Tr 3 (The Kinecroft) Diary Entries
Friday 8th August, 2008
That's it, the excavation is over! Many thanks to all the students and volunteers who worked hard to get everything excavated and recorded in such a short time!
A sad moment as the site is backfilled and the tools collected.
Jim Baxter, local 'digologist' back at work, this time infilling the trenches and compacting the soil for us with his machine.
The excavation of the Kinecroft trench has certainly been very successful, with much exciting archaeological evidence revealed throughout the three weeks. This final photograph of the trench prior to it being backfilled shows the outline of the building clearly shown in the centre of the trench. It would have been of timber construction with sill-beam foundations, over 6m in length and width (the full size is unknown as it continues into the edge of the trench to the east and west).
Whilst the trench revealed no evidence for the geophysical anomlies showing two concentric circles, the trench has revealed fresh new evidence showing that the now open intra-mural space of the Kinecroft once had buildings on it at some point between the 12th to 13th centuries.
Further post-excavation analysis of the archaeological data recovered will now take place, and the results will be published soon.
Thursday 7th August, 2008
Lots of recording was needed for the final full day of excavation at the Kinecroft.
The east-west beam-slot fully excavated.
Wednesday 6th August, 2008
Diggers interviewed on live the 'Danny and Lou' show
Suddenly the Kinecroft is the centre of attention for the whole of the region
Today was our five minutes of fame as BBC Radio Oxford and BBC South visited the Kinecroft and the other trenches.
Despite the interruptions, worked continued with the excavation of the the new beam-slot seen heading into the edge of the trench.
At the north-end of the trench any evidence for a track-way unfortunately seems to have been lost or truncated away by later pitting and gravel quarrying. Although more evidence for a further building heading west has been revealed in the other extension to the trench (more on this tomorrow!!)
Tuesday 5th August, 2008
Despite the (very) wet weather we've begun to make a bit more sense of the north-end of the trench. We're trying to establish if this area represents a 'hollow way' (a worn track-way or street), or an area of quarrying - perhaps a combination of the two? We have three days remaining to help clarify this!
Work continues at the intersection between the two beam-slots. Another beam-slot can be seen heading towards the bottom of the photo into the extended part of the trench. Tomorrow we'll excavate this!
Monday 4th August, 2008
We're now extending the trench along the west edge to fully characterise a layer running adjacent to the north-south beam-slot. What could be?? another building perhaps...?!? Keep watching this space...
Sunday 3rd August, 2008
Our second open day was very successful with plenty of interested visitors.
measuring along the length of a beamslot
planning the features
an archaeological plan
Saturday 2nd August, 2008
After a relaxing day off on friday, we awoke to a rainy morning. Unperturbed we attack our features with gusto. Many thanks to the four students who have departed from the project, a slightly new-look team takes over for the final week...
Friday 1st August, 2008
Our day off! Come back for updates at the weekend.
Thursday 31st July, 2008
We've now excavated most of the building. This picture shows the south-end of the building from above. Rosa & Sian are excavating the two main beam-slots. Towards the top-centre of the picture can be seen a smaller beam-slot (a room division?), beyond is a shallow pit (a partly cellared room?).
Work is now focusing at the north-end of the trench. Is there a street / trackway (or quarry?) lying below the soil layers? or more evidence for the building? Watch this space as we go into the final week of excavation...
Wednesday 30th July, 2008
The Kinecroft crew admire their large spoil heap (and their little castles!)
The building is beginning to show up well. The excavated sections show the line of the beam-slots running east-west and north-south in the central area of the trench (along the lines of ranging rods).
Tuesday 29th July, 2008
The north-south beam-slot under excavation. A further archaeological feature has now been discovered running along the same line as the beam-slot being excavated in the picture. This may indicate a further building lying to the west of the trench, clearly there is much still much to be done to help resolve the mystery and history of the Kinecroft...
James shows Judy the numerous finds from pits towards the south-end of the trench (and the rear of the building?).
Finds from the numerous excavated features are beginning to suggest a post-Conquest, 12th century date for the building (please note this is subject to change!!)
Monday 28th July, 2008
Berenice and David P hard at work...
The beam-slots are clearly visible here...can you spot them?
A beam slot being recorded by Sofia, and excavated by Adam.
Sunday 27th July, 2008
These boots aren't made for walking...(or digging)
Much activity in the trench today!
Saturday 26th July, 2008
Our open day proves to be very popular...
...as the students show the latest finds from the excavation.
We have now begun to excavate more archaeological features including this beam-slot (this forms part of a timber structure). The plan of the building is becoming clearer as more is excavated. We will provide more details on this building over the next few days! At the base of this feature the remains of various animals were recovered, including a jaw bone seen in the section.
Friday 25th July, 2008
No work today, a much needed day off to relax and prepare for a busy weekend!
Thursday 24th July, 2008
The excavation is creating much interest with the local community.
As work continues with more recording and trowelling.
Kayleigh talks through the finds and features to an interested group of locals.
Ivan begins to excavate an archaeological feature! What will he find?
James discovers that mattocking is better than a workout in the gym.
Whilst the students rest, project leaders Matt, Neil, and Olie show them how its done!
Wednesday 23rd July, 2008
After yesterday's trowelling, the next step is to draw a plan of the archaeological features revealed. Gavin is in the foreground setting out the grid, whilst trowelling continues beyond in the remaining part of the trench.
A pre-excavation plan of the trench is underway, this will help us identify the nature and extent of the archaeological evidence.
Trowelling continues, whilst planning also continues...
At the end of the day, as the students head to the pub, a clean trench remains. The archaeological features are beginning to become more visible. Look closely and you should see pits and ditches in the foreground. In the middle of the trench, close to the ranging rods, is evidence for a timber structure of possible Saxo-Norman date. Tomorrow we will begin to excavate these!
Tuesday 22nd July
Following the machining the students were let loose in the trench...
The trench needs to be cleaned with a trowel so archaeological features would become more visible.
As the trowelling progressed more features began to be revealed, can you spot them?
the finds team gets to work!
Monday 21st July
On first impressions we seem to have some extremely interesting features showing up, with possible pits, ditches and even beamslots - of as yet unknown date. The linear features are aligned parallel with the nearby ramparts and also the line of the (hypothetical) projected course of a Saxon street). Some late Saxon and medieval pottery, along with some finds of post-medieval date, were found in the subsoil. None of the features show up well in the photo below, but they are there, and will be revealed further when we scrape over the surface with trowel and spade tomorrow. This trench will be one to watch.
The success of archaeological excavations depends greatly on the skill of the machine driver. A good one can use the ditching bucket like a giant trowel. We were lucky to have the services of local Wallingford man Jim Baxter, who has clearly done this sort of thing before. Taking off the topsoil and subsoil we came down onto a surface into which archaeological features are cut at about 0.6 - 0.8m down.