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Beth Singler is a PhD candidate in Theology and Religious Studies at the University of Cambridge.  Unlike the majority of PhDs in her faculty who are interested in long dead Theologians, difficult questions about the nature of god or translating dusty texts, Beth is researching contemporary religious movements online.  In particular her thesis is on the Indigo Children, an idea from what is often called the New Age Movement.

The seven chakras of the body are aligned - with coffee.

The seven chakras of the body are aligned – with coffee.

AA: So, tell us a little bit about your work:

BS: I’m very interested in New Religious Movements (NRMs), in particular those that have a strong online presence.  A lot of NRMs do now interact primarily online because their ideas might not be accepted by the mainstream, or indeed, they might be ridiculed for them, and the Internet enables people who self-identify in new ways to find each other.  For my PhD thesis I am looking at the Indigo Children who might not be entirely defined as a religious movement, but are definitely a new community of self-identifying people who communicate regularly through social media about their spiritual ideas.

AA: Okay, now you must know what the next question is going to be… what are ‘Indigo Children’?

BS: You surprise me! Briefly, the Indigo Children are seen by some as a special generation of children who started being born in the early 80s.  They were identified by a woman called Nancy Ann Tappe who claimed to be a synsthete (seeing colours instead of other sensory input) and a clairvoyant.  She said that she saw people’s “life colours” and that each one defined a progressive state in humankind’s evolution.  Others have taken Tappe’s idea and described Indigos and their problems further, as well as exploring new iterations such as Crystals, Rainbows, Dolphins, Blue Rays, Platinums, Angels on Earth, Starseeds, Beautiful Silent Ones, etc etc.  

Although called Indigo “Children”, Indigos can be small children, teenagers or adults.  And there are also those who were born prior to the 1980s who see themselves as Elder Indigos, or forerunners of the explosion in numbers (especially those who involved themselves with the counter-cultural revolution of the 1960s).  Many indidivuals don’t seem to know that they ARE Indigo Children until they come across the term online, or a friend mentions it, and then their difficulties with fitting into structures and systems suddenly make sense.  

AA: You mention that a lot of these individuals do not know they are ‘Indigos’. Is there a list of criteria or certain traits that identify them?

BS: Nancy Ann Tappe gave us a check-list of sorts for the traits of Indigo Children.  It has been elaborated upon by subsequent writers, and version proliferate online, but it serves as a starting point. I won’t quote all of it, but here are a few of the 8 points:

“•They are very intelligent, and very oriented toward their purpose on earth.

•They come into the world with a feeling of royalty (and often act like it).

•They often have lots of energy.”

The full list, and later versions, describe a combination of a sense of entitlement and social awkwardness that can be seen or diagnosed by others as behavioural problems or ‘special needs’, and Indigos may have problems fitting into society’s main structures such as education and the workplace.  Seeing Indigos as ‘problem children’ or ‘children who just don’t fit in’ arguably provides answers for both parents and those who begin to identify as Indigos in adulthood.  The former then have a reason for their child’s behavioural problems and can hold them up as ‘special’, and the latter also now have an explanation for their difficult or even traumatic childhood.  For both, finding the Indigo concept can be like a moment of revelation, or even conversion.  Many of the Indigos I have interviewed describe how reading about the Indigo Children was like finding out something that they knew all along, but had never had a name for before.

Beth Singler.

Beth Singler.

AA: What was it that interested you in particular about Indigo children? Why did you choose to focus on them for your research project?

I’m very interested in the adoption and adaption of established discourses and narratives for spiritual ends.  So in the case of the Indigo Children there is a mix of scientific theory, evolutionary theory, spiritualism, conspiricism and utopianism that picks up from more older sources.  Contemporary religion (or spirituality, and the difference is a part of a huge debate I can’t go into here) does seem to engage in more creative play with sources in the 20th and 21st Centuries.  And some of my other research is on more consciously ‘invented’ religions, to use Cusack’s (2010) term, such as Jediism and some more obscure online forms.

AA: I expect those who subscribe to this view of their children or themselves as Indigo face a lot of skepticism. (I’ll admit to being skeptical myself.) How do you approach your research on a subject like this, especially the interviews?

