Archaeology has the potential to be present almost anywhere, on both brownfield and greenfield sites, and is rarely visible at the surface. The costs and timescales for dealing with certain types of archaeology can be substantial, meaning it presents a risk for developments as well as providing opportunities for public engagement and added value.

Whatever the scale of your development, you need a trusted archaeological expert to guide you through every stage. At Avalon, we recognise that every project is unique, and our approach to managing archaeological risk is rigorous, but also fully flexible. We tailor our response to your individual needs, making sure you’re alerted to any possible risks as early as possible, so you can build in necessary contingencies.

  • Early due diligence / Land Acquisition
  • Desk-Based Site Assessment
  • Client Representation
  • Defining, Procuring, and Managing Fieldwork
  • Public Engagement

Why work with Avalon?

  1. Our proactive and energetic archaeological risk management service is headed by Alex Farnell, Associate Director, who brings over 20 years’ experience of archaeological fieldwork, management, and consultancy. We are a practice with a great depth and breadth of experience, and we are able to provide the full range of archaeological consultancy services.
  2. Our archaeological and heritage professionals are all experts in their fields, and work as a closely integrated team to provide a complete heritage planning service. Being embedded within a specialist planning practice we have a keen understanding of what it takes to efficiently manage any archaeological issues through the planning process.
  3. Our commitment to working closely and collaboratively with clients to minimise inputs and maximise outcomes for both the project and the public sets us apart. Clients trust us to be honest, and our advice is always honest, planning-focused and commercially astute. We are always upfront and realistic about the full costs of dealing with archaeological constraints through to full discharge of conditions.

Our Core Services

Early due diligence / Land Acquisition

Ensuring that potential risks and issues are recognised at an early stage is essential when acquiring land for development. Our team is rigorous and thorough in preparing advice on potential constraints and financial risks from archaeology, whether at the inception of a project or in relation to existing planning conditions.

Desk-Based Site Assessment

Avalon’s archaeologists are experienced at quickly accessing and analysing existing information to assess the archaeological potential of a site. We prepare proportionate documents to support pre-application engagement and full planning applications and will provide an accompanying client briefing note to ensure that the commercial implications of the results and next steps are understood by project team.

We also input into Environmental Impact Assessment and can collate the results of desk based and field surveys, historic building and settings assessment, working closely with our heritage team to prepare Historic Environment ES Chapters.

Historic Building Recording

Avalon’s team of archaeology and heritage professionals are experienced at recording historic buildings to meet the requirements of planning conditions and to guidance published by Historic England.

Client Representation

Avalon’s archaeologists act as agent for our clients, undertaking robust negotiation with Local Authorities and Statutory Consultees to ensure that archaeological works are proportionate and necessary. We can also prepare applications for Scheduled Monument Consent and provide expert witness services.

Defining, Procuring, and Managing Fieldwork

Avalon’s team has a wealth of experience in archaeological fieldwork and are expert in the design and management of these projects to support planning applications and fulfil the requirements of planning conditions.

We negotiate appropriate scopes of work and put together a team to see the work through successfully. We use a transparent tendering process to enable our clients to select appropriate contractors from a group of trusted partners based on like for like quotations.

We oversee and quality-assure fieldwork and reporting stages to ensure they are fit for purpose, adhere to agreed scope and methods, and are appropriate to the project aims overall.

Public Engagement

Archaeology is undertaken for public benefit and local authorities are increasingly asking for direct engagement with the public to be designed into archaeological projects. There can also be benefits to developers and their projects to reaching out and engaging with the communities in which they are working.

We can assist in developing cost effective and proportionate community engagement to add value to the local area, enhance reputation and to satisfy specific planning conditions.

Here to help

If you have a project that would benefit from expert advice, we’d love to hear from you.

Alex Farnell
Associate Director

Alex Farnell