Robert Foulkes

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I joined Big Heritage back in 2014 as the Education Officer for the company and I am now responsible for much of our outreach work with schools. Having worked previously as a Roman Soldier historical interpreter for school groups in the City of Chester for ten years, I jumped at the chance to join the Big Heritage team and gain even more experience in the world of education and heritage.

Since I began work with Big Heritage my primary task has been to expand the range of educational workshops, as well as helping to create a whole set of new and exciting outputs, such as our ‘Heart of a Gladiator’ workshop, which is great fun and a big hit with all the schools who have taken part in it.

I have taken part in a wide variety of successful projects through the company, including our rather unique ‘Roman Medicine Road-show’ which has had me dressed as a gladiator being operated on by a Roman surgeon. I also spent two weeks in Chelmsford co-ordinating the Big Heritage pop-up museum, which celebrated the 100 year anniversary of the beginning of WW1. This went down so well I was invited to march alongside veterans of the British Legion on Remembrance Sunday.

As well as a keen interest in history and heritage I am a fully qualified Personal Trainer and have been studying Martial Arts for over ten years. Unlikely as it sounds, I have been able to use those attributes in my role of Education Officer more than once!

Favourite Historic Monument/Structure: There are many contenders for this but as I have been recently spending more and more time at Conwy Castle as part of our education outreach delivery, so I would have to say that it is currently at the top of my list for favourite historical monument or structure.

Favourite Find: While I don’t hold a formal qualification in archaeology, I have been lucky enough to work on a few of the test pits we have undertaken, as well as a couple of the ‘Big School Digs’ we run. When working on a test pit in Bromborough as part of the ‘Dig Bromborough 2’ project I found part of a handle from a 17th toy pistol, which was rather epic but the best find I came across was during one of our ‘Big School Dig’ sessions. I was helping prepare the test pit for the children whilst Dean was giving them a health and safety brief and going through the procedures with them. Dean had just finished telling the class that it was unlikely that there were many things left to find in the trench, as there had already been two classes excavating before them. It was exactly at that point, as I was tidying the trench, I found a complete Birkenhead Brewery beer bottle. I should have left it for the kids to find but they had already seen me pick it up and look at it.........ah well.

Robert Foulkes

Education Officer