One of the first Indigos I interviewed asked me if I was just going to “call them all a ‘bunch of whackos’?”.  Well, apart from the fact that a one sentence PhD thesis is pretty rubbish, I happen to think that they are acting in an eminently rational way that humankind has used for centuries. You can call it at its basic level ‘making sense’, or to use a fancy religious studies idea, that they are creating theodicies, ideas produced in order to understand the presence of evil in the world.  Evil as in the problems that they face every day. Understanding where and how these ideas come about is far more interesting to me than whether they are right or not.

Also, as a social anthropologist it is never my place to interrogate the truth of person’s ‘making sense’. Personally, as what you might call a militant agnostic, I’d also say my mind is so open-minded I’m at risk of it falling out!

AA: If you could share one particular aspect of your research with others (so far) what would you want them to know about either New Age Movements, or Indigo children, or this type of research?

I think that the main aim of my work – which may seem surprising since I research these seemingly exotic evolved psychic children, Jedi, pagans, Scientologists and many other forms of online created spiritualities – is to show how mundane the rational processes they are engaging in actually are.  I propose that they are merely people being people to each other, for good or ill.

AA: Thank you so much for taking part in Penny University and sharing your research with everyone. I imagine there’s now going to be a Google stat spike in searched for ‘Indigo children’.

Beth Singler is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge specializing in the social anthropological study of New Religious Movements online. Combining traditional fieldwork with digital ethnography, Beth explores the new definitions of self that multiple on the Internet. Her PhD is on the Indigo Children, but she has also written about Wiccans, Jedi, Scientologists, pop-culture religions and various online subcultures. She has her own blog at http://bvlsingler.wordpress.com/ and you can follow her on Twitter via @BVLSingler.

21st Century Coffee House

A little over two weeks ago Penny University held its first ever live event as part of the Manchester Science Festival.

The event was called “21st Century Coffee House” and we invited people to join us at the MOSI cafe for a 21st century coffee house experience, at a 17th century admission rate (1p)!

It was an opportunity to take part in a scientific tradition, enjoying presentations by a variety of researchers while sipping a cup of C. canephora/arabica infused H2O (coffee) – featuring science-themed latte art. (C. sinensis infused H2O (tea) was also available.)

We had a good turnout, despite the miserable weather (it was touch-and-go whether we’d have to row our car out of the car-park on the aptly named Water Street after the event). The brave individuals who filled out the cafe were treated to presentations and demonstrations by the following people:

Tom Booth (University of Sheffield) – Where’s my mummy?: Searching for mummification in the British Bronze Age: A look at how the destructive procecesses of decomposition may aid in the identification of funerary treatments that were practiced in the past.

Sarah Moller (University of York) – From Oranges to Climate Change: Find out how oranges affect air quality, why clouds are influenced by this, and why some scientists thought a giant hose pipe could be the answer to climate change.

Naomi Pollock (University of Manchester) – Cystic Fibrosis: Cure Found?: A new drug has been developed that drastically increases the life expectancy of some sufferers of cystic fibrosis (CF), so can we say that CF now stands for ‘cure found’?

Ian RussellLighting the Flame, Not Just Filling the Bucket: Ian Russell will demonstrate how his quarter-century-old science show for children evolved into a distillation of his personal ‘science communication philosophy’. He will also explode some custard.

One of our speakers came up ill at the last minute* and so I put together a slightly longer than originally planned presentation on the ‘The Hidden and Forbidden World of Coffee’. The aim was to get the night started by reminding people about the origins of what had brought us all together… coffee (and by association, coffee houses).

It must have gone over alright because during the Q&As afterwards someone asked me about coffee plants, to which I had to respond, “I’m very sorry, but I don’t actually study coffee – I study human remains!” These are very different things. We did manage to come up with an acceptable answer though: the bitter-tasting caffeine in the coffee plant is a toxic deterrent to many animals, which is of benefit to the plant (although sadly not as much since us humans discovered we love that delicious bitter toxic taste). There was an awful lot of interest in the speakers’ topics – we know now that next time we’ll have to plan more time for discussion!

If you missed the night, there is no need to fret about missing the amazing research that was discussed, as there will be interviews with all the speakers up on the website in the future.

But if you can’t wait for the interviews, there were a couple of individuals who attended the night who mentioned it in their blogpost roundups of the Science Festival. They also have pictures, which is great because I was too busy to actually snap any on the night.

