From the editor
How do we define archaeology? In some countries, there are clear parameters in terms of date – the USA’s Archaeological Resources Protection Act (1979) stipulates a minimum age of 100 years, for example. In CA, though, we have featured many decidedly modern sites representing not only the material legacies of the two World Wars and the Cold War, but even the excavation of the Reno, a Manchester nightclub demolished in 1986 (see CA 342). Our cover story has a similarly recent tale to tell, featuring an ongoing project working to document thousands of pieces of Lego – part of a cargo lost overboard in 1997 – that are still washing up on Cornish beaches today.
Our next article traces the rise and fall of medieval London Bridge. A far cry from the bare concrete construction that currently shares its name, it was lined with shops, religious buildings, and the homes of some 500 people.
From this lofty spot above the waters of the Thames, we then plunge beneath the waves to explore the wreck of HMS Northumberland, which was lost off the Kent coast during the Great Storm of 1703. As the sandbank surrounding the ship’s remains rapidly erodes, archaeologists are racing against time to record as much as possible.
From the seabed to the higher and drier environment of the Wiltshire Museum’s attic, our fourth feature showcases a recently rediscovered series of Victorian rock samples, which are shedding invaluable new light on the Stonehenge bluestones.
Finally, I would like to extend a warm ‘welcome back’ to our deputy editor, Kathryn, who has returned from maternity leave and will be delighted to hear from you about news stories for future issues.