3. Conclusions

Digital photogrammetric survey in many ways represents an ideal form of public archaeology. The technology behind the technique is relatively simple and forgiving; images are better in focus but otherwise there are few stipulations. We were surprised by the ability to process even very blurred images generated on some of our community aerial kite-flying surveys into digital land-surface models. Surveys of a site, even of a relatively complex monument, can be achieved comparatively quickly. Surveys can be undertaken using any form of digital camera, including ubiquitous camera phones if their image quality is of a sufficiently high resolution. Digitally recording monuments could allow members of the public, who for a variety of reasons might not be willing or able to engage with other forms of fieldwork, to become part of archaeology, and to generate important archaeological research data themselves.

As well as the unparalleled record of sites in our study area, the HeritageTogether project has allowed the co-production of our method in practice. Our methodological outcomes (see Appendix) are highly relevant to archaeological projects that may wish to engage members of the public by employing digital photogrammetry. As well as crowd-sourcing our research data through collaboration, we have co-produced a method as a result of digital photogrammetric recording at over 80 archaeological sites, using nearly 200,000 images, and worked with members of the public on and off site in a range of settings. We feel strongly that these practical, methodological digital public research outcomes are as much part of the success of the project as its other outputs. We value the methodological outputs of the project detailed here; they represent our co-produced reflections on the practice of archaeology. We believe that public archaeology does not begin and end at the trowel's edge, and should include developed engagement in all aspects of project planning, fieldwork, and post-excavation processes for citizen scientists who wish it. If we do not engage and support members of the public with project planning and reporting, we are doing interested people a disservice in only affording a very partial view of what archaeology is. We believe part of this should include valuing and reporting the work undertaken in partnership with members of the public in the development of methodological approaches.