In 1936, The Egypt Exploration Society commenced to excavate an ancient Egyptian fortified town in the Sudan, which is known to-day as Sesebi. In 1937-1938, a second party was sent out to complete the clearance of Sesebi and to test a new site at Amara West. The work was directed by Mr. H.W. Fairman, with the assistance of Mr. I.E.S. Edwards, of the British Museum, and Mr. E.D. Bell (photographer and surveyor).
When the excavation of Sesebi was completed, the work was moved to Amara West, an ancient site lying some 60 miles north of Sesebi and about 120 miles of Wadi Halfa. Twelve days were spent in testing and examining the ancient remains. The results were exceedingly encouraging, and it is clear that the site is an important one that is likely to produce first class finds and important information.
After acquiring sufficient funds, it was decided that a 1938-1939 season would take place, to excavate the site thoroughly and systematically.