Careers

HS2 Archaeology & Heritage Lead

Is an HS2 Archaeology and Heritage Lead career right for me?

If your answer to most of these questions is ‘yes’, then a career in archaeology at HS2 could be for you:

  • Do you enjoy carrying out investigations, either in the library or on site?
  • Do you have a strong interest in the past? Do you like talking to lots of different people to engage them in stories of the past?
  • Do you enjoy working outdoors as well in a library or a laboratory?
  • Do you like problem solving, detective work and piecing together evidence?
  • Do you like being involved in projects from start to finish?
  • Are you good with technology?
  • Do you enjoy working in a team or with other organisations?

Advantages and disadvantages of being an HS2 Archaeology and Heritage Lead

Perks:

  • You get to work as part of a team on the biggest archaeological dig the UK has ever seen.
  • If you work in a successful team, you can receive recognition for your achievements.
  • The role has a lot of variety – no two days are the same.
  • You get to work indoors and outdoors and meet and work with lots of different people.
  • You get to make new scientific discoveries.

Challenges:

  • You need to be committed to seeing a project through to completion.
  • You need to be flexible in your working hours.

Useful skills and entry qualifications

Useful skills and requirements include:

  • A degree in archaeology, or another relevant science subject
  • Good research and analytical skills
  • A background in science and a good understanding of science as a subject
  • An interest in conservation and the environment
  • Good communication skills

Many archaeologists also study for a HND or foundation degree in archaeology. Each university has different entry requirements, so you should check these with the individual institutions.

It’s important that you have some practical experience before applying for jobs. Archaeological associations often provide details about fieldwork that students can get involved with. You can find more information about this on the Council for British Archaeology (CBA)’s website

What qualifications do you need to be an HS2 Archaeology and Heritage Lead?

Most archaeologists have a degree in the subject, or in a science-related field. Many archaeologists who work in senior positions also have a master’s degree or postgraduate qualification. These qualifications will make you stand out from other applicants and are very valuable in the eyes of an employer.

Any of the following qualifications will useful in being an archaeologist:

  • A degree in archaeology or a science subject
  • A degree in history
  • A master’s degree in archaeology or a postgraduate qualification
  • A HND in archaeology

What is the workplace of an HS2 Archaeology and Heritage Lead like?

A lot of your work takes place in an office, working on a computer, meeting colleagues or on the phone. You might also visit organisations or communities that are interested in your work. Sometimes you need to go out onto historic sites to see how the investigation is doing.

How to become an HS2 Archaeology and Heritage Lead

It’s important that you have some practical experience before applying for jobs. Archaeological associations often provide details about fieldwork that students can get involved with. You can find more information about this on the Council for British Archaeology’s (CBA) website.

Other sources of information about how to get started or get involved can be found at:

Archaeology Training Forum

Chartered Institute for Archaeologists

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