To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what arrangements his Department is making for direct, on board ship monitoring of the work on the HMS Victory 1744 wreck site by independent archaeologists.
4 December 2014
Phased fieldwork on the site will be controlled by the Maritime Heritage Foundation (MHF) and its Scientific Advisory Committee, chaired by Dr Margaret Rule CBE, who led the project to raise the Mary Rose, and will follow the agreed Project Design. Extensive scientific progress reports will be provided to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) to use in decisions to consent to further work. The MOD has the right to inspect any work being conducted at the site and a commitment has been given that the quality of archaeological work on the project will meet or exceed requirements. Examples of scientific reports documenting the non-disturbance phases of the project design are available for public review at www.victory1744.org/publications.
In addition, any licences that may be granted to the MHF by the Marine Management Organisation for works relating to the wreck of HMS Victory 1744 may include a condition requiring monitoring of the activities by an independent archaeologist if that is considered appropriate.