I am moving to Holland

The title says it all really. I’ll go into the details in a minute but I just wanted first of all to say sorry to the very many of you who are hearing about this for the first time here, online. I wish I had time/the ability/ teleportation skills to come and tell you all in person, but I don’t and this seems to be the best way to reach as many of you as possible and to explain as many of the details as I can.


Way back in November when I knew my contract at Moore Blatch would end in January I was job hunting, and a post-doctoral position was being passed around the mailing lists. It was ideal. But it was in Holland. We talked (me & Matt) and decided I needed to try to get it and we’d see what happened. I thought it was a very, very long shot, but I put in the application. Then I got an interview for a job at Solent, and was offered it and accepted, before the Holland thing even closed. It being international it took a while to shortlist, and I just put it out of my mind and assumed I would be given a polite ‘no’ based on experience of applying for archaeology stuff here in the UK over the last year- not one interview.


Just after Christmas I got an email saying ‘can you come for interview’. I went, but I didn’t tell anyone because I really didn’t think I would get it, and I didn’t want to rock the boat with Solent, but thought it would be good experience, and if nothing else, get my name known in the right circles and be a good chance to talk about my PhD. That was on Wednesday this week.


At 16.30 on Friday they offered me the job and I said yes. The downside is that they need me to start by the first of March, so we don’t have long at all to sort out, well, everything.


I’ll post some links about the project at the end, but to summarise, I’ll be doing the geophysics and geoarchaeology for a project looking at the settlement economy and ‘bottom layer’ of society in Protohistoric Italy, in a region of Calabria. It combines everything I love- geophysics, prehistory, landscape archaeology, geoarchaeology, and is part of a wider exciting project. Though the environment is quite different to my bogs, the challenges posed for geophysics are methodologically similar. It is an amazing opportunity and I would probably have to revoke my right to think of myself as at all intelligent if I turned it down.

But it means I’ll be living in the North of Holland (in a beautiful city called Groningen) for the next three years. The University is a very good one- the R.U.G. The project is and English language one, and I am hoping to do some teaching too. I need to learn Dutch and (lots) more Italian pretty fast.


Matt is 100% behind me doing this, but timing and circumstances mean he can’t come with me, at least not this year. It is going to mean some major changes and upheaval for him too. There is no question of us not being together, we have lived apart before, and we can and will do it again. We think we can see each other often enough for it to work as getting between here and there isn’t too difficult. We will also be relying on Skype!


At the moment I am waiting to get all the official stuff through from the University so I don’t know exactly when in February I will be going over. There will almost certainly be some sort of leaving do, and I will try to see as many of you as I can before I go, but it is going to be more than a little bit hectic. I apologise in advance for any stressedness! This blog is going to come back into much heavier use as a way to stay in touch (like when I started it when I was working overseas in 2006!). I also have my 30th birthday this year and I am hoping a whole load of you might come to Holland and we can eat apple pie?


I am guessing people have a billion questions. I don’t have many answers yet but I’ll try so get in touch and I’ll do what I can.

Much love,


Kayt x

8 thoughts on “I am moving to Holland

  1. Congratulations! Sounds like an awesome opportunity and one that, even though the logistics will be messy, will bring you much joy and happiness. But most of all, lovely Archaeology! Good luck x

  2. Thanks Ladies!

    I am both terribly excited, and more than a little bit sad about going. Massive logistical nightmare- I’m sure it will all feel a bit better once I know Matt is going to be OK as regards the flat, and I have some idea of what I am doing about housing, and when I actually leave!

  3. Hi Kayt, I don’t know if you remember me? I was at York CAA in the antiquist meeting, I am currently doing my PhD at Groningen (GIA) so it will be nice to have a second English person here! Although the Dutch speak perfect English and the Dutch courses are ok, I can get by after a year and I now understand most of what they say to me! groningen is a beautiful ‘city’ although it feels like a large town! The people are very friendly and accomodating.

    Martijn van Leusen told me about your appointment this morning, I think I saw you waiting for the interview but as you no longer have bright red hair I did not realise it was you. All the best for your move and if you need any help/advice let me know.

    Gary Nobles

  4. Hi Gary,

    I’m all blonde these days- too many important job interviews to be pillar box red! It is really good to know there is someone I ‘know’ there already! How is the research going? We will have to start a local Antiquist chapter 🙂 I am very excited about it but there is so much to organise, I may well take you up on the offer!


    • Research going well I will be presenting here in April so you will get to hear all about it! Antiquist chapter sounds good… I have already started to convert some of the Master students to the ways of GIS!!! lol Unfortunately house hunting can be daunting… they usually charge 1 months rent as commission, then want a further month and a half up front! (Luckily Uni gave me an advance) As for prices, I’m paying €530 per month for a single floor appartment which I think is large enough. Only 15 min walk to uni. As for local landmarks, you will get to know Albert Hein, the main ‘supermarket’, various markets are held during the week, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays which has a good selection, few shops are open on a sunday which means planning ahead! (the way it used to be!) Also Monday mornings and friday evenings can be iffy! Oh and I’ve developed a taste for Belguim beer! Dodging bikes will become 2nd nature (after a few near misses!) but all in all a great place… well I think so! Well feel free to email me if you want more info… estate agents etc… in case you dont have it my email is g.r.nobles@rug.nl

      Oh and congratulations! See you soon

      • Thanks Gary,

        I’ll drop you an email at some point over the weekend. We’ll have to arrange to meet up when I get out there and you can show me the beers 🙂


  5. Pingback: Reflecting « Girl with Trowel

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