Here is a reminder to book your place before the early bird deadline of 23 March 2012 (after which the prices will go up!) and some more details of what you can expect.
The conference timetable has now been confirmed and circulated, but as there have been slight changes to the programme since our provision timetable was released please double check the time and date for sessions you want to attend. As we get full details of each session, these will be added to each session outline on our session outline webpage.
The conference this year will open with a Question Time style debate, getting to the heart of some current issues. Entitled What is the future for Local Planning Authorities and archaeology?, the debate will follow our opening address and will hopefully set the scene for an exciting conference. The debate panel will be confirmed in the next conference bulletin…
Archaeologists represent a profession sitting on a boundary between the historic environment and the developer. Whether recording archaeological remains in foundation trenches, surveying standing structures prior to being demolished, or advising on planning applications, archaeologists are often in direct consultation with the developer – a relationship which is only as strong as the planning system which maintains it. The conference theme centres on partnership. The partnership between the local authority archaeological adviser, the developer and the commercial archaeologist - and indeed our profession - relies on adequate provision within local authorities. Within the current economic climate the level of protection afforded to the historic environment is already challenged. Local Planning Authorities are facing cuts to budgets, with their archaeological advisors facing an uncertain future. At worst services are being closed leaving no provision; elsewhere they are stretched to breaking point. It is within this climate that the opening debate at the Oxford IfA conference asks the question: what is the future for Local Planning Authorities and archaeology?
To avoid disappointment, it is important that you pre-book any training workshop sessions you wish to attend as spaces are limited. There will be places available at conference, and available slots can be booked via our workshops noticeboard in the Main Hall. A workshop booking form can be downloaded and takes two minutes to complete and email back to Manda at firstname.lastname@example.org. You will also have to book your place at conference via the conference booking form. You can do both either digitally or by printing off the forms and sending them into the office.
The conference programme will include a number of AGMs for our Groups – make sure you have a good look through the programme to find out when they are on. All AGM times will be confirmed and emailed with the next conference bulletin at the beginning of April.
On Wednesday we will be hosting our wine reception at the Town Hall, celebrating our 25th IfA conference! Thursday will be a more informal occasion, hosted by Diggers’ Forum and taking place at the Jam Factory. Diggers’ Forum are giving away 30 complimentary tickets to the event to members for the forum – if you want one of these you need to apply for one by contacting Gwilym Hughes via email@example.com by 7 April 2012. Should there be tickets available after 7 April, then if anyone joins DF before the party, then they will also be eligible for a ticket, but current DF members get to apply now.