Letters: “the importance of folk not digging randomly or carelessly”

Dear Orkney News,

In last week’s ‘Orcadian’  I read with interest of Erland Cooper ( of ’The Magnetic North’) burying the tape of his most recent recording, intending to dig it up in a few years and make music with what the recording has become.

One thing that occurs to me is, that Orkney has a lot of Archaeological sites which have not been excavated, or even discovered yet. There is a saying that if you scratch the surface of Orkney, it bleeds archaeology.

Some folk might be hoping to dig and find Erland’s tape, and thereby unintentionally damage fragile sites.

Erland is aware of this, and has clearly marked the spot where his tape is buried with a stone carved by Jo Sweeting which has runes on the front and a feather on the back.

So, if you are inclined to dig for the recording, please only do so if you find this stone, and then, with care.

Personally, I’d say to leave it so that the changes which Erland is looking for get a chance to happen.

This could be said to be Erland’s own form of experimental archaeology – putting something into the earth, then revealing it later.  Maybe best left to take its course?

That just how I see it, but the importance of folk not digging randomly or carelessly is the main point of this letter.


Bernie Bell, Orkney

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