Well after a weekend off I was welcomed back to site by beautiful sunshine. I just knew this was going to be a great day. I think everyone on site must have felt the same as work commenced very promptly as everyone was allocated their areas for the day. It is so hard to believe how different the site looks in only 10 days.
Again I was in for a busy day as we had two school visits today organised by Stephe. I love the energy the children bring to site along with their curiosity and questions. Again they worked in groups which participated in several activities including a site tour, planning, landscape drawing and excavation.
Although I was supervising the test pits today I did manage to have a wander around site and see what everyone was up to. On the eastern side of Long House Close, Debbie W, Bob and Mary were working hard to clean an area of a possible surface. It appears that this area, just outside the main wall, is formed of uneven irregular stones. A lot of hard work has gone into these outer areas and hopefully we will manage to gain some answers from them soon.
Debbie W, Bob and Mary’s hard work was rewarded when Mary discovered a piece of flint. This was an important find as flint does not naturally occur on this site suggesting it had been brought here through human intervention. I personally love flint so for me this has been one of my favourite finds so far. Well spotted Mary.
Bob, Dave and Debbie were working on the northern corner of Long House Close. Bob and Dave focused on de-turfing and cleaning the area between the sheep fold and the outer wall whilst Debbie worked at the bottom of the slope. This area was not giving up its secrets today but we will it give up on it yet.
Allison continued previous work that had been done at the bottom of the northern slope. I have to say that when standing down at this end you can see a possible platform where Long House Close is.
It was lovely to have a visit today from Gill Hey, the CEO of Oxford Archaeology. Gill worked on the area on the north-west corner of site. This is the area where a possible curve is visible formed by large stones and boulders. It did not take her long to get back into the swing of things and it looks like she enjoyed the day.
Brian and Alistair were finishing cleaning the area opened to the west of the passage way. Nothing at present seems to be visible within the area as it appears to be on the outer edge of whatever earlier feature is present. But as we are discovering this does not mean we can dismiss this just yet.
Well I am going to finish today’s blog with a picture of the fantastic find found within the rich charcoal deposit that was just to the south of last years sondage on the western side of Long House Close outer wall. Jon managed to find a lovely piece of possible Bronze Age pottery. As I mentioned in my earlier blog we did manage to find a small piece in the samples last year but this definitely beats that. Pottery is an invaluable source of dating evidence when it is located within a sealed context. This area has also been sampled so hopefully that will come back with some good dates.
Well tomorrow is looking like another sunny day so get the sun cream and water packed and I will see you in the morning for another day in paradise.
Today was the last of the school visits. 118 children and 16 teachers/helpers have been up this year which makes over 350 during the three year project.
Stephe taking a group of children on a site tour
This morning was certainly the hottest walk up of all the groups but we shouldn’t complain considering previous cold and wet trips. The kids were barely able to manage a dawdle but once they got to the portaloo and realised they were getting close, things got marginally faster. It is an interesting reflection on the age group that three out of the five school groups translated the green structure into a Tardis time machine run by Doctor Poo!
The children working hard on the excavation of the test pits opened for them
Doing the rounds with eight groups without dozing off was quite a challenge in the heat. I felt particularly sorry for Bob who had to demonstrate the mattock over and over again. For the final group, he had left the trench and was over by the tent tidying up when he saw the children coming. There was almost a reflex action as he looked for his mattock!
It was good to have some finds to show the groups. Mary’s flint was much admired while the bronze age pottery was greeted with universal disgust by a generation that are used to shiny glaze.
And, on top of the archaeology we had the art in sketching the valley and the diggers… For natural history we had lizard over by the round pen, the sundews, bog asphodel, cotton grass and some orchids as well… And the history on the time line… And the geography of the highest land in England all… And all that exercise for PE with not a mention of the World Cup…
So, all in all, a well-rounded educational day. I hope they don’t have to write it up tomorrow in school.
Tongue House B
You may have thought that everything was finished with the Tongue House B site, well in terms of fieldwork it is but the process of recording and analysis carries on behind the scenes and we can now reveal the 3d Model created at the end of the excavation. It is just a low resolution model in the blog but the full files are spectacular in their detail. Well done to Debbie for the flying.