Trivial Travels: MSF 2013- 21st Century Coffee House (Penny University) by James Jackman

Bio Fluff: Out and about at Manchester Science Festival #msf13 by Liz Granger

There are a lot of science communication endeavours around and Penny University is a part-time love, which I wish I could devote more time towards (we do have more interviews in progress, swearsies).

I really enjoy the other events that are going on out there that engage audiences with academic research. I attend many of them – and recently I’ve started participating in them too by giving my own talks. However, I like to think that Penny University has something a little different (which honestly, is probably the lack of alcohol – so either you’ll love the difference or you’ll hate it).

This live event was a massive learning curve and I’d like to take the time to thank everyone at the Festival who helped make it happen, as well as everyone who attended, and of course everyone who presented.

If you are interested in there being more live Penny University events, please let us know! We promise to keep learning every time we do one, so they just keep getting better (and tastier).

Ta!

* Deborah Oakley – A Pharmaceutical Revolution: Transparency in medicine is vital: the All Trials Campaign and why it’s so vital. Deborah will also be interviewed for the website, so no one need fret – even if they were there!

T-minus: 27 days

Welcome back from our (slightly longer than unintended) hiatus. It has been a very busy summer with lots of academic progress, outreach events, and planning for the future. There have been open days, science festivals, and site visits galore… and some very nifty technological updates!

It is less than one month until the Manchester Science Festival. LESS THAN ONE MONTH! Penny University will be hosting a 21st Century Coffee House on Tuesday, October 29th, complete with an hour of talks on a wide variety of topics – there will also be demonstrations and hands-on activities (and coffee) (and tea). The line-up of presenters will soon be announced, so please check back in the next week or so to find out what we’ve got in store (or you can follow us on Twitter for regular updates).

While not under the name of Penny University I will also be running another event as a part of the Science Platform on Monday, October 28th. There will be researchers and students from a few universities with The Exploded Skeletons session. You can come get hands-on with the archaeology of bones. Put our exploded skeletons back together, explore the anatomy hidden inside your body, and learn what humans different – and similar – to other animals! This has been an incredibly popular event in the past and the activities are great for people of all ages, so do drop by whether it’s for a few minutes or the whole day.

While we’re at it, if that sort of thing interests you I will be participating in yet another event at the Science Festival: Science Showoff on Friday October 25th. If you’re interested in skeletons, Star Wars, and interesting facts then I highly recommend you attend (there will also be a lot of other non-skeleton, non-Star Wars, but still filled with interesting facts sets happening as well). It’s going to be a great night! There may be props…

[Edit: Oh my word, how could I have forgotten? ScienceGrrl is also going to be at the Science Festival! They will be there on November 2nd with their ScienceGrrl about MOSI event - come see if you can find us all and collect your badge!]

Now, before I wrap up I’d like to extend another call to any and all PhD students, post-doctoral researchers, and early career researchers, as usual, to have their work featured on the site. However, given that it’s October and we’ve got a new raft of students starting I would also like to extend the offer to students who have recently completed their Masters. I know of some fantastic research completed by Masters students over the last few months and it would be wonderful to share it on Penny University, so spread the word. It doesn’t matter if you’ve gone on to do a PhD, started a new job, or are lolly-gagging about… get in touch.

Turrah!

[Bonus note: If anyone is currently researching sound, hearing loss, or any related topics (or knows anyone who is) I’d really like to hear from you for a special feature!]

Live from Jodrell Bank: Science Arena

It will become quite clear as you read on that this is not an interview.  This is one of those not-an-interview-posts I was talking about last month.  Enjoy!

This past Sunday I was lucky enough to attend one of the most incredible festivals – Live from Jodrell Bank.  Held at the Jodrell Bank Observatory in Cheshire, which hosts a number of radio telescopes including the ever impressive Lovell Telescope, the weekend featured an incredible line-up on the Music Stage and a fabulous array of group in the Science Arena.  It was a beautifully sunny day, the men’s Wimbledon final was on the big screen, and people of all ages were out in great numbers from the minute the gates opened.  There was ice cream, paper rockets, dancing, a model LHC, music, florescent slime in cups, sun-toasted marshmallows, food and drinks, ice-cutting diamonds, and so much more!

I was attending the festival as a part of Science Grrl, who had a tent in the Science Arena on both Saturday and Sunday.  We encouraged people to talk to us about science as well as our individual research (joining me on Sunday were Gemma – a nuclear physicist and Liz – a bioarchaeologist librarian), learn more about what we do as an organisation, support us by picking up some brilliant merchandise, and we also tested people’s knowledge of nine amazing female scientists – and taught them more about them – in our Who is She? game.

