This catch-all term encompasses museums, archaeoparks and excavation-based centres as the overlap between these makes it difficult to draw simple boundaries between them. As analysis progresses it is hoped that the various strengths and weaknesses of each type as a means to present Mesolithic material will become clear.

Sites presenting at least some Mesolithic material are common in much of Europe but tend to be general archaeological or historical museums with a small space presenting the Mesolithic as part of a more general display on prehistory or the Stone Age as a whole.
Most excavation-based centres and many archaeoparks have a focus attached to some local discoveries and – given the rarity of discoveries of Mesolithic structures – very few have the Mesolithic as a major focus.

Methods

This framework will be the basis of the analysis of each site but may not be fully applied to those that are less informative due to a low quantity or quality of Mesolithic presentations.

Desk-based assesment

Onsite assessment

Pro-forma will be designed to facilitate the assessment of each of these questions.

Though they will be assessed in a similar theoretical framework there will be different levels of attention paid to UK sites (the study area) and those in the rest of Europe.

The analysis is anticipated to take place in several stages though some may run concurrently:

  1. International comparisons and a survey of European Mesolithic presentation sites
  2. Initial survey of British Mesolithic Presentation sites (including those currently in development)
  3. Selection of British Mesolithic sites for case studies
  4. Visits and analysis
  5. Synthesis and recommendations