Heritage Monitoring & Advisory Group

Terms of Reference and Membership

DISCLAIMER: Any advice given by stakeholder working groups will be without prejudice to the representations made by individual stakeholder bodies in the pursuance of their statutory or formal functions in relation to the scheme.

Working groups have been created to enable early input, informed discussion and advice to be shared between key stakeholders and Highways England in the development of the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme. The role of HMAG in the scheme is set out in the DAMS, which is secured as DCO Requirement 5.

A Stakeholder Strategy Board has been created to provide an overview of the working groups; to ensure their effectiveness and alignment, to address escalated issues and to provide guidance.

Whilst terms of reference for working groups will be subject to periodic review, it is anticipated that they will remain active through; the statutory process, procurement of contractors, design development and construction. For HMAG, this will extend to completion of the off-site post-excavation programme.


Overall Purpose

The role of HMAG is to inform and advise Highways England in respect of the A303 Amesbury to Berwick Down (Stonehenge) scheme where it relates to the WHS[1]’ and its Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), to provide advice in relation to the historic environment as the project proceeds through its design, assessment, mitigation, post-excavation and construction stages. Where supplementary advice and expertise are required HMAG will request advice from members of the Scientific Committee (see additional Terms of Reference below).

Activities and Outputs

While recognising, and without prejudice to, the particular statutory and advisory roles and responsibilities of their individual organisations throughout the life of the project, the Group will advise on and formulate requirements for, guide and monitor the development and delivery of proposals in order to ensure the consistent protection of the OUV, integrity and authenticity of the WHS in particular, and the historic environment in general. In particular HMAG will:

·         Respond to and advise on specific scheme proposals as they are developed, setting out the requirements for the protection of the OUV and the historic environment, where consultation with HMAG is identified in OEMP[1] Tables 3.2a and 3.2b.

·         Respond to and provide guidance on scheme design and implementation proposals as they are developed and monitor their delivery to ensure minimum impact on the OUV of the WHS and the historic environment, where consultation with HMAG (in addition to consultation with the Stakeholder Design and Consultation Group) is identified in OEMP Annex A4.
·         Advise on development of the research agenda, strategic for investigation, and the scope of archaeological mitigations works as set out in the Detailed Archaeological Mitigation Strategy (DAMS), through consultation on heritage management plans, method statements, site-specific written schemes of investigations (SSWSIs) and related reports; and monitoring the implementation of these within the WHS

·         Monitor and review principles for archaeological work.

·         Monitor reporting, publication and archiving in relation to all assessment and fieldwork (assessment, evaluation and mitigation), maximising the opportunities for public benefit.

·         When required, provide the Highways England Project Committee[2] with updates, advice and guidance on issues relating to the archaeological and wider heritage impacts of the project’s design and implementation via the Department for Digital Culture Media and Sport (DCMS).


Reporting

HMAG will advise the Highways England Project Director and parent bodies. A summary of activity will be provided to the Stakeholder Strategy Board.


Members

Membership of the HMAG comprises a representative from the following:

·         Wiltshire Council[1]

·         Historic England  

·         English Heritage Trust

·         National Trust

The members of HMAG will nominate a meeting chair as may be appropriate from time to time.


Monitoring performance via

·         meetings held as programmed

·         attendance at meetings

·         resolution of actions recorded at meeting  

·         compliance with Terms of Reference

Frequency of meetings

At least bi-monthly, or as otherwise agreed, increasing to as a minimum monthly during fieldwork.

Secretariat

Highways England will act as secretariat for the group. An agenda, plus any supporting papers, will be issued a minimum of 5 working days before the meeting. Action notes will be prepared and circulated to all attendees and apologies within 3 working days of the meeting.


These terms of reference will be reviewed periodically, but at no greater interval than six months.


[1] World Heritage Site: the Stonehenge, Avebury and Associated Sites World Heritage Site

[2] Outline Environmental Management Plan

[3] Formerly, the Highways England Project Board.