This is the first event where we’ve had this game (the brain child of Heather Williams, constructed by my capable hands) and it was an enormous success!  It involved nine photos of nine female scientists, some well-known and some who should be well-known – all who have had a major impact on their area of science (and the wider world).  We then asked people to try and match nine names and nine areas of science to the photos.  When we asked people if they wanted to have a go, the initial reactions of people ranged from, “Yeah, I’ll give it a bash!” to “Uhh, no thanks, it would just be embarrassing!” but we encouraged people to try it with the promise of hints… really good hints!  Also by saying that as a prize they could go next door to University of Manchester biology tent and make a cell-cookie, which they could then eat (they could have done this anyway, but it seemed to work).

By the end of the game people were impressed with how much they actually knew – either about the individual scientists or the areas of science – and how much they learned.  It was an absolute pleasure to help everyone (women, men, and children – playing solo or as a group) learn about the individuals featured in our game.  We also had mini-biographies on each of the women, which was handy because people had a lot of questions once they learned a little bit in the game.  By far the most ‘popular’ individual of the day was Hedy Lamarr.  I thought that given the level of interest (and surprise) people showed upon learning more about Hedy, I would post her mini-biography up here for people to read.  If you are interested in hearing more about the other women we featured, let me know and I’ll post their mini-biographies up too!

Oh and in case you are interested, Live from Jodrell Bank will be back (along with the Science Arena and Science Grrl) at the end of next month.  You should come check it out and say hi to us while you are there!

hedylamarr

Hedy Lamarr (Hedwig Kiesler): Mathematician

Born: 1913

Died: 2000

Hedy was born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary.  She was an only child and studied ballet and piano from the age of ten.  Her mother was a pianist and her father was a bank director.

Hedy is most well known for her life as an actress, celebrated for her great beauty as a major contract star during MGM’s “Golden Age”.  She appeared in over thirty-one feature films!  However, she is also less well known for her talents in mathematics.

Hedy and composer George Antheil, her neighbour, invented an early technique for spread spectrum communications and frequency hopping, necessary for wireless communication from the pre-computer age to the present day.  It was based on a musical score that involved multiple player pianos playing simultaneously.  Together they submitted the idea of a ‘secret communication system’ for patent in 1941 and receive it in 1942.  This early version of frequency hopping used a piano roll to change between 88 frequencies and was intended to make radio-guided torpedoes harder for enemies to detect or jam!

Hedy wanted to join the National Inventors Council but was reportedly told by NIC member Charles F. Kettering and others that she could better help the war effort by using her celebrity status to sell War Bonds. 

It wasn’t until 1962 that their idea was implemented, when it was used by U.S. military ships during a blockade of Cuba.  Following this, their patent was little known until 1997 when it was given an award by the Electronic Frontier Foundation, lead to Wi-LAN Inc. acquiring 49 per cent of the patent in 1998.  Hedy and George’s frequency-hopping idea serves as a basis for modern spread-spectrum communication technology, such as Bluetooth, COFDM used in Wi-Fi network connections, and CDMA used in some cordless and wireless telephones.

For her contribution to the motion picture industry, Hedy Lamarr has a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6247 Hollywood Blvd.  But it has only been since her death that she has been truly celebrated for her contribution to science!  She featured as a Boeing ‘woman of science’ in 2003 (with no mention of her film career), been the subject of an Off-Broadway play ‘Frequency Hopping’, and her story – along with George’s – has been covered on the Science Channel and Discovery Channel.

[Side note: One of the things we usually do as Science Grrls is wear a badge that says, “I’m a Scientist, Talk to Me” to encourage people to come up and well... talk to us.  Following the end of the Science Arena Gemma and I stuck around to enjoy the music, but both of us at left our badges on without realising.  We had people asking us questions and talking to us in the crowd throughout the night!  I think I might start wearing a badge like that all the time.  What do you think?

[Another side note: One of the things we usually do as Science Grrls is have props with us to try and get people to guess what sort of science we do and also to allow us to demonstrate some aspect of it for them on the spot.  Gemma had a photo multiplier tube and a piece of diamond (!), which was immensely popular.  I usually bring a model magnetic skull from our lab, but was unable to this time... so I think it’s time to invest in my own.  Does anyone have a spare £250.00 to donate to Penny University? Or better yet - a spare skull kicking about?]

