NEIL GRIFFIN - COUNTY ARCHAEOLOGIST
Neil Griffin in on Linkedin
Over the course of 2022 and 2023 Neil Griffin has been contacted, or copied in on correspondence from Herstmonceux Museum and Lime Park Heritage Trust, as the County Archaeologist for East Sussex County Council.
Very helpfully, his predecessor, Dr Andrew Woodcock, alerted former occupiers to the existence of Planning Policy Guidance Notes (PPGs) 15 and 16, where nobody had mentioned these before. Greg Chuter and Casper Johnson (between them) managed to secure an entry on the ESCC database: The Keep.
The other big player in 1999, was English Heritage, who were in the throes of completing a Monument At Risk (MARs) identification survey, in connection with the Early Electrical Generating Industry.
Also, in 1999, East Sussex County Council commissioned London University to compile a Report. You can read this Report, reproduced on this site, with the kind permission of all those involved.
The Trust are very grateful to all concerned, for steerage, and looks forward to a long and rewarding future cooperating on conservation issues.
Herstmonceux Museum in 2016-17, match boarding revealed, with the well head reinstated, some tree work still needed to ensure survival of the historic buildings. The building served as a hospital for wounded airmen in World War Two. Hence, became known as RAF Herstmonceux, by the Ministry of Defence.
Another curious fact, is that in all this time none of the State parties had offered any suggestions as to how to restore the complex, and there was not one word as to how the building might in time become more important as the missing link between energy generation and storage. This was not down to Dr Woodcock. He was instructed not to make any more of the building, other than in the Report, and soon Dr Woodcock left ESCC. One possible explanation for the malaise, being there was no Local List, a bit of an oversight maybe, in light of the World Heritage Convention of 1972. But, it's better late than never. A very good argument for whoever is responsible, getting their act together.
Neil Griffin – County Archaeologist
Chris Greatorex – Assistant County Archaeologist
An aerial view of Herstmonceux Museum in 2022, showing the public footpaths north of the generating buildings. Many of which are unregistered, but well trodden for over forty years, from our records.
It was either fated, or the most incredible set of coincidences, that brought the Generating Station's savoir together. For sure, without him, Nikolai Askaroff, had it in mind to demolish what he saw as a liability. That was until he was running short of change, and wanted to secure the skills of his best decorator & handyman.
Big thanks then to all the contributors, not least of which is the good Dr Woodcock, who played his part, true to the archaeologists code of conduct. And true to his profession, given the limitations he was working under. Archaeology is a science. Not supposition or guesswork. It is the search for facts, no matter how inconvenient to other agendas, budgets or errors. Archaeology is about correctly recording the evidential facts.
It must seem obvious to a professional, that the present building arrangement, can reasonably easily be returned to the original condition, even including the re-installation of the generating machinery. The real problem is the cost and the time it will take. How to achieve that is proposed in (draft) in the Phases section, on this website. Which "how do we do it," could of itself be the subject of a study. And on which, the Trust seeks the assistance of everyone involved in heritage conservation.
If you know of any information that may help us complete this story, please get in touch.
Copyright © 2023 Lime Park Heritage Trust. A not for profit organisation with charitable objects.