Welcome to the Urban Archaeology blog. Freelance archaeologist Chiz Harward provides a range of on and offsite services to the archaeological profession, including running and working on excavations, post-excavation services, training and development work, and illustration work. This weblog will carry news of projects as and when they happen as well as wider thoughts on archaeological issues, especially recording, stratigraphy and training.

About Urban Archaeology

Medieval buildings at Horse and Groom Inn, Bourton-on-the-Hill; scales 0.5m and 1m

Urban-Archaeology provides a range of professional archaeological services to individuals, developers, archaeological contractors and consultants on a direct and sub-contract basis. Urban Archaeology offers a flexible, affordable and thorough presence on site, backed up by a detailed and comprehensive service off-site.
Chiz Harward has worked within the UK archaeological industry for over twenty years, working for over ten years on some of London’s largest and most complex excavations including Spitalfields, Plantation Place Roman Fort and the Upper Walbrook Roman cemetery. Chiz is primarily an urban archaeologist specialising in the excavation of deeply stratified sequences within complex demolition and construction programs, but this experience also bears dividends on more rural projects, especially those involving building remains. Chiz has worked in urban centres across the UK, although he also has a broad depth of experience working on rural sites, including many evaluation, pipeline, 'Strip, Map and Sample', and open area excavation projects.  
Chiz has in-depth experience in the assessment, analysis and publication of projects across England, successfully taking projects from an initial desk-based assessment, through evaluation, excavation, post-excavation assessment and analysis, to publication and archive.
Now based in Stroud, Gloucestershire, Chiz works across the UK and can offer a flexible presence on and off site.  

·         On-site

Recording a 19th century barrel vault at Minories, City of London
Urban Archaeology can provide experienced staff for a range of on-site services, from watching briefs and test-pitting to evaluations and excavations. Chiz has recently carried out watching briefs on piling works, drainage trenches and demolition works, as well as an evaluation involving Confined Space work at up to 7.8m below ground.  

Confined space work at 7m below ground level: evaluation shaft through the post-medieval City ditch; Minories, City of London

Chiz is available for sub-contracting to other archaeological contractors who require archaeologists with the skillsets required to investigate complex archaeology within modern site conditions, or just a reliable, enthusiastic and hard working presence on site. Chiz's flexibility and experience means that he can make a real contribution to the successful completion of a project even for a short period. 

Recently Urban Archaeology has started working directly for clients on a number of small projects -reducing the client's costs whilst maintaining the same high standards of work. Urban Archaeology can cover watching briefs, evaluations, building recording, and small excavation projects. 


Urban Archaeology also delivers archaeological work under Church of England Faculty licences. Recent projects include archaeological recording of Gloucester Cathedral Lady Chapel, a watching brief on utility trenching through a consecrated graveyard, archaeological test-pitting to aid the creation of a Deposit Survival Model for an application for Faculty, and the preparation of a detailed Archaeological and Historical Impact Assessment to support a Faculty application.

·      Post-excavation assessment and analysis

Ark database: digital register form
Urban Archaeology provides a full range of post-excavation services, from advice and training, to desk based assessments, evaluation reports and the assessment and analysis of major archaeological sites. Chiz has particular experience in the assessment and publication of ‘backlog’ excavations by several archaeological contractors. Chiz has worked with several contractors to develop integrated GIS-compatible databases and post-excavation systems.

·       Training and methodologies

Urban Archaeology factsheet on robber cuts
Urban Archaeology can provide flexible training in excavation and post-excavation procedures. Training is available as standard or bespoke packages and can be designed for specific sites, recording systems or tasks. Chiz has been involved in developing training materials for several years at a number of major archaeological contractors, and is currently producing a series of training factsheets and posters for archaeologists. 

Chiz has presented a number of academic papers on reskilling and training including at TAG 2011, IfA Conference 2012, FAME Forum 2012, 21st Century Archaeologists conference and TAG 2012.
Chiz has recently been involved in training staff in post-excavation procedures at a leading London archaeological contractor. Chiz was involved in revising the excavation and survey manual for a major archaeological contractor, and in developing new methods to streamline excavation and post-excavation methodologies, creating integrated approaches that saved time and aided work-flow.

·       Research

Ex situ carving of Buddha at Kankrevihar temple, Nepal
Chiz has a longstanding involvement in research and the voluntary sector in archaeology, helping run the Compton Bassett Area Research Project in Wiltshire between 1992 and 1997. He has worked abroad on research excavations at Alba Iulia in Romania, and in 1998 and 2000 in west Nepal recording medieval monuments and earthworks in the Himalayas. 

Chiz regularly gives talks, lectures and tours on his projects, as well as ensuring public awareness and involvement via online resources. Ongoing research concentrates on water supply and management in Roman London, as well as medieval sheep farming in the Cotswolds, medieval grave slabs and ecclesiastical ephemera.

·       Illustration

Urban Archaeology can provide high quality illustrations of both artefacts, and of site plans and reconstruction drawings.
Roman zoomorphic key from Southwark, London