Raising the Medieval Dead (Not a Zombie Thing)

Right.  I am awfully apologetic if you have been pining for research related posts in the last few weeks.  If you haven’t been pining for research related posts in the last few weeks then surely the only explanation is that you must be new here – so welcome!  However, for those of you that missed it – we have terribly exciting news (which is what kept us busy for the last little while).  We’ve been given the go ahead for our live event at Manchester Science Festival 2013!  You can read more about the 21st Century Coffee House (and apply to take part) here.

But now that we are back to our regular programming, I am very excited to bring you the most recent Penny University featured interview.

Coffee house, charnel house, I can see how you could get the two mixed up!

Coffee house, charnel house, I can see how you could get the two mixed up!

Jennifer Crangle is a second year PhD student at the University of Sheffield in the Department of Archaeology.  She is investigating the post-depositional disturbances that occurred during the English medieval period.

AA: So, tell me a little bit about your research:

JC: Post-depositional practises were extensive throughout the medieval period (c.1066 – 1550), but are also evident in the periods both before and after. For the medieval period such activities include the creation of ossuaries/charnel chapels, and relics, the disturbance and emptying of existing graves and tombs, insertions of complete or disarticulated individuals into existing graves and tombs, box and bag reburials of disarticulated individuals, charnel pits and intercutting graves.  It has been thought that skeletal imagery and familiarity with disturbance of the dead became commonplace only after the Black Death in 1348.  The evidence so far, however, is demonstrating that reverence of human bones and their role within medieval religion was developing as early as the 7th century and continued to do so throughout the subsequent medieval period.  My research aims to bring to light this important and little understood medieval funerary rite.

AA: Okay, so let me get this straight.  You’re researching what people did with the dead during the Medieval period… after they were already buried?  I’ve heard of ossuaries before, but I thought they were created because of a lack of space.  From what you’re saying, it sounds like this might not be the case.

JC: Research to this point in England regarding ossuary creation has only focussed on the functional motivations involved, such as a requirement to empty a graveyard of existing skeletons in order to continue burying the dead in that location.  Interpretations of these site types – plus other categories of post-burial disturbance – tend to be purely functional.  This is what you and other people would have heard about before.  However, the liturgical or spiritual motivations and justifications for disinterring the skeletal dead are either minimalized or denied altogether by excavators, medievalists and osteoarchaeologists.  The frequency with which these activities occurred is also not recognised.  It is believed that the creation of ossuaries never really happened to any great extent in England and so the practise cannot be comparable to that of the rest of Europe.  The reality, in fact, proves the opposite; I have found evidence of the existence of over 60 medieval English ossuary sites. Furthermore, these sites clearly served roles in penance, confession, pilgrimage and functioned as chantry chapels did (these were private chapels in churches, built by wealthy families, where they paid a priest to say prayers for their souls).

AA:  Wow!  You mentioned a lot of different types of ‘post-depositional’ practices at the start of this interview, which suggests this was happening a lot.  Can you tell me a bit more about the types of practices?  Box and bag burials sound especially unusual!

JC: People tend to be surprised that post-depositional practices took place at all, let alone to the extent that they did.  People are also surprised that they were intrinsically liturgical!  As I mentioned, post-burial disturbance has been taking place throughout England from before the advent of Christianity in about the 7th century, right the way through the medieval period and into the post-medieval period (c.1550 onwards).  There are so many types of disturbance I won’t be able to go through them all here.  One of the earliest types of disturbance dating to the 8th century was the re-opening of an existing grave in order to insert a new burial.  The skeleton of the existing person was removed, the new person inserted, with the bones of the previous occupant/s placed or sometimes arranged around the new body.  In some places this happened up to 10 times in a single grave.  This also provides evidence about Anglo-Saxon Christian burial in general, for example, it proves that they knew where graves were located, who was in them, and how long they had been buried. 

From about the 7th century we also have the ‘box reburials’ I talked about – of single disarticulated individuals.  Bag reburials seem to be a totally different category or phenomenon – haven’t fully researched them and figured them out yet!  The box reburials represent the ‘translations’ of people deemed saintly due to the number of miracles attributed to this deceased person, which took place at their grave.  This justified the person to be disinterred in a specific ceremony; their bones were washed and placed in a box, which was itself placed into their original stone tomb or coffin which was also disinterred and brought inside a church.  The person was then revered as a saint with their tomb and translated remains becoming a shrine and relics.

