The conference in full swing
The conference in full swing at The Manchester Museum.
Dr Isobel Thompson's presentation on the Middle Iron Age
in Hertfordshire is being introduced by the session chair
Dr Elaine Morris.

Conference delegates relaxing between sessions.
Conference delegates relaxing between sessions.

One of the hands-on sessions in progress
One of the hands-on sessions in progress. Dr Bryan Sitch, Curator at The Manchester Museum, showing some of the pottery from the prehistoric collections in the museum.

Prehistoric Ceramics Research Group Conferences

The joint conference of the Prehistoric Ceramics Research Group and Prehistoric Society was held at the The Manchester Museum,
on 29-31 October 2010

The Prehistoric Ceramics Research Group & The Prehistoric Society joint conference entitled ‘The Present and Future of British Prehistoric Pottery: Finds, Methods and Interpretations’ took place at The Manchester Museum between October 29th and 31st 2010.

Almost 60 delegates with research interests in British and Irish prehistoric pottery came together to hear about new finds and interpretations and to exchange information about all matters pottery-related. The audience included a wide range of archaeologists from ‘amateur’ enthusiasts through contracting archaeologists to those working in the management of the historic environment and academics. As such, the conference demonstrated the great benefits that can be reaped by cross-sectional discussions and information exchange. O.N. Book from Sheffield set up their bookstall during Saturday and Sunday and delegates made good use of this opportunity.

Proceedings kicked off on Friday with a well-attended wine reception at the museum. On Saturday, a guest lecture by Professor Julian Thomas on the landscape of Stonehenge before Stonehenge started the first day of conference papers on Neolithic, Bronze Age and Iron Age pottery. Talks were interspersed with more hands-on sessions of pottery from North Wales and collections held at The Manchester Museum. The day was rounded off by an excellent dinner at a nearby Chinese restaurant. A presentation by Frances Healy on the exciting project dating causewayed enclosures and its implications for the dating of earlier Neolithic pottery marked the beginning of our Sunday session that was devoted to more technological aspects (ancient and modern) of pottery production and analysis. The conference was concluded by spirited discussion of the present and future of prehistoric ceramic research in Britain. The discussion explored the themes and processes considered in the conference papers. In particular the challenges presented by the large numbers of sites producing prehistoric ceramics which have been, and continue to be, investigated during fieldwork arising from the planning process were discussed.

This conference showcased the great strengths of the PCRG, in that it facilitates dialogue and interaction between prehistoric pottery practitioners from all sections of the archaeological spectrum. As such, the PCRG represents a very useful resource for all those working with prehistoric ceramics and has a role to play in disseminating individual and collective knowledge of its members and the profession as a whole. More importantly, the final discussion indicated the need for s provision of visual training material to help with cross-regional comparisons and support the training of a new generation of pottery specialists. This is an issue which fits well within the remit of the PCRG and which it should take a lead in addressing..

You can still download the timetable and abstracts below.





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