The CBA South East has been giving grants for archaeological ventures since 1998. The grants have been given to numerous ventures including funding for excavations, support for student projects, museum presentations, specialist reports and help with publication. The CBA South East prefers to support ventures and projects that encouraged public participation in archaeological events. The variation and scope of subjects where grants were awarded was considerable with each application carefully examined and supported by referees.
The funding for the grants came from small surpluses from early CBA South East conferences and where on a number of occasions the newsletter was unable to be published and distributed, thus creating a saving on printing and postage. The committee considered such a large sum lying dormant in the group account unacceptable and formulated the policy of giving grants to supportive projects. It was anticipated that the funds would gradually diminish and this has now happened. Despite the numerous projects supported it has still taken over a decade before the funds have been exhausted.
CBA South East considers grant giving as part of its remit, and is planning to create a grant fund which would be separate from the main account. It is currently examining methods of fund raising to ensure that the grants policy continues. The hope is that future conferences will be better supported, and that this will create those much needed surpluses to be used for this purpose. It is possible that there are entrepreneurial benefactors out there who maybe supportive of archaeological endeavours and the committee would hope that they would make themselves known. The CBA South East would like to continue supporting archaeological projects, particularly ones that allow the public to have active involvement in excavations and other field activities. By booking a place and coming along to the conferences will ensure that this happens.