A TEAM of Bradford scientists have received a grant of almost £140,000 to record and promote the work of a top archaeologist.

The University of Bradford researchers have started work on a project to catalogue and digitise The Calvin Wells Archive Collection - the life’s work of one of the UK’s leading palaeopathologists.

Mr Wells (1908-1978) studied archaeological human skeletons and mummified remains to examined diseases from the past and understand how they developed and were treated.

The Wellcome Trust, a biomedical research charity, has granted the university £137,517 to make the documents, images and films relating to Wells more accessible for future generations.

The project will run for 18 months and create a valuable resource for the study of palaeopathology, and could help inspire new scientific research in the specialised field.

Called Putting Flesh on the Bones, it will be delivered by Project Archivist James Neill, and the team is made up of an archivist, palaeopathologist, osteologist, conservator, and librarian.

The project is being led by Dr Jo Buckberry from the Biological Anthropology Research Centre, School of Archaeological and Forensic Sciences, and Alison Cullingford from Special Collections.

Dr Buckberry said: “This will create an invaluable resource for the study of palaeopathology with the collection holding materials related to anthropology, archaeology, health studies, history, linguistics, and more.”

Alison Cullingford said: “This is a wonderful opportunity to realise the potential of a unique and hitherto inaccessible archive via cataloguing and digitisation. We are very grateful to the Wellcome for their generous support.”

As well as making the catalogue accessible through the Archives Hub and digitising significant items, the team will promote the collection through museum workshops, specialist conferences and through social media.

Professor Charlotte Roberts, President of the British Association of Biological Anthropology & Osteoarchaeology said: “Calvin Wells remains one of the most prolific publishers from the UK in this field today, who studied a diversity of subject matter from artistic representations of disease in the past to mummified remains. In many instances his publications were ‘firsts’ and continue to be cited in our field today.”