This fantastic model was created during the first lock down of 2020 by an incredibly talented Coventry resident. I saw it at Coventry Central Library but it is now on display in the Frier Gate building.
You might have seen that I have not posted for a few days and this is because a few of my posts have generated a degree of negative feedback. Quite honestly I needed a bit of time to suck it up and come to terms with two key facts. First not everyone likes my style or what I write about. Second, yes I made a couple of mistakes and those have got to be owned unto.
I can do nothing about other people. One person said that it sounded like I was drunk when I wrote my piece. Another suggested that I had relied on wiki. Yes it is hurtful, and no I do not rely on wikipedia I do proper research and come to reasoned conclusions but people are entitled to their own opinions just as I am entitled to mine. My opinions in the future will be more closely guarded and I will be less likely to spout them out on Facebook.
Thinking about my actual mistakes is a bit harder because I am very proud of my work. I put a lot into it and spend a lot of time on it. To be shown that I have got it wrong bruises the ego and by the end of the day my ego was very bruised. On that day I was visiting Stone Henge and I sat in the car raging. When I eventually calmed down I began to thing about it I began to think about one of the most useful books I have ever read. The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People tells me that I can not control what other people do or say but I can control how I react to it. I am in fact responsible which is to say ‘able to respond’. So I began to calm down and thought about the most effective way to respond to these criticisms and came to the conclusion that it might be better to look at what they say and then change what I am doing to accommodate those criticisms, where they are just and ignore them where they are not just.
To be honest I have not found this easy. I would like to report to you that I am a humble and modest man but that would just be adding lying to my vices. I am egoistical, self important and that makes me fragile. My fragility ruins lovely days out and now I think it is time to try to learn the lesson and become the humble and modest man who learns from his experiences.
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Thank you again for your time and interest. It is honestly humbling that people are interested in what I write.
It has been confirmed that Sheffield University Archaeology Department, rated as one of the top 50 archaeology schools in the world, is to lose its funding. Similar threats hang over the archaeology departments of the Universities of Chester, Aston, London South Bank and Leicester. It is to be hoped that some archaeologists and academics will […]Archaeology no longer to be studied in Britain, just legally mined in secret for money? — The Heritage Journal
To our dismay, we have now learned that another well-respected archaeology unit is under threat of cuts and closure: the world-renowned Department of Archaeology at the University of Sheffield. The options for Sheffield’s Senior Executive Board are apparently threefold: 1. Invest in the department 2. Close the department and make all staff redundant 3. Make […]Save Sheffield Archaeology — Archaeo𝔡𝔢𝔞𝔱𝔥
One of my favourite days that I run in schools is Stone Age. It does pose a number of questions such as how do I fit 2.4 years of history, remembering that humanity does predate the Stone Age. To make this understandable to children I do have to cut out a lot and focus on some very interesting but I feel unrepresentative chunks of human history.
When we come to the Stone Age we can divided prehistory into five time periods, these enable the children to have some framework in which they could develop their knowledge. So we have the Paelolithic, the Mesolithic, the Neolithic and the Bronze and Iron Ages. 95% of human history is in the Paelolithic and its to this age that essentials like string, clothes, storytelling, team work and picky eating were invented. If I could live anywhere in human history I would live in the tactless wastes of time that we call the Old Stone Age.
A glance at the buildings open to you.Historic Mills and Where to Find Them — The Historic England Blog
A new flagship exhibition showcasing Coventry’s impressive heritage and architectural history has opened in the space above the new Metropolis restaurant in Earl Street. The exhibition has been curated by two CovSoc members, Sabine Coady Schäbitz (Associate Professor in Architecture at Coventry University) and Dr Mark Webb (Chair of Medieval Coventry). The exhibition – Metropolis: […]Metropolis Exhibition — Coventry Society News
DR HANNAH YOKEN I’m a Finnish historian who lived in the UK for nearly a decade. When I tell my British friends and colleagues where I’m from, they often respond with an air of admiration, complimenting the relatively egalitarian principles upon which Nordic social democracy has been built. Certainly, this notion that the Nordic countries are […]Men and Feminism: Gender Equality in the Nordic Countries, 1960s to Present — History Journal
This blog is dedicated with thanks to Steven Dowd in recognition of the kind help he has given me. Without him I would have composed a blog about Winchcombe without actually discussing Winchcombe. I remain in your debt.
