Oxford Brookes Archaeology and Heritage

  • OBAH Services
  • Services

    Uniquely, we combine specialist knowledge and research, with a primary focus on the the Arabian Peninsula, and also Europe, Africa, and southeast Asia, with considerable experience in commercial, developer-funded archaeological and geoarchaeological projects in the UK.

    This combination of university-based, research knowledge and grass-roots archaeological experience means that we are able to tackle a wide range of problems spanning different disciplines whilst ensuring that much of this work is carried out under one roof.

  • We carry out baseline surveys of areas scheduled for development, providing guidance on how to mitigate damage to non-renewable heritage resources, and how to minimise potential expenses and delays to the developer. In such operations we work closely with local heritage and environmental agencies to ensure that historical and archaeological remains are identified, recorded and protected, that legal requirements are observed and that local sensibilities are respected.

    Our work includes:

    • desk-based assessments
    • site visits to discuss matters at the very earliest stages of development
    • baseline archaeological and landscape surveys
    • sub-surface deposit modelling in advance of archaeological excavation
    • AIA and EIA reports including recommending mitigation strategies/recommendations
    • palaeoenvironmental modelling and analysis using satellite image tools (GIS and Remote Sensing)

    In the event that historical structures or archaeological deposits are likely to be damaged or exposed due to planned development, we can provide mitigation by conducting rescue operations. Our skilled project managers and project officers will ensure that excavation is carried out in both a timely and highly detailed manner, allowing our clients peace of mind during this part of the process.

    Off-site, the archive derived from excavation (eg. drawings, photographs and data), any recovered cultural material (artefacts), and scientific samples (e.g. radiocarbon samples) will be analysed in detail. Our staff are experienced at working to deadlines in cooperation with developers and other stakeholders. As with baseline surveys and any other fieldwork, we take care to conduct such operations in collaboration with local heritage and environmental organisations.

    In the UK we work to standards set out in Planning Policy guidelines.

    • Assessment and costing of work required, including logistics of carrying out archaeological excavation.
    • Rescue excavation including detailed on-site recording.
    • Collection of archaeological material for off-site examination and interpretation.
    • Recording of standing architecture.

    Human bones require special treatment, not only for ethical reasons and to address sensitivities regarding recent burials, but also because of the quality of information about the past that they can provide. Our team includes a bones specialist (Simon Underdown), enabling us to deal with all the complexities and analyses that arise.

    • Forensic anthropology.
    • Palaeopathology.
    • Demographic analysis.
    • DNA analysis.

    Our team members, particularly Robert Carter, have a track record in providing historical, artefactual, curatorial and archaeological consultancy to museums and museum design companies who work in Arabia. The museum scene in the Gulf is growing at an unprecedented rate, but the pool of experts with in-depth knowledge of the region is limited. We provide such knowledge at a level of international academic expertise.

    • Thematic research on all aspects of Arabian history and prehistory.
    • Identification, dating and description of artefacts.
    • Copywriting text panels for display cases and story boards.

    Our team members have considerable expertise in artefact and material culture studies, especially in pottery. These skills are not only useful in the field, enabling us to identify and date archaeological remains, but also contribute to original research.

    • Identification of lithics and pottery sherds from a wide range of spatial and temporal contexts.
    • Drafting reports concerning the significance of such archaeological assemblages.
    • Incorporating these datasets into in-house reports and research papers.
    We provide background research for any organisation requiring in-depth knowledge of the history, archaeology and peoples of Arabia. The team leader, Robert Carter, has published on numerous aspects of the ancient and recent history of Arabia, and is also Chair of the Seminar for Arabian Studies, and secretary of the British Foundation for the Study of Arabia.

    The five day course will cover the following subjects:

    • Excavation and recording techniques
    • Archaeological data and archive management
    • Site survey procedure (eg. using Total Station and GPS survey equipment
    • Extraction and processing of finds
    • Georarchaeological techniques
    • Environmental archaeology

    Course Costs

    The cost of the training course is £995 per attendee which includes all training and support. Upon completion of the course, participants will be presented with a certifcate of attendance detailing the training that has been undertaken. Attendees will also have the opportunity to complete one of our summer school courses in 2012, which will provide the option of expanding upon the material delivered during the training course by completing an individual assignment, for which 20 CATS points can be awarded.

    Additionally, tailor-made courses can also be offered for groups or on a one-to-one basis. Please contact us to discuss your specific needs or for more information regarding our bespoke training courses.