The Neolithic Longhouse at La Hougue Bie – a new attraction for visitors to the site and educational resource for schoolchildren – has been shortlisted for a prestigious Association of Heritage Interpretation (AHI) ‘Discover Heritage Award’.
The Longhouse has been shortlisted in the ‘Volunteer and Community Projects’ category of the awards, which recognise excellence in cultural and natural heritage interpretation in Britain and Ireland.
The AHI awards are held biennially and the shortlist for 2019 has just been announced, with the AHI saying that a strong field of entries made shortlisting ‘an exceptionally difficult process’ for the judging panel. The Longhouse is up against two other volunteer/ community projects; the ‘Future Thinking for Lochbroom’s Past – Ullapool Museum Redisplay Project’ in Scotland and ‘Some Alnwick Heritage Heroes’ in Northumberland.
The news comes in the week that Jersey Heritage, along with organisations across Britain, celebrate National Volunteers Week by focusing on the huge contribution made by volunteers.
Julia Coutanche, Jersey Heritage’s Volunteer Co-ordinator, said: “The Neolithic Longhouse is an incredible community project, which brought together a large number of volunteers, including a core team, who are still involved in maintaining and interpreting the site. We are delighted the project has been shortlisted and that the volunteers are being given the recognition they deserve for all the hours of work they put in to make the Longhouse a reality.”
The 20-metre-long, replica Neolithic Longhouse was officially opened in March after two years of work by more than 140 volunteers – supervised by UK ancient technology expert Luke Winter. It was built using traditional tools and authentic Neolithic techniques, including mud daubing, thatching, bark-stripping and making cordage from stinging nettles and brambles.
Jersey Heritage will discover whether the Neolithic Longhouse has won the award at a special awards dinner on 10 October 2019.