As I have already said my skill set involves knowing things and telling people what I know. One morning I was driving and came through this fascinating town, Winchcombe.
Now what interested me about the name of Winchcombe was the Winch element which has eluded me for a long time. This is a bit embarrassing because its one of those short cuts between two pieces of knowledge. I come from a village in Cheshire called Wincham. Here we see the Winch element combined with the Saxon ham which means hamlet. The Winch element is a bit confusing because we are descended from the Anglo-Saxons and not directly from the Romano-British. In Latin there is no V. Any V is pronounced W. This means via meaning road is pronounced Weir and so the Winch is a spoken not written latin which could more accurately be written as Vinch. Vinch is related to the word Vicus, pronounced Weekus so we see that Wincham was once Weekusham. The village probably has its origins with the Roman Fort at Castle in Northwich (probably derived from the Latin Castorum meaning fort) and is easy march of that place. The villages relating to forts were called Vicus and it is from this word we get village. When the Roman legions leave Britian in the 4th century plus they settle in existing settlements. In the case of Wincham they identify it as a hamlet by adding ham to the end of its Roman name, thus we have Village Village. Winchcombe is equally interesting.
Before I start explaining Winchcombe I must express a debt of gratitude to Steven Dowd. Mr Dowd is a gentleman. He has pointed out to me that I wrote this blog about Winchcombe and completely forgot to actually discuss Winchcombe. The name Winchcombe combines two elements. The first is the now familiar Winch from the Latin Vicus pronounced Weechus meaning the village surrounding or near to a Roman Fort. The second is the Saxon Combe which means valley. From this we get Village in a valley. I think but can not be sure that it means wooded valley. What might be of further interest is why did Roman forts have villages around them. Well the first is the uncomfortable truth about soldiers. They like guns, girls and gold. The Roman soldier was not armed on his off duty and his weapons were kept in the Secellum under the watchful eyes of the Signifers who were also the pay masters. Nobody wants off bored armed soldiers. Bored armed soldiers often wander off and find something to do, kill or over throw. So denied weapons the Romans would wander off to the vicus where there were girls and that proportion of their pay they did not spend or gamble they wasted. Amongst these distractions lived their wives and families. Roman soldiers could not lawfully marry and if they unlawfully married their families could not enter the fort. So lets imagine Winchcombe maybe 1700 years ago. The Romans are in control of their empire but storm clouds are on the horizon. A young soldier goes to the Principia where the Signifer signs over his pay less deductions for food, armour, pension and burial fund and then he makes a generous donation to his centurion. After this generous and voluntary payment he leaves the fort and enters the vicus. Lets imagine him walking through the valley, past the prostitutes and the dice games, he smells the oysters and goes to a small house where his new Celtic wife is waiting for him, maybe nursing a baby. Now lets imagine two hundred years in the future. The young soldier is long dead and cremated in the graveyard with a monument to his distinguished service during which he rose to become a centurion himself. Leaning against the grave stone with his arm around his Romano-British wife is a pale man with a slightly hunted expression. He looks over the wooded valley and the strange remains of the forts ramparts. Maybe he was Deor who composed the poem we now call “The Ruin” (yes I know but if it was good enough for Tolkien it is good enough for me!). He looks over the valley, the woods and the safety and asks his wife, “What do they call this place?” Her accent would sound Spanish to us. A combination of Greek, Latin and the Celtic languages, probably quite savage and classical, “Weecus” she replies. He thinks, that’s an interesting name, “I shall call it the woody valley of Weecus.”
I hope you all enjoyed this blog, below is a short video of me trying explain this against the background of car traffic.