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The Darkside, Management, Curators and Site worker
Now, now, don't get yourself banned Dr Pete.

N.b. OBE = Other blighter's efforts! }Smile

Archibald Aloysius St John Vulpes Esq. OBE (pending), AIFA
Not going to add anything new here other than voicing support for both 1Mans and Trolls posts about engaging the people in question.

I have always found machine drivers to be reasonable and helpful if five or so minutes are spent just doing a mini site tour and explaination. This may not be the case for all but I believe by being treated respectfully, you will always get the most out of someone whether they archie or digger driver.

P.S- Do the same laws apply to mini diggers, as on some sites these may be adequate (and they look good fun!Wink)?

Im like Oscar the Grouch off Sesame Street, except I live in a pit, not bin!
Sorry Dr Pryor has an MBE not an OBE.

He is a fully qualified machine driver and has even been shown on Time Team driving the machine. He got his MBE for services to archaeology by the way. If you have ever met him you will know he wears a JCB badge on his lapel.

The point I make is a simple one is that we bicker about things and are very pedantic rather than recognise a problem consider it sensibly and come up with a solution.

OK we could have a BAJR poll on this who would you prefer to drive a machine Pryor (a leading field archaeologist with a PHD, the qualifications and chair of the prehistoric society) or somebody from a hire company

The point I make about machining is it is relatively easy compared to many of things we do as archaeologists.

Apologies for being grumpy see my blog on

Dr Peter
Given the choice, I'd rather have Dr Pryor watching the trench than operating the machine excavating it. I think a possible approach would be for larger units (or a group of smaller units) to retain a machine driver (or drivers) to ensure higher quality. This may even be something that archpeople could do (maintain a list of 'recommended' freelance machine drivers)....:face-huh:

Of the Clan Sutton
Quote:quote:who would you prefer to drive a machine Pryor (a leading field archaeologist with a PHD, the qualifications and chair of the prehistoric society) or somebody from a hire company

I would go for someone from a hire company every time - but I'd love to have Dr Pryor standing in front directing the machine.

He may not be a good example, though, as I believe that as well as being an archaeologist he is also a farmer, so probably quite used to using machinery on a regular basis.


to let, fully furnished
So long as the driver held an appropriate license and was competent-he or she could be Buddha for all I care.I would find it difficult to justify two sets of archaeologists eyes per machine in the budget too.Any machine surely requires one set of archaeology eyes and one driver.Both are the experts in their chosen fields on the day(in theory!). Are we to embrace digger drivers as field archaeologists too? "Step down and have a crack at this deep-strat mate".Big Grin

Dr Wardle is absolutely right- we need to identify problems and assess potential mitigation. On digger drivers....
1. When hired from a reputable firm, one gets professional drivers
2. When hired from Bodgit and Scarper to minimise costs-one gets muppets.
3. If, in the unlikely event of reputable firm sending one a muppet driver-one has them replaced.
4. When inevitable muppet arrives from Bodgit and Scarper-get used to it-they have loads to choose from.
5. I personally don`t look forward to the day when I am forced to argue with a driver over the intrinsic value of my machine watchin!!!

..knowledge without action is insanity and action without knowledge is vanity..(imam ghazali,ayyuhal-walad)
I love archaeology, buut can't afford it as a profession. I have however considered training for JCB operation. Sounds like my ideal job Smile

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