This article appeared in the Autumn 1974 (Issue #37) edition of the Kent Archaeological Review.
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London Takes Over Sussex.
A most revealing document has just been published by the Institute of Archaeology, University of London entitled 'Rescue Archaeology in Sussex.' Written by Mr Peter Drewett of the Institute it relates in very clear terms how the Institute has taken over virtually all rescue work in the county from now on and will handle most of the money from the DOE. The survey briefly outlines some of the current problems and lists seven projects it plans to undertake, two of which are already started. Of the five new projects, two are barrows on the Downs, one is urban rescue work in a town (Lewes) and two are surveys. It is also made clear that the work at Chichester, now in its 12th year, will be allowed to continue at least while the Institute's scheme develops!
One wonders what Mr A Down, the Director of this major site, must be thinking of the take-over. He holds a fine record for excavation and publication and no doubt this scheme must be as unpalatable as it seems unnecessary. He has a first class part-time team supported by a small nucleus of full time assistants. It seems that rescue archaeologists on the sea coast of Sussex with years of dedicated rescue-work behind them will be totally taken over by distant Londoners. Have they been caught with their trousers down, or were they simply too busy with their rescue work to spot the danger.