As you may well have expected, the Ancient Connections project board have taken the decision to postpone all public-facing activity until at least September 2020. We are then looking to restart programmes such as the community history training, tourism ambassador scheme with Abarta Heritage, and our Animation project with the local schools, once public health restrictions have been lifted.
It is likely that the COVID 19 epidemic will have an impact on international tourism which stretches to at least Autumn 2020; we are therefore considering putting all major, visitor-focussed activity into 2021 and programming a pared-back but higher-impact schedule of community events then. We are also asking our funders if they would consider a 6-8-month project extension to allow us to programme over the 2022 season. Needless to say, we will keep you informed of any developments.
We are busy planning a number of things that will keep our audiences engaged and hopefully build new audiences during this difficult time and will keep you abreast of these developments as and when they happen. For now, here are the specifics…
The artist-led pilgrimage that we’d planned for May 2020 is obviously on the list of things that has had to be cancelled. We have pencilled in a new date for this: 17-24th April 2021. This unfortunately no longer coincides with Fishguard Folk Festival or the Cathedral Festival in St. Davids. The application process for Artists and Community Pilgrims will be re-opened over summer 2020 with a few little changes so we will let you know about this as and when it is ready.
Pilgrimage Feasibility Study
This aspect of the project is going ahead but with a few changes. The contractor will be consulting people online and over the phone. We will be sending out an online survey at some point soon which we’d like you to fill in and to pass on to community members and businesses who could potentially feed into and benefit from the pilgrim route if it goes ahead.
Irish Archaeology Field School (IAFS)
A message from the Directors of the Ancient Connections Archaeology Field School –
“We have made the extremely difficult decision to cancel all our 2020 summer field schools. We came to this decision based solely on concerns for the well-being and safety of our staff, students, partners, and fantastic homestay families. We hope to still maintain a skeletal project presence in Ferrycarrig to keep the public archaeology component of the project going in 2020. Even keeping this presence on site is contingent on how the Covid-19 epidemic develops.
Further news and updates available here https://iafs.ie/
Denis and Stephen – 26th March 2020”