Candidate Profile

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EXPERTISE
Archaeology
Earth Sciences, Geology & Geography
PREVIOUS EXPERIENCE WITH:
BIOGRAPHY
Born in London, with an early childhood in Australia, Dr Eyers studied geology and achieved her doctorate with the Department of Earth Sciences, Open University in 1992. Since that time she has lectured for several universities including Reading, Oxford and the Open University.

Her geological career has taken her to many parts of the world with projects in the Caribbean,Brazil and Turkey being particularly exciting. She has worked in Turkey on archaeological sites and led many field tours to both archaeological and geological locations.

More recently her geological expertise has been put to good use giving advice and training to archaeologists. This work became so successful and enjoyable that in 2006 she set up her own business ‘Chiltern Archaeology’. A variety of interesting projects include Iron Age, Saxon adn Norman sites, and infamously Roman investigations into a villa site in Buckinghsmahire, southern England (Yewden Villa). The results of this project went world-wide with research into 97 newborn burials developed into proof of infanticide (killing the unwanted child). These findings were broadcast on BBC television’s Digging for Britain and have resulted in several professional papers.

Dr Eyers is the author of several books such as a field guide series called 'Rocks Afoot', the Geology and Archaeology of Lycia, Turkey' and a 'Journey through the Chiltern Hills'.

Dr Eyers is a regular contributor to archaeological television programmes as well as BBC Radio Oxford, Berkshire and London.


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TALK TITLES
All talks are Powerpoint presentations and 45-50 minutes, or as instructed.

GENERAL OR TRAVEL:

1. Amazon adventure
This is a story of a trip up the Amazon in a boat, survival in the jungle with only a canoe, a hammock and fishing line, and all about the ancient ecosystem and people of this wonderful part of the world.

2. Turkish delight
The geology and archaeology of a beautiful country with an amazing history – Turkey. The topic is blended with landscape, art and culture to give a real insight to the people of this country.

3. Boudicca - warrior queen or rebel?
A legendary figure, admired by women as an icon of womanly strength. She took on the greatest power of the ancient world - the Roman Army - after their invasion of Britain, and she almost won. This talk investigates the truths and the myths of this intriguing leader of the ancient Britons.

4. Life and death of an ocean - the Mediterranean
Oceans are surprisingly ephemeral things. Just like us they are 'born' and 'die'. This is the spectacular story of the Mediterranean from the geological point of view.

5. Food glorious food - a celebration of recipes through the ages
Immerse yourself in an archaeological tour of food through the ages with informative and sometimes surprising new facts emerging from recent research. The diet of Homo sapiens has changed dramatically over the millennia. Is this for the better or for the worse? This talk is a very different and intriguing insight into one of the staples and delights of life – food, glorious food.

6. Istanbul – east meets west
The magical meeting place of east and west - an introduction to the city’s archaeological heart.

7. Turkish carpets
A delightful insight into these beautiful items – as a craft and item of beauty, as a reflection of local customs, as a regional identity and as an archaeological/historical piece of work.

GEOLOGY:

1. Geology of………. (place of choice)
The geology of any area that the talk is requested for, but this does require at least a couple of weeks warning for the photo and map archive to be retrieved and collated. Some areas may not be suitable – just ask.

2. ‘Stories in stone’ – rocks and landscape of .....( area of the cruise....)
Every rock has a story to tell. You need a little geology knowledge to read this ‘rock’ language, but it is really easy to learn. The talk will show you how to look at the rocks and the landscapes of the voyage with new eyes, so that you can start to unlock every story in stone as you explore these and other distant shores.

3. The wonderful world of rocks and minerals
What is a rock and what is a mineral? How do they form and what do they tell us about ancient environments? This talk provides some of the answers to questions you may have had for some time! The talk uses worldwide and well-known locations.

4. It could only happen to a geologist......
A humorous account of what geologists try to do for a living, and then the reality of what actually happens in the job!

5. It’s life Jim, but not as we know it.
A look at the first life on Earth – the weird and wonderfuls of the Precambrian and Cambrian periods 600 to 500 million years ago.

6. Fossils and how to become one
Everything you ever wanted to know about fossils, including a few surprises.

7. Birth of an ocean – the opening of the Atlantic
Oceans are ephemeral things – they are born and they die. This is the story of the Atlantic opening and separating Africa from South America. The talk focuses on the rock and fossil evidence. The fossil evidence is simply a selection of the best fossils in the world!

8. The Pacific – life and death of an ocean
Oceans are ephemeral things. Just like us they are ‘born’ and die. This is the story of the Pacific. A variety of locations will be looked at from all around and within the pacific. This is a tale of the spectacular and the tragedy. Is there a sad or happy ending?

