MSDS Marine employees are encouraged to contribute to the historic environment profession in a number of ways from volunteering time on committees and projects through to providing open days throughout the country to highlight the marine historic environment. Notable benefits for the historic environment include representation on the Scientific Diving Supervisory Committee, the Association of Protected Wreck Licensees, the CIfA Maritime Affairs Special Interest Group, the ICOMOS UK Wood Committee and the Nautical Archaeology Society Executive Committee.
We regularly undertake research and provide opportunities for volunteering that are in addition to our funded research projects. A good example of this has been the fieldwork and research we have undertaken at Sandwich Bay, Kent. Since 2018 we have spent days over a number of fieldwork sessions providing opportunities for over 100 members of the public to become involved in our research. Public presentation and outreach is key to the philosophy of MSDS Marine and we take every available opportunity to present our work to a wider audience; from attending conferences and events with stands through to running free public open days for specific projects (such as for the #Rooswijk1740 project which attracted over 1550 visitors).
MSDS Marine offer two annual grant awards for volunteers working on protected wreck sites and for maritime archaeology students to give something back to the community in which we work and to build capacity within the maritime archaeology sector. All MSDS Marine employees are also provided with an additional two weeks’ discretionary annual leave in their contracts to allow them to volunteer their time working on projects that benefit the historic environment.