Day 13 – Steady Away

Eleanor’s Blog

It was great to be back out on site at the Duddon Dig – my annual digging day. It is always a pleasure to spend time with the volunteers (Frances, Mike, Christina, Chris, Liz, Roger, Joyce, Faiqa, Ken, Len, Alan B, Craig and Alan W), who are such a lovely, friendly bunch.

Thursday's volunteers (Medium)

Group photo of all the volunteers and staff involved today

Despite the extreme heat there were a few volunteers (not naming any names, Ken, Mike, Roger and Alan B), who were eager to crack on and started mattocking 4 new test pits. Two were located on the northern side of the enclosure and two to the south. The idea was to see how far the ‘cobbled’ area extended and whether the arc of the putative ring cairn could be found. By the end of the day there were no obvious floors in the southern area, but a possible wall in the northern one? This will, I am sure be excavated more tomorrow.

new test pits to south (Medium)

 Test pits opened on the southern side

Faiqa found the only find of the day – another iron nail – in her trench and everyone else worked really hard in extreme conditions to excavate their allocated areas.



The day was improved when Frances handed around her lovely carrot cake – to celebrate Mike and Christina’s birthdays – thank you Frances, much earned energy to keep us going!

Frances made Birthday Cake (Medium)

I am afraid we had to call it a day early due to the heat, but we had to ‘persuade’ Joyce to finish as she was extremely keen to carry on.

Joyce didn't stop! (Medium)

There is just no stopping Joyce


Debbie’s Blog

Well I would just like to say it was lovely to see Eleanor from the Lake District National Park on site today.  I would also like to thank her for her blog and pictures.  Today for me was a busy day so I did not manage to wander around and chat to people (I sometimes forget I am working when I am at the Duddon Dig as I have so much fun).

Again the heat did takes it toll on us all but that did not stop everyone working hard.  I know I have said this before but I have to say Bravo to the amazing volunteers that have attended the dig this year.  Not only for their hard work and devotion but also for making this job so much fun. No matter what the weather you have all turned up with smiles on your faces and eager to help uncover the secrets of Long House Close.

I do not think there is much more I can add to Eleanor’s account of today’s events except to tell you a little about what kept me occupied.


Jeremy definitely had everyone’s attention during his talk this morning.  It seemed to motivate everyone, even in the heat, as all were eager to get started

As I mentioned yesterday I had began to look at a possible feature within the area where we obtained an Iron Age date last year.  Well I am pleased to say that it definitely appears to be a man-made feature. The profile in section and on the surface suggests a possible pit. Also there is a possibility of an area of curved stones that may have formed an oval feature around the possible pit (you can kind of see them in the picture in the area around the scale).  Of course these could just be random but hopefully I should know either way tomorrow.

IMG_3780The possible pit is located between the inner and outer wall on the northern side of Long House Close.  It does appear to cut through the Bronze Age surface that was uncovered last year. I have drawn the section that is visible within the photograph above and also an over head plan.  We generally draw sections at a scale of 1:10 and plans at 1:20.  The section gives us a view, in part, of the archaeological sequences through illustrating its profile and stratigraphy.  This is a very important step when it comes to the interpretation of the feature during post-excavation. We always need to produce an accurate and thorough record of any archaeological remains discovered as excavation often results in the destruction these contexts.

Will this area produce an Iron Age date (Medium)

A section line is put in place to record the elevation and stratigraphic sequence

After I have finished my recording tomorrow I will hopefully be able to fully excavate and obtain a sample from within the deposits of the possible pit.  Fingers crossed we have enough charcoal from these samples to obtain a C14 date.  As we all know though this site is full of surprises so who knows what date we may get.

Well I will leave you with of picture of everyone hard at work ;-D

Effect of the sun (Medium)

Taking a well-earned rest from the sun

Can not believe we only have one day of excavation left.  Have to say I am feeling a little sad.

Thank you Frances for the beautiful carrot cake.  I tink everyone appreciated your delicious offering.

See you all tomorrow bright and early.