C&M Development Support


We are the leading provider of marine archaeological services in the UK and our experienced team of experts is one of the largest operating today. With a strong reputation for quality and innovation, we combine academic rigour with a highly practical focus on clients' requirements. Our Coastal & Marine teams are based in Salisbury and Edinburgh, and provide heritage services nationally and internationally. 
Browse through the links on the right to see the
Coastal & Marine consultancy services.
to see the full range of Coastal & Marine services click here
to see the full range of Wessex Archaeology services click here

Retained archaeologists


The pace at which marine development occurs often means that it is not feasible or practicable to position an archaeologist on site, vessel or shore at all times during work offshore and in coastal areas. Employing Wessex Archaeology as your retained archaeologist means that we are always available to give advice as a project develops, giving you the support of some of the most experienced and innovative marine and coastal archaeologists working in the sector in the UK. This may involve researching finds discovered during the course of development, travelling to review a discovery or liaising between our client and the national curator to ensure that our heritage is protected with minimised impact on development. Our unrivalled level of capacity means that our team can be ready to mobilise to you at short notice. 

Protocols for Archaeological Discoveries (PAD)

- design and implementation


Protocols for Archaeological Discoveries (PADs) are becoming increasingly used where operational circumstances prohibit full-time archaeological supervision. Where work is carried out by disparate teams working offshore a PAD can discharge licensing or consenting conditions whilst protecting our fragile shared heritage. Wessex Archaeology is highly experienced in the design and operation of Protocols for Archaeological Discoveries, pioneering them on behalf of the marine aggregates industry, offshore renewables, fishing and capital dredging. 
Wessex Archaeology’s experienced team can draft protocols, liaise with clients and curators to ensure the conditions of a proposed PAD are appropriate to the circumstances and implement a PAD on your behalf. This includes acting as a single point of contact, researching and responding to reports, and increasing the efficiency of a PAD through our awareness programmes.
Click on the links below to see examples of existing Protocols:

Awareness schemes to support PAD

(Protocols for Archaeological Discoveries)


Protocols thrive when they are adequately promoted, especially in the marine sphere where many contractors from a range of industries and companies will work on each development scheme. Wessex Archaeology is flexible and adaptive to ensure that your Protocol for Archaeological Discoveries is suitably promoted to all those working within your sphere of industry.
Using all media at our disposal from printed word to DVD, personal visits and Skype presentations, multimedia resources, social media and web-based material, Wessex Archaeology can ensure that your staff are given up to date information about their responsibilities to ensure that any applicable protocol is followed in a cost-effective and efficient manner.
This level of awareness input will ensure that your protocol is recognised as an effective mitigation option during work offshore and in coastal areas.

Professional & public dissemination

Wessex Archaeology’s Coastal & Marine team, supported by our web and graphics experts, have extensive experience in disseminating the results of projects carried out in the marine sphere. Using every tool at our disposal and our innovative approach to dissemination we can take your project to the masses or to a specific target audience to ensure that your results are seen by many people, or just the right people.

Digital data management & assessment

Working closely with our Geoservices and Central services teams, we can process, store and interpret digital data collected offshore, using it for analysis or presentation. This includes information obtained through geophysics, diving and ROV surveys. Coastal & Marine have worked closely with Heritage regulators and Marine Environmental Data and Information Network (MEDIN) to establish data links between the archaeologists and marine data users. Coastal & Marine adhere to MEDIN standards in the preparation of data and associated metadata ensuring that our work is conducted to the highest professional level.
Visit our Geoservices pages for more information on our experience and capabilities in working with digital data.

Liaison sevices

between marine developers & heritage agencies
Appointing an archaeologist in the planning stages of a project demonstrates your responsibility to conscientious development and can minimise risk to the process from unanticipated archaeological outcomes. Choosing Wessex Archaeology to support your project ensures that you access our breadth of experience in liaising between clients and national curators. We have nearly 30 years of experience working within planning frameworks to protect our heritage and drive sustainable development. Let us bring this experience to your project to ensure that you get the results you need first time.

Artefact & sample analysis

Our Coastal & Marine team includes experts in the fields of finds interpretation and environmental analysis. As part of our service to you we can study finds and conserve them advising on their treatment and storage. We can process and analyse environmental material collected from the seafloor during grab sampling, trawling or boreholes and use this information to assess the archaeological potential of a site. This might be through an initial assessment or a deeper analysis of deposits, layers or material from a site, depending on the needs of your project. Visit our Geoservices and Central services pages for more information on the services we offer.

Brief & specification development

Our combination of academic and commercial experience makes us unique in our sector and we will bring this experience to the development of briefs and specifications for work on sites of archaeological significance. Our in-depth understanding, gained over more than 15 years in the marine sphere, of what planners and curators are looking for ahead of the granting of consents means that a brief or specification developed by us will ensure work carried out on site is conducted at an appropriate level for the heritage and for your development.

Multi-disciplinary site assessment & cultural heritage chapters for Impact Assessments

Wessex Archaeology’s Coastal & Marine team is highly experienced when working with other organisations within the marine sphere to ensure that site assessment is carried out to the highest standards. We have appointed ecologists to add additional depth to our heritage reports, worked alongside ecologists, biologists and geologists to contribute to far-reaching assessments of marine areas and provided cultural heritage chapters for Impact Assessments. Rest assured that if you appoint Wessex Archaeology to manage or participate in a multi-disciplinary site assessment or to contribute archaeological chapters to impact assessments, you will receive the benefit of this experience.