9. Volcanoes: the what where and why
This talk includes everything that people usually ask about volcanoes with some spectacular worldwide examples. What is a volcano (this might surprise you!), where do you find them, and how do they work? (The volcanoes are changed to suit the cruise locations).

10. Volcanoes – the fires of life
Why do people live so near to dangerous volcanoes? Some spectacular images from around the world to start the talk and then a focus on the volcano now labelled as the ‘most dangerous in the world’ – Vesuvius. This is a look at why people live there, its past activity and the predictions of when it will erupt next.

11. Italian volcanoes
A look at Vesuvius, Etna, Volcano and Stromboli. All very different volcanoes with different activity – why so close, but so different? Spectacular images.

12. Volcanoes of the Caribbean
Every island in the Caribbean either is, or has been, a volcano. Why are there so many volcanoes in this part of the world? Starting with her personal research in the area of the Lesser Antilles from St Vincent to Kick-‘em-Jenny the volcano tour moves on to Barbados, St Lucia, Antigua and Monserrat. (volcanoes changed to suit cruise)

13. Icelandic volcanoes
Extraordinary photos of ‘that’ famous eruption that stopped flights – and an explanation of all Icelandic volcanoes and scenery.

14. Volcanic world down under – New Zealand
Lovely slides of the volcanic story of New Zealand – explaining some of the activity seen such as Rotorua and historical eruptions, showing some of the lava forms commonly encountered and how they form.

15. Volcanoes explained – the Hawaiian chain
The Hawaiian islands are a beautiful and well known chain. They are an L-shape within a large expanse of ocean. Some are active volcanoes, some are not. Why? This talk will explain the intriguing story of this chain from top to tail.

16. Galapagos
The dual edge of the geological making of the islands and then how nature took hold and an amazing evolutionary history evolved.

17. Pompeii and Vesuvius – past, present and future
Vesuvius is a fascinating volcano and research has revealed much about it’s activity and timing of eruptions. This looks at the volcano over it’s entire history and shows the final days of Pompeii and Herculaneum as a case study.

18. Fjord eyes only
A look at the landscape and geology of the Scandinavian fjords. The Norwegian fjords are justly world famous scenery, but how and when did they form? This talk will unravel the ancient making and breaking of rocks to form the classic landscape of today.

19. Hot rocks – naughty, but gneiss!
Rocks shape every landscape and reveal much about an area’s past. Different rocks provided the raw material, but then nature takes control and shapes them. Scandinavian rocks have been deep in the Earth – and hence hot; they are naughty as they conceal their past by ‘morphing’ from one type to another; and yes they are very ‘gneiss’ as the lovely images will show!

20. Baltic amber
What is amber and how did it form? Where can you find it and how old is it? This talk will explain all and show a whole new world locked inside the very amber we all love to wear!

21. The Ice Age
A look at the last Ice Age and the different environments this created (largely using the UK as examples). We are currently still within an Ice Age – just experiencing a little warm spell (an interglacial) at the moment. As interglacials only last 10,000 years on average, and the last ice retreated 10,000 years ago, the presentation closes with a question posed – “so what is coming next – global warming or a return of the ice?”

22. Glaciers
A look at the complex and beautiful world of icy landscapes – from glaciers to icebergs, from tundra to sediment laden melt-waters. Many locations featured.

23. Alaska – an arctic landscape
The rocks and landscape of Alaska, and life in a tough environment.

24. Santorini - volcanoes at their best!
How did this beautiful, peaceful island form from such a violent beginning? All will be revealed.

25. The Azores - fire and beauty
The Azores form a collection of islands (each one a volcano) in the middle of the ocean. Despite their fiery beginning they provide some beautiful scenery. What are they doing there and are they still active?

26. British volcanoes
Volcanoes are not what Britain is known for today. However, in the past the country has seen massive volcanic activity. Where can you see these rocks today and what do they tell us about the past?

27. Death of the Dinosaurs
What exactly did kill the dinosaurs? The two main ideas will be looked at - the asteroid impact and massive volcanic activity. The facts reveal all, but with a few surprises.

ARCHAEOLOGY:

1. How archaeologists work
This is a fascinating insight into how archaeologists go about their everyday work. We start with the ‘why do archaeologists want to look into the past’ and follow on with the ‘how they do it’ – a brief glimpse of some of the very varied methods. The audience can have a go at a simple thought task with good results.

