P&P had a substantial representation at this year’s conference, held in the beautiful Aula Magna auditorium of Stockholm University. Our four posters, and those of Durham colleagues Celia Orsini and Sian Mui, garnered many interested comments and expectations for the outcomes of the project. The field trip to Runsa hilltop settlement, Gamla Uppsala with its monumental burial mounds – a visit enlivened by lunch from a Mexican snack wagon (well done to the organising committee for dreaming up that one!) – and Valsgärde with its collection of cremations, chamber graves and boat burials, together with a stone ship setting, made for an extraordinary day, ending in a welcome drinks reception at Uppsala Castle. Key themes from the conference presentations that struck us as particularly relevant to the project were European-wide incidences and analyses of disease, such as plague and the evidence for climate change. We all came away using the handy acronym LALIA – the Late Antiquity Little Ice Age of the sixth century AD. My highlights? The virtual reality app recreating the great hall building at Gamla Uppsala and a first ever sighting of a white-tailed eagle, floating timelessly above the fjord.
Stuart Brookes discussing a poster with Charlotte Behr and Leslie Webster (photo courtesy of Chris Scull)
The Gamla Uppsala great hall on the virtual reality app (photo: Sue Harrington)
The burial site of Valsgärde (photo: Sue Harrington)