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Colin Martin has been associated with the excavation of Armada ships for four years. In 1968–9 he took part in Sydney Wignall's Spanish Armada Expedition as archaeologist and deputy leader and since 1968 has carried out research into the Armada campaign, particularly in the fields of ship construction and gunnery. In 1971, he worked as archaeologist and project co-ordinator on the wreck of La Trinidad Valencera in Donegal; and during the same year he became Director of the Maritime Archaeological Institute which has been set up in association with St. Andrew's University.