A REPORT ON THE ASSESSMENT OF A POSSIBLE GRAVE AT THE BLACK ROCK MINING OPERATIONS, NORTHERN CAPE PROVINCE
Archaetnos cc was appointed by EScience Associates (Pty) Ltd to compile a Cultural Heritage Management Plan for the old mine workings at the Black Rock Mining Operations (BMRO). The plan is to be utilised as part of the motivation for the site to be declared as a heritage site.
During a field visit a possible grave was located in the area. The aim of this report is to assess the possible grave, to advise and make recommendations in this regard.
BRMO is situated in the Northern Cape Province approximately 80 km north-west of the town of Kuruman and 12 kilometres north-west of Hotazel. BRMO falls within the jurisdiction of the John Taolo Gaetsewe District Municipality.
There are two options when dealing with graves. Both options are discussed in the report. A risk assessment is done, in which the two options are compared to one another.
In conclusion it is clear that that there is no easy solution in a case where there is uncertainty about whether a possible grave is indeed a grave. It is however stated that from the assessment the reasoned opinion is that this is not a grave.
Since there still is uncertainty and in order to minimize risk, the following is recommended:
- That the grave and are within the wire fence be scanned via GPRS to provide more clarity.
- The result from the GPRS can be used to interpret the site and determine a way forward. This could include the inclusion of the site in a cultural heritage management plan, should the conclusion be that it indeed is a grave site. If not, the site would not need to be preserved.
Since there is uncertainty about the number of graves in the nearby known mine workers graveyard, it may be considered to also scan this site to determine possible additional graves. This is not a legal necessity but would make the contracting of a GPRS machine more cost-effective.
Prof. A.C. van Vollenhoven (L.AKAD.SA.)
Accredited member of ASAPA
Accredited member of SASCH