The decision of the University of Sheffield to close its world-leading department of archaeology can only be described as short-sighted.
The UK has long been regarded as a pioneer of archaeological practice and technology, with universities often being at the forefront of new research.
At a time when funding for archaeological research and for the heritage sector in general is tight, willingly abdicating a world-class reputation, facilities and academic knowledge risks the future of countless research projects at sites of tremendous historical importance - the (at times literally) ground-breaking study being undertaken Sheffield Archaeological Department at Stonehenge being but one.
Archaeology is one of our most powerful tools for understanding who we are and where we come from. It is not about treasure hunting or harking back to the past. From studying social change and standards of living to learning how societies coped with the challenges of pandemics and climate change, by understanding the journey from the past to the present, archaeology compels us to consider our own decisions as we journey from the present to the future.