Meetings & Events: Annual Conference, Conferences

2014 Annual Conference in Aberdeen


19 – 23 Jul 2014
Jane Geddes


The British Archaeological Association’s annual conference for 2014 will be held at Old Aberdeen. The conference will be based in the medieval surroundings of Aberdeen University with extended trips throughout Aberdeenshire and Moray. Aberdeen University was founded in 1495 by Bishop Elphinstone and 2014 is the 500th anniversary of his death. Papers and tours will cover aspects of his architectural patronage. Highlights will include visits to Elgin Cathedral (the ‘Lantern of the North’) and Pluscarden Abbey, the only medieval monastery in Britain still inhabited by monks and being used for its original purpose. Secular architecture will feature 13th-century Kildrummy Castle, the innovative tower house at Huntly, and lavish Fyvie Castle. Aberdeen offers the well-preserved St Machar’s Cathedral with its castellated towers and heraldic ceiling, and King’s College Chapel, the only complete medieval church interior surviving in Scotland. Historical overviews will be provided, particularly tackling the moderate Aberdeenshire response to the Reformation which allowed the middle ages to linger into the seventeenth century.

The conference, open to professionals and amateur enthusiasts equally, extends a particularly warm welcome to members from the South who may be unfamiliar with the rich architectural heritage of Aberdeenshire and Moray.

The Pictish Trail

The conference deals mainly with art of the high and late middle ages, but this region also offers some of the finest early medieval sculpture in Britain. Masterful yet enigmatic Pictish sculpture from the 8-9th centuries is found mainly in Angus, in restricted locations. An extra day trip by minibus is offered by Jane Geddes on Thursday 24 July, to sites at Meigle, Glamis, Aberlemno and St Vigeans, with possible drop off at Arbroath or Aberdeen Stations and Aberdeen Airport.

The Pictish Trail day is now fully booked. There is already a full waiting list. Places are still available for the full conference 19th-23rd July.