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Kent Archaeological Review extract

The Bromley Archaeological Training School.
by Wendy Dolphin.

The Bromley Archaeological Training School, run jointly by the West Kent Border Archaeological Group and the Bromley Adult Education Centre, has now completed its fifth year with continued success. This scheme, the first of its kind in Kent, was started in 1967 and since then it is estimated that more than 300 students have been introduced to the disciplines of practical archaeology. Their work in this field and particularly to that of rescue operations in Kent and beyond has proved to be of great assistance.

As in previous years the course was directed by Mr B J Philp, assisted by both Mr G B Clewley and Edna Mynott. It consists of three stages: Beginners, Advanced and Research. Students attend lectures from October to April, and in the first year, or Beginners' class, they are given a general account of the prehistoric and historic background to Kent archaeology. The second (Advanced) year introduces the processing of excavated material, the fundamentals of stratigraphy and site drawing, and the discussion of finds. The third (Research) year concentrates on the preparation of material for publication, and it must be added that in the last few years their contribution to this all important work has been outstanding. Several of the finished drawings have been published in the KAR.

Each summer finds the students gathered on the Lower Warbank site at Keston to undertake the main part of the course which is the practical work, and this year half of them worked for a continuous week during April, while the other half worked at week-ends during the summer. The site presented Iron Age, Roman and Saxon deposits over a wide area and proved to be both interesting and complex.

Of the many hard-working students who have taken this year's course, the following are commended for their outstanding work: Mr Robinson (Beginner's), Mrs Edge (Advanced), and Mr Woodman (Research).

During the month of April more than 20 students from the classes were invited to assist with the urgent rescue-work at the Darenth Roman Villa as part of the "Darent Valley Rescue Operation," ahead of a new sewer-pipe scheme planned for this area. Students from all three classes also assisted with rescue archaeology at the Horton Kirby Roman Villa which was discovered by the CIB Archaeological Rescue Corps in May, again on "Darent Valley Rescue Operation."

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