Saturday 3rd October 2020

If you have credit from cancelled NAS courses and would like to attend this course - DO NOT BOOK ONLINE. Please contact [email protected] and we will sort out your booking for you. 

Ever wondered where you are, how to successfully get to another location, and what to expect to come across on your journey? This course will provide participants with both theoretical knowledge and practical experience in reading and understanding both maps and charts.  It is intended to provide students with the ability to know where they are, with a basic understanding in the use of terrestrial maps and maritime charts. 

Building upon skills learnt to date, be they at an elementary level, possibly in the scouts and guides or at other stages of their lives, course participants will be introduced to a range of terrestrial maps and nautical charts, become familiar with symbols, contours, etc. and through the practical exercises develop skills in both map and chart reading to enabled students to be able to better navigate their way both on land, at sea and through their archaeological endeavours. Being able to read maps and charts can be of fundamental importance in being able to understand why an archaeological site lies where it does in the landscape or on the seabed.

Most archaeological reports will contain maps or charts to help other people better understand where the site is and what it may be associated with, and this course is intended to help people better understand what information is likely to be useful in such maps and charts. 

The course is aimed at walkers, hikers, fell runners, mountain bikers, motorists, divers, boaters, other water users and anyone who is interested in knowing where they are and how to find their way to somewhere else! The course will be of benefit to professional and avocational archaeologists when planning fieldwork, as well as researchers and historians interpreting historical maps and charts. 

NAS members will earn 5 credits for attending

A computer or tablet (phone screens are a bit small to look at for the whole day) with a good internet connection is essential. A built-in or external webcam and microphone are optional. A week before the course you will receive an invitation to the online course session which will be run through GoToMeeting. This is an online video conferencing programme that can be run directly through the internet or you get better connection if you download the small programme - it only takes a minute to do. 

If you are concerned about your computer set up, please contact the organiser at [email protected] for a test run before the course.

NAS members £30
Non-NAS members £60 (although as NAS membership starts at £12, you're better off becoming a member and getting the discount rate immediately!)

Ian Cundy is a NAS Senior Tutor and runs the Malvern Archaeological Diving Unit. He was a boat builder for several decades and has extensive experience of UK waters that he will share with participants during this course.

Ray Archer is an experienced sailor who circumnavigated the globe for five years. He is also a former commodore of the Bradwell Quay Yacht Club in south east England. 

TIMETABLE in British Summer Time

Morning:          Introduction to Map Reading (Ian Cundy)

09:00                Logon, on-line etiquette and introductions (host)

09:20                A brief History of Maps through the Ages

09:40                Creating a 2D image of the surface of a sphere!

09:50                Introduction to Ordnance Survey Maps

10:00                Scales & Co-ordinate System (OSGB36, WGS84, etc)

10:20                Locations (Grid References. / Northings & Eastings / Latitude & Longitude)

10:50                Break / First Practical Map Reading Exercise (10 questions on Co-ordinates)

11:20                Review of the First Practical Map Reading Exercise

11:30                Ordnance Datum (Contours/Triangulation Stations/Benchmarks/Bolts/etc.)

11:50                OS Map Symbols

12:20                Final Thoughts 

12:30                Lunch / (Second Practical Map Reading Exercise (10 questions on Map Symbols)

Afternoon:       Introduction to Chart Reading (Ray Archer)

13:15                Review of the Second Practical Map Reading Exercise

13:30                Introduction to Chart Reading & Symbols

13.40                Who provides them and important information

14.00                First practical Chart Reading Exercise (Basic information on Chart)

14.10                Review of the First Practical Chart Reading Exercise

14.20                Land Features, Depths, Buoys, Compass Rose, Distances.

14.50                Break / Second Practical Chart Reading Exercise (Course/distance/time)

15.10                Review of the Second Practical Chart Reading Exercise

15.30                Tides, Lights, Transits, obstructions, Seabed

16.20                Final Thoughts

16:30                Getting Involved with NAS (presented by the course Host)

17:00                Feedback and end of course

Please note, the above Timetable is provisional and may be subject to change