Season 3: 20th March – 6th April 2017

Objectives:

Field Team (UK):

Ryan Rabett (QUB)

Christopher Stimpson (QUB)

Thorsten Kahlert (QUB)

Ioanna Bachtsevanidou Strantzali (QUB)

Benjamin Utting (Cambridge)

Field Team (Vietnam):

Nguyen Truong Dong (Institute of Archaeology)

Tran Thi Kim Quy (Curator, Long An Provincial Museum; Senckenberg Rearch Institute, Germany)

 


Season 2: 30th November – 21st December 2016

Objectives:

The second field season of 2016 (managed and led by Christopher Stimpson) will have three main objectives. The first of these will be re-opening excavations at Hang Moi, a site previously investigated in 2011 by the current project and in 2012 by Vietnamese colleagues. Hang Moi is located inside the Tràng An massif and contains Neolithic (Da But) and earlier cultural deposits that span the mid-Holocene high-stand and the Pleistocene-Holocene transition. Our principal aim this season is to further investigate a midden that was uncovered in 2011 (Trench 2).

Secondly, the team will continue excavations begun in August at the Hang Hanh rockshelter on the periphery of the massif, where Da But cultural material has also been uncovered.

Thirdly, Thorsten Kahlert will meet with colleagues at the Vietnam Institute for Geosciences and Mineral Resources (VIGMR) and undertake preliminary field survey  (assisted by Rachael Holmes) towards creation of the project’s GIS database and terrain-mapping programme.

Field Team (UK):

Christopher Stimpson (QUB)

Thorsten Kahlert (QUB)

Rachael Holmes (BU)

Benjamin Utting (Cambridge)

Marc Verhoeven (AAP Archaeological Consultancy, The Netherlands)

Field Team (Vietnam):

Nguyen Truong Dong (Institute of Archaeology)


Season 1: 22nd August – 11th September 2016

Objectives:

This field season will have four research objectives. Firstly, we shall carry out a geophysical survey using ground-penetrating radar (GPR) at a dozen cave sites within the interior and around the periphery of the Tràng An massif. This will be undertaken by Ashely Green (Bournemouth University, BU), this is the first such study conducted in Tràng An, and will provide a valuable guide for the project’s excavation strategy.

Secondly, a survey of the modern-day biodiversity of Tràng An will be initiated. This will be led by Darren Mann (Head of Life Collections and the insect specialist at Oxford University Museum of Natural History, OUMNH), will draw upon local expertise within the Tràng An Management Board, and involve local students. Extending our understanding of the landscape’s current biodiversity will create important points of comparison to the prehistoric character of the massif, particularly with respect to tracking habitat and species change or resilience through time.

Thirdly, test excavations will commence with UK-Vietnamese teams at two groups of cave sites located close to the perimeter of the massif, led by Christopher Stimpson. Data from these will expand and complement the existing archaeological record from the interior of the massif.

Fourthly, working with the Ninh Binh People’s Committee, the Tràng An Management Board, and other colleagues, Ryan Rabett and Tran Tan Van will also lay the ground-work for forthcoming project work-packages (in the fields of: isotope analyis, GIS modelling, and palaeoenvironmental reconstruction), as well as develop the public profile of the project in Vietnam with local media.

Field Team (UK):

Ryan Rabett (QUB)

Christopher Stimpson (QUB)

Paul Owens (QUB)

David Simpson (QUB)

Ashely Green (BU)

Rachael Holmes (BU)

Lucy Farr (University of Cambridge)

Darren Mann (OUMNH)

James Bullen (independent)

Field Team (Vietnam):

Nguyen Truong Dong (Institute of Archaeology)

Pham Thanh Son (Institute of Archaeology)

Selected photographs from the field season:

Site survey and test excavations at Hang Ang Noi

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Test excavation at Hang Hanh rock-shelter

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GPR survey work at the Temple rock-shelter

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