AA: It seems our forebears were much more familiar with the dead than we are today – and maybe a lot more familiar than we thought they were!  Were you surprised that there was so much post-depositional activity happening in this period?

JC: Yes, a little!  I had previously researched ossuaries so knew a lot about them before I started my current research. And most archaeologists are familiar with charnel pits (deliberately dug pits in the ground to hold displaced bones within a graveyard) and intercutting graves!  I was surprised at the number and variety of post-depositional practices but even more so at the prevalence with which they are identifiable in the archaeological record.  Post-burial involvement with the dead was definitely ‘the norm’ as opposed to a rare occurrence.

AA: You said you’ve found over 60 ossuaries in England (so far).  Where (and what) exactly are they and why do you think they were lost or forgotten?

JC: An ‘ossuary’ is the most common term used to describe a place where human bones are stored, or to describe the collection of bones themselves.  ‘Charnel chapel’ is actually the official and original term for these places, as detailed in the foundation charters I’ve located, but colloquially within a few years of their construction, they were referred to as ossuaries, carnarium, bone stores, and charnel houses, amongst other names.  They are medieval ecclesiastic buildings, located within the confines of the cemetery of ecclesiastical complexes (including abbeys, cathedrals, hospitals, monasteries and parish churches).  They were constructed in England from the early 13th century to the Reformation in the mid-16th century but the height of construction occurred in the 1300’s.  They were built intentionally for the storage or curation of deliberately disinterred and disarticulated human skeletal elements and were intrinsically connected to prayer, penance and confession; this appears to have been the ‘real’ reason for their construction.  There are two forms of charnel chapel: free-standing, two-storeyed buildings and those built below churches. Both structural types primarily consist of a semi-subterranean vault or chamber, this was always where the bones were arranged/kept.  Free-standing examples had a chapel built directly on top of these partially underground chambers and in the majority of cases those charnel chapels built below churches were located under existing chapels within the church.

As they were intrinsically connected to pre-Reformation Catholic religion and theology, when the Reformation and its aftermath took place from the early 16th century, they were destroyed, emptied or re-used for secular purposes.  This is why their location, purpose or very existence is not known about, because the reverence of bones and the role of ossuaries/charnel chapels in society and faith was ceased, according to the new prevailing religion.  Due to this deliberate eradication of the physical structures and the inherent religious ideology, their original role and usage has been forgotten or misunderstood.

AA: Wow.  It sounds like your research has already discovered some things that may change how we think about this period of history – especially in England.  I can’t wait to hear more!  Will you come back once you’ve sussed out those bag reburials and other unusual practices to tell us more about them?

JC: Absolutely, I’d love to!  The medieval period in England is an extensively researched area of archaeology, yet there is clearly a large aspect of it that has basically gone unnoticed.  I guess that’s a reflection on the success of the Reformers at the Reformation.  The obligatory religious changes they imposed were so forceful that they have influenced our current understanding of England’s pre-Reformation medieval past.  The opinions we as archaeologists and the general public have regarding medieval religious ideology have essentially been shaped by Reformers acting nearly 500 years ago.  It’s only by questioning the established ‘facts’ and what we think we know, that the reality of medieval funerary practises can be recognised and understood.  It’s daunting, but I think it’s important, both to the discipline and to the medieval dead, that the reality of their post-depositional reverential practises are researched and recognised.

AA:  It’s been great having you here at Penny University.  Thanks so much for taking the time to tell us about your research.

JC: Thanks for listening/reading!

Jennifer Crangle is a PhD Candidate at the University of Sheffield.  Her PhD project is focussed on the post-depositional disturbances that occurred during the English medieval period.  If you’re interested in learning more about Jennifer and her research, you can actually visit a medieval ossuary, as described above.  Jennifer is organising /co-ordinating an open day at Rothwell Holy Trinity Church, Northamptonshire on 10th August.  It’s free to attend and includes crypt and ossuary tours by Jennifer, osteological sessions for children and adults, plus evening lectures on the subject of medieval post-depostional practises.  Further details can be obtained by emailing Jennifer directly; updates will also be posted on this Facebook group and the University of Sheffield Department of Archaeology website.