2. The grave trade – archaeology of burials
This talk is an overview of the ideas, beliefs and rituals surrounding the burial of our dead from the Neolithic to the Anglo-Saxons, and from Medieval times to the flamboyant Victorians - drawing connections to present-day practices and trends. An intriguing history of a ritual we have been practicing for at least 25,000 years and will continue to do so for a very long time!
Linked to the ITV and History channel series ‘The grave trade’ which the speaker appeared in to discuss ancient customs of burials.

3. The Romans in Britain
Who were the Romans? When and why did they invade Britain? What did they do when they got there, and how do we know? The conclusions are intriguing – the british may have been rather ‘un-Roman’ in reality!

4. Life and death in a Roman villa – the unedited Hambleden story
This talk is essentially typical Roman life as shown in a Roman villa in southern England. However, exceptionally good bone preservation has enabled evidence of death on site to be preserved – aspects that are often destroyed by natural processes on other Roman sites. Following amazing discoveries during a project completed in 2011 in the Hambleden Valley, this talk shows what was happening in Roman Britain at the time that 97 dead newborn babies were laid in the yard. The adult murders down the well will also be revealed. The talk ends with the conclusion that the 97 babies were deliberately killed at birth – but why? Evidence is then presented that killing infants at birth has been occurring since humans arrived on the scene – up to the present day. So why does the human species so often kill its new born babies?
This work featured the speaker on BBC4’s Digging for Britain.

5. The Vikings – raiders or traders?
The Vikings remain an enigmatic and often misunderstood area of archaeology. Much misinformation exists in books written on this subject. Who exactly were ‘the Vikings’? What was their background, where did they end up and how do we know? All will be revealed.

6. Life in the Stone Age – the Neanderthals to us
The lifestyles of Stone Age people focussing on the Dordogne region of France from the Neanderthals and the Cro-Magnons to England and us. This is about tools, art and simply staying alive in a sometimes hostile world.

7. Prehistoric Art – voices from the past
When did people first start ‘art’ - carving items to carry round with them or applying sculpture or paint to caves? More importantly, why did they do it? They conveyed a meaning to the ancient people that made them – but what do they tell us? There are some intriguing ideas on everything from Venus figurines to stone circles to cave paintings
Sites covered: British rock art sites (several), Australia, Patagonia, France, Portugal.

8. Pompeii and Vesuvius – past, present and future
Vesuvius is a fascinating volcano and research has revealed much about it’s activity and timing of eruptions. This looks at the volcano over it’s entire history and shows the final days of Pompeii and Herculaneum as a case study.

9. Pompeii life unveiled!
What was it really like to live in Pompeii during its heyday in Roman times? This talk holds back no punches and shows life as it is depicted by the archaeological finds and writings of the day - much of which was hidden by coy Victorians. Not for the faint-hearted or easily shocked!

10. Ephesus – virtual tour of an archaeological wonder
Ephesus – its World Heritage status is well deserved. It has been a notable settlement site since the Neolithic period and contains Bronze Age, Greek, Roman, Byzantine and Turkish remains, amongst others. It contains the largest collection of Roman ruins in the eastern Mediterranean and this will guide you through the best.

11. Roman Pula
What the Romans did for Pula, with much of it still visible today if you know where to look. A tour round the best sites of this important part of the Roman Empire.
CRUISE HISTORY / EXPERIENCE
First engaged for cruise speaking in 2013 I have now sailed with several companies including Cunard, Holland America, Viking, Saga and Fred Olsen. This variety of ships has allowed me to speak to different audiences on almost every ocean! I always tailor the talks, where possible, to the sites being visited. There has always been a really warm and enthusiastic response from the guests and they also know I will be really good value for their trips ashore whether giving pre-trip tips or as an escort on their coach.
RECENT PAST CRUISES COMPLETED
The following recent Cruise History has been recorded for this candidate.
SHIP REF CRUISE DESCRIPTION NIGHTS SAILING FROM DEPARTURE DATE
Viking Star ST180308 Mediterranean Odyssey 12 Barcelona Thursday, March 8, 2018
Viking Sky SK180204 Turquoise Seas of the Western Caribbean 7 Miami, Florida Sunday, February 4, 2018
Viking Sky SK180128 Turquoise Seas of the Western Caribbean 7 Miami, Florida Sunday, January 28, 2018
Viking Sea SE171216 From the Caribbean to the Amazon 21 San Juan Saturday, December 16, 2017
Viking Sea SE160814 Empires of the Mediterranean 9 Athens (from Piraeus) Sunday, August 14, 2016
Boudicca D1611 Portuguese Islands & Cities 13 Greenock (Glasgow), Scotland Saturday, July 2, 2016
Saga Pearl 11 P2142 A Grecian Odyssey 25 Southampton Monday, October 5, 2015