[4] In addition to Wiltshire Council’s membership of HMAG, Wiltshire Council also has a statutory role in relation to archaeological works for the entire Scheme for the local planning authority and statutory responsibility for sign-off of archaeological works and approval of Site Specific Written Schemes of Investigations (SSWSIs), Heritage Management Plans (HMPs) and Method Statements (MS).

Scientific Committee

Overall Purpose

The role of the Scientific Committee is to inform and advise HMAG and Highways England in the pursuit of their functions on the A303 Stonehenge Amesbury to Berwick Down scheme, where these relate to the WHS and its OUV, providing advice in relation to historic environment impacts as the project proceeds through its design, assessment, mitigation and construction stages.

Activities and Outputs

At the request of HMAG and Highways England, members of the Scientific Committee will be invited to draw on their individual expertise and provide advice on particular issues relating to the historic environment impacts of the Scheme’s design and construction in relation to the Stonehenge WHS landscape.

Issues may be referred to the Scientific Committee and advice sought by:

·               HMAG.

·               The Highways England project team, via HMAG.

·               Members of the Scientific Committee.

The Scientific Committee will:

·               Support HMAG in advising on development of the research agenda, strategies for investigation, and the scope of archaeological mitigation works, reporting, publication and archiving set out in the DAMS, maximising the opportunities for public benefit in relation to the WHS and its OUV as set out in the Public Archaeology and Community Engagement (PACE) strategy.

·               Promote excellence in the design and provision of archaeological mitigation and fieldwork.

The Committee is expected to advise on implementation of the Scheme in a way that best addresses its opportunities and impacts.

The Scientific Committee will not be required to provide a consensus view but will capture the full range of expertise and advice of the Committee’s membership. The Committee will have an independent chair.

From time to time and as the needs of the project require, the advice of individual members of the Scientific Committee may be sought outside of Scientific Committee meetings, in relation to their particular areas of expertise.

Conduct should be in the spirit of the Nolan Principles[1] for public service. All Scientific Committee members are requested to respect the confidentiality of proceedings. The Chatham House Rule[2] will apply to the Committee meetings.

Highways England may from time to time lead news releases about the workings of the Scientific Committee via the Communications Working Group. Consultation prior to release will always be sought from Committee members. Subsequently, individual members or their organisations may adopt a Highways England news release and disseminate information after Committee meetings – recognising that comments must not be attributed to individuals, either explicitly or implicitly.

An independently hosted website[3] has been established to provide a public interface for the Scientific Committee. Notes of Scientific Committee meetings, together with Highways England archaeological reports that have been approved, are posted on the website for public information.

Reporting

HMAG will advise the Highways England Project Director and parent bodies on the activities of the Scientific Committee and outcomes of meetings. A summary of activity will be provided to the Stakeholder Strategy Board by HMAG.

Minutes and relevant public papers will be posted on the Scientific Committee website.

Members

The Scientific Committee should consist of members who have a required specialist skillset or are experts in a specific aspect of the landscape of the Stonehenge WHS. The composition of the Committee will comprise:

HMAG and other experts who have a required specialist skillset or expertise in a specific aspect of the landscape of the Stonehenge WHS

Monitoring performance via

·         meetings held as programmed

·         attendance at meetings

·         resolution of actions recorded at meeting

·         compliance with Terms of Reference

Frequency of Meetings   

Quarterly, or as otherwise agreed.

Secretariat

 Highways England will act as secretariat for the HMAG Scientific Committee. An agenda, plus any supporting papers, will be issued a minimum of 5 working days before the meeting. Action notes will be prepared by a heritage expert and circulated to all attendees and apologies within 3 working days of the meeting. The Scientific Committee website has a private members’ area to assist in dissemination of meeting papers (the website is hosted and operated independently of the Highways England secretariat).

Although Scientific Committee members will not be remunerated for participation in the Committee, Highways England will reimburse members’ reasonable (evidenced) travel expenses.

These terms of reference will be reviewed periodically, but at no greater interval than six months.


[1] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-7-principles-of-public-life/the-7-principles-of-publi...

[2] https://www.chathamhouse.org/about/chatham-house-rule#

[3] http://www.a303scientificcommittee.org.uk/