Archaeological expert sought by AGMA

A five-year contract is on offer from the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities to provide archaeological services across the ten boroughs.

The service is currently being provided on an interim basis by Salford University's Centre for Applied Archaeology, following the closure of a specialist unit at Manchester University which previously handled the work.

The new service provider would be responsible for storing and maintaining the historical environment record on behalf of the local planning authorities, developers and other stakeholders.

The contractor will also be responsible for 'targeted enhancement of the HER in areas of Greater Manchester where current records are incomplete in order to ensure consistent data quality and coverage in accordance with national standards.' The contractor will offer bespoke services to individual LPAs on an ad-hoc and responsive basis.

Chris Findley, who takes a lead on planning issues for AGMA, said: "We are extremely pleased to have agreed this new service with the Centre for Applied Archaeology. They will ensure that local councils continue to receive high quality advice when determining planning applications.

"We are also beginning the process of commissioning a long term service provider reflecting our commitment to this important work."

Dr Mike Nevell, head of archaeology at Salford University, said: "Greater Manchester has a rich and valuable archaeological resource. We look forward to providing this new service to AGMA and helping to ensure that local archaeology is conserved and enhanced so it can continue to play a role in the regeneration of the area."

AGMA also continues to support community archaeology through the popular Dig Greater Manchester. Delivered in partnership with Salford University, this project runs until 2015/16 and provides support for community projects, an education programme and advice to local groups interested in archaeology and history.

The tender process is being run by Salford City Council on AGMA's behalf.

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