As the Gibraltar Museum-led team commences another season of excavations at the Gorham’s Cave Complex World Heritage Site, its work has received high-profile television coverage worldwide in recent weeks.
The work being carried out in Gibraltar was recently featured by NHK in Japan in Episode 2 of its new series “Leaving the Cradle”. The programme enjoyed a high viewing rate and it is estimated that approximately 10 million people watched the episode, which was also ranked one of the most popular programmes in the NHK’s on-demand service. It is understood that NHK is working on the English-version of the series which is expected be completed by the end of August.
Earlier, the work of the Gibraltar Museum at the Gorham’s Cave Complex also received prime coverage in a BBC Two series entitled “Meet Your Ancestors” which featured Andy Serkis, best known as Gollum in the Lord of the Rings and Caesar in Planet of the Apes. The first ever scientifically accurate, 3D, working avatar of a real Neanderthal was created for the series in which Gorham’s and Vanguard Caves took central stage as sites which have revolutionised our understanding of Neanderthal behaviour.
Commenting on the latest coverage at the start of the 2018 excavation season, Professor Clive Finlayson of the Gibraltar Museum said that Gibraltar had a unique world treasure in these caves, whose generosity appeared to have no bounds. “We plan each season’s work meticulously but we just never know what surprises lie awaiting our team.” The participation of international and local students in the project is growing each year and Professor Finlayson is optimistic that, with the Gibraltar Museum’s additional role as an Associate Campus of the University of Gibraltar, the prospects for the future are very bright. “This project is now not just about the excavations themselves. Thanks to this cutting-edge work, we now have a wonderful platform as leaders in this field and we should make the most of this at all levels. We are poised to become one of the world’s Centres of Excellence, not only in studies of human evolution which we already are, but also in many of the related disciplines which come under the umbrella of Quaternary Studies.”