Autumn Conference – 7th November 2022

Grooved Ware revisited: a NSG conference in honour of Alex Gibson
Organisers – Alison Sheridan, Mike Copper and Alasdair Whittle 

Twenty-eight years ago, on Mon 21 Feb 1994, the Neolithic Studies Group met in the British Museum to discuss ‘Grooved Ware in Context’. This led to Ros Cleal and Ann MacSween’s influential 1999 Grooved Ware in Britain and Ireland volume (NSG Seminar Paper 3).

We will revisit this theme in November 2022 through a cracking programme of fresh research and new discoveries including a mixture of new scientific approaches and innovative approaches to these wonderful pots.

Ticketing: Please note that this event is not free! There are limited in person tickets (maximum 70 spaces) that cost £20 but the conference will also be streamed live on zoom for a much reduced cost of £5. We appreciate these costs are higher than in the past but (a) we have been charging a tenner since Gordon Barclay was in charge, and (b) the hire costs for the hall and limited space are beyond our normal expenditure. In person attendance includes tea, coffee, biscuits.

Please use the ticketing options here to reserve an in person or zoom place for the conference. Then you’ll need to pay for it before the event please!

To reserve your ticket, please use the Eventbrite link below and one of the two payment methods:

By cheque: Please post to Tim Darvill, School of Applied Sciences, Bournemouth University, Fern Barrow, Poole, Dorset, BH12 5BB. Payment by Cheque payable to the Neolithic Studies Group

By bank transfer: Direct payment to: Sort code: 09-01-52, Account number: 72613800, quoting your surname followed by NSG22 as the reference number. If needed, IBAN: GB78ABBY09015272613819.

To summarise: in person costs £20, on zoom costs £5.


9.30: Doors open; registration

9.45–9.55: Alison Sheridan: Welcome and introduction9.55–10.20: David Clarke and Ann MacSween (presented by Ann MacSween): Skara Brae – the significance of the Grooved Ware assemblages

10.20‒10.45: Mike Copper: Scottish Grooved Ware Beyond Orkney

10.45‒11.10: Seren Griffiths and Neil Carlin: Continuity and Change: the timing of Grooved Ware-associated practices in Ireland

11.10‒11.30 COFFEE/TEA BREAK

11.30‒11.55 Ros Cleal and Josh Pollard: The only way isn’t Essex, but it may be one of them…

11.55‒12:20 Alistair Barclay: Between Essex and Wessex – hengeless landscapes and a different history

12.20‒12:45 Elina Brook: Grooved Ware from the Army Basing Programme, Wiltshire

12.45‒13.00 Discussion

13.00‒13.45 LUNCH (Delegates to make their own arrangements)

13.45‒14.10 Paul Garwood: Grooved Ware in South-East England: social geographies, chronology, and interpretation

14.10‒14.35 Andy Jones: Grooved Ware in Cornwall and Devon

14.35‒15.00 Sarah Jane Botfield: Representations of the tangible world on Late Neolithic Grooved Ware ceramics

15.00‒15.15 Discussion

15.15‒15.35 COFFEE/TEA BREAK

15.35‒16.00 Lilly Olet et al. (presented by Lilly Olet): Land of milk and honey? Exploring Grooved Ware vessel use in Neolithic Wales through organic residue analysis and compound-specific radiocarbon dating

16.00‒16.25 Roy Loveday: Grooved Ware and the hengiform problem

16.25‒16.40 Discussion

16.40‒16.50 Alex Gibson: Reflections

16.50 Wrap-up

17.00 END

Autumn 2019 – Call for papers

After ‘Gathering Time’: new perspectives on enclosures of the earlier 4th millennium BC

4th November 2019
British Museum, London

It seems fair to say that we know more about causewayed enclosures than any other type of Neolithic site. This is particularly down to the research by Alasdair Whittle, Alex Bayliss and Frances Healy published as Gathering Time (2011), which built on a rich corpus of previous work to develop detailed chronological models for these sites and in effect to write a history of the Early Neolithic.

But of course this does not mean we should go away and do something else. There remains much we still want to know. Having a high-quality framework for understanding opens up different, more detailed questions about these sites, especially as new enclosures continue to be discovered across southern Britain.

So what do we want to know about enclosures after Gathering Time? How much do the new discoveries add to the picture of their distribution, currency, purpose and use?

We are especially keen to receive contributions that deal with the following contextual questions:

  • how do enclosures fit into Neolithic landscapes of settlement, movement, clearance and herding?
  • what is happening in the parts of Britain where such monuments are not found?
  • and what do we know of the broader European milieu from which enclosures emerged?

We already have a good range of speakers discussing causewayed enclosures themselves, but offers of papers, shorter presentations or posters that address the wider context are still very welcome. Please contact by 19th July 2019.