Progress Towards Our Faculty Goal
Post our A.G.M. of the 10th November, we thought it would be appropriate to let you know about our Faculty award progress.
Funding Progress .. Update
A major private company has been asked for £150,000 thanks to one of our supporters who has connections.
This is mainly for Battle of Hatfield related activities at St. Mary’s, Cuckney (£125k) but also for further work at St. Edwin’s Chapel, Edwinstowe (£25k).
Although the original decision was due at the end of September, we still await an answer.
We really hope to have a Yes / No by Christmas.
Faculty Request … Update
It was great news when the P.C.C. (Parochial Church Council at St. Mary’s,Cuckney) backed an excavation and formally submitted a Faculty Request to the Diocese on the 17th September.
This was supporting excavation of our “Preference 1” (the large pit (by area) in the Eastern Central area of St. Mary’s.
The Diocese then requested crucial supplementary documents relating to proposed working methods.
BOHIS are required to provide :
“A clear project strategy. I would, at the very least, expect to see a properly constructed ‘Written Scheme of Investigation’ (WSI), which Historic England, if consulted, would also require before commenting further. We need a professional specification, site plan, contractor details, supervisory roles, timetable, methodology, sampling strategy, post-excavation scheme including analysis, and deposition statement.”
So in late October we commercially engaged Malin Holst & Tim Sutherland (from York University) to provide the supplementary documents as Jo. Buckberry’s calendar did not allow for her participation.
Initial Advice from Malin Holst
Initially excavate 1 (2 by 2m) test pit (a quarter of the area of Preference 1)
Briefly examine all the bones & pick 2 having trauma damage & send those for analysis
If no trauma damage, then to send 2 bones off anyway for dating
Malin & Tim cannot provide the supplementary information for either of the Diocesan meetings left in 2017 (November 13th & 11th December).
BOHIS have asked them to provide this by Jan. 5th 2018 in order to be assessed by the Diocese on Monday 15th Jan. 2018.
Malin Holst has also indicated that before she commences work upon the supplementary information that she would like the Diocese to comment upon the likelihood of a Faculty being issued. BOHIS do not really agree with this approach as we believe that a formal faculty approach is the best way of judging all of the evidence together and reaching the best, informed conclusion.
However, BOHIS sent a request to the Diocese on Monday 20th November, asking the question.
An Article That May Help us Gain the Faculty
Thanks to his relative Mrs Joyce Tinker, we recently became aware of an article by Philip Ward, one of the workmen employed at St. Mary’s in 1950/1.
This was originally published in the Welbeck Newsletter (Summer 1999).
We hope to provide this and a general letter detailing all of the evidence that might lead us to conclude that the Cuckney area does represent the site of the battle and that an excavation is likely provide compelling evidence – as an addendum to the Supplementary Information.
Part of that persuasion will be ethical considerations.
We believe that the article shows a lack of care regarding the reburial of a ‘Titled Lady’ in the same 1950/1 operations and displays other attitudes that might lead one to believe that the 200 or so skeletons discovered would have been treated in the same manner, necessitating a final reburial with dignity after excavation.
From All The Team