Workshop for sport-divers in Schleswig-Holstein (Germany)
The lead partner of the BalticRIM project, State Archaeology Department of Schleswig-Holstein (ALSH) opened its gates on 24. November 2018 to sport-divers from Schleswig-Holstein and beyond. The occasion was a workshop with the title „Sporttaucher & Unterwasserkulturerbe“ (sport-divers and underwater cultural heritage).
This workshop was organised as part of the BalticRIM project, with the aim to involve regional stakeholders. The workshop had two principal goals: to raise awareness amongst divers for the underwater cultural heritage (UCH), its susceptibility and protection, and also to gain information of new sites. This dual approach is crucial, as underwater archaeological surveys are carried out by the ALSH only within the framework of environmental impact assessments and rescue operations. Therefore, observations made by sport-divers are of preeminent importance to obtain data that is also relevant for the determination of the BalticRIM priority areas.
With about 70 participants, the workshop generated a great interest, the ALSH’s conference hall was filled with experts of diving. The opening was made by Matthias Maluck (general manager of BalticRIM). Later came a presentation of Dr. Stefanie Klooß, who is responsible for the underwater archaeological operations at ALSH. Project coordinator, Dr. Daniel Zwick outlined during the event the statutory protection of the UCH, the archaeological potential of anomalies and tangible results that will come from the project.
Other guests as Dr. Sönke Hartz (Museum for Archaeology at Gottorf Castle) described his long-standing cooperation with sport-divers in researching inundated prehistoric settlement sites. Furthermore, Elmar Klemm (German Diving Federation) provided practical insights into citizen science by his honorary involvement in underwater archaeological training. Finally, Gabriele Dederer (WWF) presented the effort to find and dispose derelict fishing-nets on the seabed. Since these anomalies could be also of archaeological significance, the WWF and the ALSH have a common interest in determining the sites. The workshop was concluded by a discussion, which raised some important questions regarding obstacles and opportunities for cooperation with sport-divers in relation to UCH in the future.
Pic. 1 & 2. photo credit: ALSH
Banner pic photo credit: ALSH