The final day, nose to the grind stone, no tea break and a late lunch.
Martin cracked on with the last of the drawing and recording, Carol and Millie finished digging the eastern end. I attacked the possible second kiln/oven and finished revealing the opening of the first one. Rob and Fay went for the natural bedrock in their trenches, with help from Clive and his digger 🙂
Due to the efforts of all the diggers Clive only needed to do one scoop to hit the bottom of the burnt mound material, the thin buried soil it was sat on and he top of the natural bedrock. The layer under the mound was very pale grey and silty. We took a sample of this to look for pollen and to look at the soil make up, one of many samples taken through the mound.
The kiln/oven finally gave up its form, the charcoal spread out of the opening. The second kiln/oven had a layer of burnt clay but no charcoal under that layer, just a brown soil, but one side of the opening was very clear to see. Both had an opening facing the same way, west-south-west.
The charcoal was very well preserved as I found earlier. It’s amazing that the structure of the wood is locked by burning and we will be able to see what species it was thousands of years later.
Then the sad moment came for Clive to start filling in the trench, and time for us to eat a sandwich, re-hydrate and have some Women’s Institute lemon drizzle cake provided by Fay. Yummy!
We had one last task to do, with Clive happy to help we just dug out the area next to the kiln/oven to see if we had another one to the inland side, alas we didn’t but it was worth a look as we would always have wondered.
With one last look at the cliff edge that had been our ‘office’ for two weeks we headed down to pack up the tools and then for a well earned cuppa.
We will post updates about all the samples we took and the radiocarbon dates as we get them back from the specialists. The pottery and flints need washing before we send them for identification and dating. So keep watching the blog.
NEWS – The next dig will be Chedworth Roman Villa, from 18th August, see you there 🙂