The AIAS Diamond Jubilee Appeal

Digging at Tel Azekah, Israel

The Trustees of The Anglo-Israel Archaeological society would like to invite you to support our special Diamond Jubilee appeal.

Following the launch of this appeal at our Jubilee celebration at the British Academy last year, the Trustees have arranged to partner with the Tel Azekah Archaeological Project.

Our aim is to enable promising students of archaeology and related subjects to further their careers through participation in this project, which offers structured on-site learning in a vibrant and exciting field environment. This will be done through provision of a number of £3000 Student Grants.

A small element of our appeal may also be directed towards funding the travel  of volunteers to the project, either to assist with the management of students or provide specialist input.

About Tel Azekah

Tel Azekah is located in the Judean lowlands, some 45 km from Tel Aviv and 30km from Jerusalem.

The site has a long history, stretching back some 3500 years to the Early Bronze Age. During the Middle Bronze Age, Azekah emerged as a strongly fortified, urban city which continued to flourish until its destruction at the end of the Late Bronze Age. After a period of abandonment, Azekah was once again settled in Iron Age II and flourished as a Judean town.

Despite its long occupation, Tel Azekah was eventually abandoned and forgotten. In the late 19th century, the history of the site was rediscovered when it became one of the first sites to be excavated in Israel, but after this Azekah was once again forgotten until the 21st century.

Current excavations at the site began in 2012, led by Tel Aviv University Professors Oded Lipschits and Yuval Gadot, and Professor Manfred Oeming from Heidelberg University. AIAS members may remember Professor Lipschits, who recently visited the UK on a successful lecture tour for the Society.

How it works

The AIAS will award a series of Student Grants to fund travel, board and lodging at the Azekah dig for four weeks in July and August of this year. These are aimed at students from UK universities, or UK citizens studying abroad.

Not only will students have the opportunity to dig as part of a large well-organised team, but they will also be able to attend lectures on the whole spectrum of archaeological activity from digging to publication, while staying in a nearby kibbutz.

Participating students will write up their experiences in our journal Strata, and we hope to devote one of our forthcoming lectures to the project.

On-site learning at Azekah

How to help

With core funding from a UK philanthropic foundation, members’ funding and a pledge of match funding from a legacy, our Appeal so far has reached a total of c. £20,000. This is fantastic progress, and we’d like to thank all those who have already contributed.

Of course, we’d like to raise even more if we can – the more we raise, the more students we can help. And there is still time left to support this exciting project. Donations can be made through our Administrator, Sheila Ford secretary@aias.org.uk or through the dedicated link below.

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