The RCHME: Avebury World Heritage Site Project comprised National Mapping Programme (NMP) survey, field assessment, and NMR record enhancement. The data was to provide English Heritage, the National Trust and Wiltshire County Council with information for research, planning and assessment of the area.
The NMP work was undertaken by the RCHME Aerial Survey section, Swindon, between August 1997 and December 1998. The purpose of the NMP is to map, document and classify, at a common scale and standard, all the upstanding and plough-levelled archaeological sites and landscapes to a terminal date of 1945 which have been recorded in England on aerial photographs.
The project area comprised nine 1:10,000 scale OS quarter sheets, the four sheets surrounding Avebury itself SU 06 NE, SU 16 NW, SU 07 SE and SU 17 SW, which encompass Avebury and the designated World Heritage Site, and the five additional maps to the south and west of these sheets: SU 06 NW, SU 06 SW, SU 06 SE, SU 16 SW, and SU 07 SW and a further five maps to the south and west of these.
During the course of the project the aerial photographic sources of the RCHME, Cambridge University Collection of Aerial Photographs (CUCAP) and Wiltshire County Council, and the SMR and NMR records were consulted. The mapping proceedures for this project were a combination of sketch plotting and digital plotting using the AERIAL 4.20 rectification software published by the University of Bradford, and digital mapping in AutoCAD. NMR Monument records were created or updated for all archaeological features mapped as part of the project.
A short NMP management report was written and this together with copies of the overlays and digital files are available in the archive at the English Heritage Archive, Swindon (Collection name: RCHME: The Avebury World Heritage Site Project; UID 1058145).
The NMP results were updated, using airborne laser scanning data (lidar) in 2010 - see Event 1530751 for further details.
During and as a result of the aerial survey, specific sites and areas were visited and assessed by the RCHME Field Survey team.
An enhancement project was undertaken by RCHME Inventory Record staff focusing on records of sites, monuments and findspots within Avebury World Heritage Site and its environs. In order to take into account proposals to extend the boundary of the World Heritage Site, and the Avebury NMP project undertaken by RCHME Aerial Survey (October 1997 - December 1998), this enhancement covered OS 1:10000 quarter sheets SU 06 NW, NE, SW, SE; SU 07 SW, SE; SU 16 NW, SW; SU 17 SW. Existing records were enhanced and new records created via consultation of published sources.