Tell Khaiber 2014

11th November 2013

The new accommodation units arrive at Ur. Photo: Licia Romano We are now in the final stages of preparations for the 2014 excavations at Tell Khaiber, which are due to start at the beginning of January. This year we have doubled the size of the team and will be working for twice as long. Our programme of scientific analysis will also be advancing, so we will be taking a portable X-ray defraction machine, a binocular microscope, a total station (purchased with a grant from the British Council), and more computers.

With a large team, the logistics are more complicated. Accommodation at the Ur dig house, kindly provided by the State Board for Antiquities and Heritage, has been supplemented by the provision of four containerised housing units. These have been donated by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and transported from Baghdad to Ur by SKA, who have also generously promised a fifth cabin for use as a workroom. Thanks to Copperchase, the cabins will soon have water and electricity.

Among our staff this year is a conservator who will be taking care of our delicate finds and making sure they are transported in good condition to the Iraq Museum. We have also added a camp manager to look after our expanded household and to keep the team fed and comfortable.

We are looking forward to renewing acquaintance with all our friends at Ur, particularly our colleagues in the State Board for Antiquities and Heritage. Jane Moon was fortunate to catch up with HE Dr. Liwaa’ Smaysem, Minister of Tourism and Antiquities, at the World Travel Market in London on 4 November . He reiterated his support for the Ur Region Archaeology Project and is especially interested in the new scientific techniques we are introducing.

Founder donor Gulfsands Petroleum has generously increased its support for next year. Our thanks to all our donors for making possible the 2014 season.