Day 31 – Excavation

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Day 31!? What!!

Many of the Trenches are closing down now.  Today it was the turn of Trench 2.

But before we could go to town and chuck all of the soil back in, we needed to make sure the records were up to scratch.  This not only involves producing a photographic and drawn record, but also a written record, in which each layer of soil encountered is described.  The information for each soil horizon encountered includes data on:

  1. How compact is it? (is the soil layer soft, moderate, firm or very firm)
  2. What colour is it? (light brown, brown, dark brown or reddish brown … it get even more completed when you throw in a Munsell colour chart!)
  3. What is the soils composition? (is it a clay, silt, sand or silty clay etc)
  4. What inclusions are there? (are there fine roots, charcoal, angular or rounded stones)
  5. How was it excavated? (using a trowel, mattock or spade)
Recording the soil layers in Trench 2
Recording the soil layers in Trench 2

Across the site at Trench 9 (the long one) we may have uncovered evidence of ploughing that predates the construction of the moat.

Beneath the ditch cut, made to alleviate the water in the moat during the 17th Century are two, and possibly a third parallel lines that may indicate plough marks, left behind as a result of past ploughing activity.  The location of the features beneath the ditch and the spoil from the moat may indicate the site was under arable before the moat was constructed.  All we need now are some artifacts … he says … I’m not after much 🙂

Can you spot the two faint lines at the bottom of Trench 9?
Can you spot the two faint lines at the bottom of Trench 9?

Over in Trench 14, the trench located against the chapel wall, things are progressing and progressing well, although i will admit it is giving me a headache, but that is a story for another day.

Thank you to Rhianna and Freya for all of their help this afternoon in preparing the trench for its next stage of photography and recording, you did a great job.

Rhianna and Freya preparing Trench 14 for the next stage of recording
Rhianna and Freya preparing Trench 14 for the next stage of recording
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