the last decade. Despite the landscape and historical significance of the monument, the 80 miles of surviving earthwork are increasingly threatened by erosion pressures ranging from visitor access (linked to the National Trail which follows much of the line of the dyke), to agricultural activities, development proposals and damage by burrowing animals. The conservation problem is exacerbated by the sheer geographical scale of the dyke as it runs through two countries and across a wide range of different modern environmental contexts. During the course of the year conservation, management and repair planning work was initiated on over 20 sites along the dyke in Wales and England, and two additional Scheduled Ancient Monuments on the Offa's Dyke National Trail.

MANAGEMENT AND ORGANISATION

The Trust is managed by a board of Trustees elected from the Trust Members at the Annual General Meeting. The Trustees met on four occasions during the course of the financial year, in April, June, September 1999 and January 2000. The Advisory Committee, comprising the Trustees, other Members co-opted by the Trustees, and an observer nominated by Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments. The Advisory Committee met on two occasions during the year, in April and September 1999. Nominations for membership is by invitation from local authorities, museums, local historical and archaeological societies, and other bodies with interests in the historic environment of Wales. Members normally meet once a year at the Annual General Meeting. A list of the Trustees, Committee Members, Members, Staff and Advisors during all or part of 1999/00 is given below.

SOURCES OF FUNDS

The Trust is grateful for the financial support it continues to receive from Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments, an Executive Agency of the Welsh Office, and the Royal Commission on Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales. Cadw provides a contribution to the Trust's administrative costs, within the terms of the Welsh Office's support for Voluntary Sector Organisations. Most of the remainder of the Trust's income came in the form of grant aid and contract awards from the public and private sectors, and is almost exclusively designated for the provision of archaeological services and for specific field or office-based projects within the Trust's annual programme of work.

TRUSTEES, COMMITTEE, MEMBERS, STAFF AND ADVISORS 1999/00

Trustees/Company Directors
Mrs F M Lynch Llewellyn, Chairman, University of Wales, Bangor
Dr J L Davies, Vice Chairman, University of Wales, Aberystwyth
Dr C J Arnold, University of Wales, Aberystwyth
Mr D F Petch, University of Liverpool
Mr D W L Rowlands, Llanerfyl

Advisory Committee
Dr S H R Aldhouse-Green, University of Wales College, Newport
Mr K S Brassil, National Museums and Galleries of Wales
Mr P Dorling, Brecon Beacons National Park
Dr E Plunkett Dillon, The National Trust
Mr D M Evans, Society of Antiquaries of London
Mrs F Gale, Denbighshire County Council
Mr S Grenter, Wrexham County Borough Council
Mr D F Keast, Powys County Council
Mrs Hilary Malaws, Royal Commission on the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales
Dr S Rees, observer for Cadw: Welsh Historic Monuments
Mr C J Spurgeon, Aberystwyth

Members
Miss J Ashton, Radnorshire Society
County Councillor G R Banks, Powys County Council
Miss E Bredsdorff, Powysland Museum
Mr R Brewer, National Museum of Wales
County Councillor Mrs S D Francis, Powys County Council
County Councillor Mrs B Greenaway, Wrexham County Borough Council
County Councillor Mr J H Hughes, Powys County Council
County Councillor Mrs I B Lewis, Powys County Council
Mr C R Musson, former Director, CPAT
Mrs N P Parker, Flintshire Historical Society
Mrs J Peirson Jones, Council for Museums in Wales
Mrs M T Read, Denbighshire Historical Society
County Councillor K A Stevens, Conwy County Borough Council

Staff
Administration Team
Mr W J Britnell, Director
Mrs J E Britnell, Administrative Officer
Mrs M Godsell, Finance Assistant

Curatorial Team
Mr C H R Martin, Principal Curatorial Officer
Mr I Bapty, Offa's Dyke Archaeological Management Officer
Mr P Copleston, Heritage Management Officer
Ms J L Mitcham, Sites and Monuments Records Officer
Ms W J Owen, Senior Project Assistant/Development Control Assistant
Mr M Walters, Development Control Officer

Project Team
Mr R J Silvester, Head of Field Services
Mr N W Jones, Projects Officer
Mr W G Owen, Senior Project Assistant
Mr R Hankinson, Senior Project Assistant

Accountants
Tranter Lowe, Oakengates

Auditors
Whittingham Riddell, Welshpool

Solicitors
Garrard Mitchell, Shrewsbury


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