Much of WAC's second year was occupied with establishing its Salisbury base. Staff from the five Wessex 'home counties', Berkshire, Dorset, Hampshire, Wiltshire and the Isle of Wight, transferred to Wyndham House, a building shared with the Wiltshire Conservation Service, situated behind the Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum in the Cathedral Close.
The transferred staff included field officers from the five DoE funded county committees and the M3 Archaeological Rescue Committee (MARC3): Pete Fasham (who was appointed Assistant Director at WAC), Peter Woodward (Dorset), Julian Richards and Sue Lobb (Berkshire), Vicky Basford (Isle of Wight) and Chris Gingell (Wiltshire), along with Pete Cox from Dorset, Jo Gingell and Phil Harding from Wiltshire, and John Hawkes from MARC3.
Although the newly arrived staff were already working on surveys and excavations in their respective areas, 1980 was the year in which WAC excavations started. The first 'Wessex' excavation, Wl, was a prehistoric, Roman and Saxon site at Wraysbury, between Windsor and Staines. (All excavations need a unique site code, so that the records and finds from one site are not confused with those for another).
W2 was an excavation at Coneybury, not far from Stonehenge, where a Neolithic henge (in this case an oval ditched enclosure with north-east facing entrance) was investigated. This was the first stage of the Stonehenge Environs Project, a project that continued through into 1986.