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Update 11

CAMPAIGN TRAIL: UPDATE 11 - 4/9/2000

[image: The final photograph of Mark's trench with Evan's in the background.]

The final photograph of Mark's trench with Evan's in the background.

[image: Final recording of the spring area in Evan's trench.]

Final recording of the spring area in Evan's trench.

[image: Cowering from the rain.]

Cowering from the rain.

[image: ...and then the sun shone again.]

...and then the sun shone again.

THE NEWS IN BRIEF

Digging has finally stopped and attention turns to recording the last of the archaeology.

DIRECTOR'S UPDATE

"Our last reports from the field, and the results for this season have exceeded all hopes.

From Mark's enclosure trench we have:

  • a detailed record of the enclosure wall and ditch on the east side
  • an important sequence of prehistoric and early medieval activity on the eastern side of the spring
  • a surprise in this area has been the discovery of an ?Early Bronze Age crouched burial, in the vicinity of other prehistoric features

From Evan's spring trench:

  • we have located the early medieval lined pool, which has been bisected by a more recent well arrangement. We have also established that early medieval deposits survive within the early pool.
  • we have located a wide paved path, possibly a lane, which would have formed the main axis for the enclosure during the 9th and 10th century.

And no doubt we'll discover much more as we process the evidence back in Cardiff.

None of this would have been possible without the tremendous efforts of the team: Dave, Evan, Heather, Mark, Steve, Alice, Archie and Pete, the digging team who have worked extremely hard under difficult conditions, all those behind the scenes who have supported the project in various ways, and last but not least Roger and Debbie Tebbutt for their continuing generous support of the excavation. Many thanks to all!"

DR MARK REDKNAP

EVAN CHAPMAN - SUPERVISING THE SPRING TRENCH

"Penultimate day and we still seem to be on top of things, which leaves me with the feeling that there must be something major I've forgotten to do!

Yesterday was spent finishing the digging. In particular removing the remains of the deposits in the spring depression which we've have been digging out. We also cut a section across the pathway, proving, as we expected, that it sat directly on the natural subsoil.

Today the morning was spent cleaning the site for photography, hindered by driving rain. In the afternoon we managed to make a start on producing measured drawings of the vertical sides of the trench. These provide another record of the layer we have dug through and their relationship to each other.

The main task tomorrow will be to get the rest of these plans finished and insure all the other written records are complete."

EVAN CHAPMAN

MARK LODWICK - SUPERVISING THE ENCLOSURE TRENCH

"Nearly the end - one day left before we can return to normal life! The last two days have been spent recording and trying to prepare the site for the final photographic record.

On Wednesday I decided we needed to see inside the enclosure wall so that we could draw the relationships between the different layers and features. We began excavating and uncovered a stone feature which appeared to have some structure to it, possibly a collapsed or subsided wall. Is this the remains of the building we were looking for inside the wall? Unfortunately we no longer have enough time to extend the trench and investigate the feature completely, but we can fully record what we found so far.

Before we all go home I would like to thank all the team on my trench who have managed to stay remarkably cheerful and worked hard and conscientiously through some extremely difficult conditions. Thanks."

MARK LODWICK

HEATHER JACKSON - FINDS SUPERVISOR

"Like Evan, I have this feeling that I must have forgotten to do something! With Alice's help, I seem to have managed to keep up with all the finds coming in and packaged most things as I have being going along, so I only have the metalwork left to pack up. Although several students have been working very hard at the flotation, the spring deposits have produced so many samples that we cannot possibly get them all done. Some of these will be sieved back at the museum, others will be left here to be processed next year.

The rain today also meant that not all the washed finds can be completely dried, but we will package them up separately and dry them out properly at the museum. The finds from today will be packaged unwashed as Evan has learnt from previous experience that this is better for them than bagging them up still wet."

HEATHER JACKSON

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