Recovery archaeology project of Iveco with British Museum
Two Iveco Eurocargo 4x4’s have played a crucial role in the success of an archaeological recovery project which has seen the British Museum working in conjunction with the Sudan Archaeological Research Society (SARS), Iveco and New Holland Construction.
The expedition was carried out by the Castiglioni brothers and Derek Welsby, curator of the
British Museum Ancient Egypt and Sudan department saw the relocation of over 50 pieces of rock art and rock gongs dating to between 5,000 BC – AD 1500 as well as the 390 blocks of an early Kushite (c. 8th-5th century BC) granite pyramid, along with its offering chapel and enclosure wall. The recovered artefacts will form part of a permanent collection of the British Museum forming an exhibition dedicated to Ancient Egypt and the Sudan.
The Eurocargos - one equipped with a 6 tonne crane having a reach of 3 metres and a flatbed platform body; the other with a steel-reinforced, three-way tipping body - were provided specifically for the project by the Iveco Group’s headquarters in Turin, together with items of specialist construction plant supplied by fellow Fiat Group company New Holland Construction.
The role of the Eurocargos in the project extended beyond simply recovering the artefacts as they were also used to deliver in food and provisions vitally needed to ensure the success of the project.
The archaeological project took place in the region surrounding the Fourth Cataract of the Nile in the Sudan, prior to the damming of the river. The Fourth Cataract is currently being flooded to provide hydroelectricity for the region, with the British Museum/SARS team one of nine international missions under the banner of the “Merowe Dam Archaeological Salvage Project”, which have uncovered thousands of sites dating from the Middle Palaeolithic (150,000 years ago) to the very recent past.