Damage to Salcombe Cannon site, Thames Estuary Review, UCL bursaries, US guided access deep water B29 site

Salcombe Cannon Site Damage

Recently site boundary buoys and the main position buoy laid by the South West Maritime Archaeological Group on the Salcombe cannon site were deliberately severed from their lines. This also damaged the carefully laid bottom lines and archaeological mapping tags laid on the site. A rogue fishing vessel is suspected to have caused the damage.

A fuller account of the damage and responses to it is given in Diver Magazine

Greater Thames Estuary Framework Review

The Greater Thames Estuary Historic Environment Research Framework Review is now underway. The project team are gathering information on significant projects which have been carried out since the original framework ( 1998 ) in order to consider their contribution to the resource assessment, research agenda and strategy. This includes field and desk-based projects, work carried out through the development control process, research projects, thematic surveys and synthesis projects.

The input of stakeholders is vital to this process. So if you have undertaken any work in the Research Framework Area (an area from Whitstable in Kent, upstream to Tower Bridge then around to Clacton, Essex) please contact them by the end of August. A summary of the review and contact details for responses are given here Greater Thames Estuary Framework Review.

UCL MA Maritime Archaeology Bursaries

The Institute of Archaeology, University College London has announced that bursaries for its MA in Maritime Archaeology are once again available thanks to the support of English Heritage.

The bursaries are designed to help those already working within archaeology gain new and transferable skills, and as such come with certain requirements. Applicants must have a BA or equivalent at 2.1 level or above (a GPA of 3.0 or above if a US degree) in archaeology or a related subject. In addition, applicants should also have at least one year of full time (or equivalent part time) experience of working in British archaeology, heritage or the museums sector.

The Institute of Archaeology is particularly keen to support those who might wish to study part-time while continuing to work within the heritage sector, and would encourage applicants to consider this option.

Applications should be made using the standard UCL postgraduate application forms.

In addition students should also provide a supporting letter explaining their reasons for applying and their suitability for the bursary.

Informal enquiries can be made to Dr Joe Flatman by email or phone, via the contact details provided below.

Full details of the Institute of Archaeology MA in Maritime Archaeology are available here

Applications can be submitted until August 31 2007.

US Technical Dive Site Open

The Lake Mead National Recreation Area in Nevada has announced the opening of a remarkably well-preserved, historic B-29 site for public permitted diving. The National Park Service has been working with the park to develop a management plan that balances public access with resource protection.

Part of this plan incorporates controlled public access. The B-29 sank in 1948 with a full complement of associated artefacts and it has now been completely documented and a monitoring protocol is in place.

As far as the NPS is aware, this is the first agency managed technical dive site on a wreck in a protected area. Larry Murphy, Chief of the Submerged Resources Centre of the NPS stated I think this case provides a good example of an agency managing a historic site for public benefit in stark contrast to what would have happened had there not been governmental intervention.

Further details on the site and the circumstances of its discovery are given here US National Park Service guided deep dive. B29 Timeline

News from the HSE Diving Industry Committee

HSE Research

Time to Recompression Treatment research published May 2007

Helmet Noise project possible to be commissioned later this year.

An index of diving-related HSE Research Reports is now available on-line

Supervisors Update

The HSE are undertaking a project to examine the competence of diving supervisors and upon what basis do contractors appoint supervisors. The early results are very encouraging though the survey has revealed that some supervisors do not hold a mandatory letter of appointment.

Technical Issues

Following recent notice on the internal corrosion of cylinders, the HSE are to issue a draft Diving Information Sheet for comment. This DIS is likely to recommend the internal inspection of cylinders if water ingress is likely to have occurred.

Users of Kirby Morgan dive helmets and masks are urged to periodically review KMB’s Safety Bulletins.

Respiratory protective devices. Gas cylinder valves. Outlet connections for diving gases Nitrox and oxygen (BS EN 144-3:2003). The proposed EU changes to cylinder valves will require a different sized valve for gas mixtures in excess of 22% O2 and come into effect in 2008. There are no problems with the current A-clamp and DIN (M25) thread size and it has not been the cause of any incidents. The HSE view is that the standard is not enshrined in UK legislation but provides guidance on accepted means to meet EU directives.

Interspiro DP1 Surface Supply. Users of this spread are advised to note the recent safety bulletin that applies to Divator DP1 umbilical hoses that have been exposed to repeated and excessive bending at the P+ regulator attachment.


Advice about medical and certain safety aspects of commercial diving is available from the Diving Medical Advisory Committee.

Further information can be accessed at the HSE Diving Homepage.


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