09 Jul 2024

Summer Dig - Day 3

trench 4
Excavating the first rubble deposit in Trench 4

Not a great deal to report from today's work as once again afternoon downpours slowed and eventually forced an early end to our third day's digging.

We put most of our digging effort into Trench 4 today, which was laid out close to the possible cellar feature we found late last year.

Having finished removing the last of the overburden early this morning we then began excavating a shallow layer of demolition rubble that covered the trench.

As the rubble was removed a distinct change in colour became apparent in the middle of the trench, eventually resolving to a striking line of darker soil crossing the trench almost corner-to-corner.

feature crossing Trench 4
A linear feature crossing T4 with concentration of mortar in its center (click for annotation)

There appeared to be a slight ridge of rubble to one side of the line and the center, whilst having fewer brick fragments, contained a concentration of mortar.

This linear feature corresponds closely to a very shallow linear depression which crosses the site, and a small preview slot, cut just before rain stopped play, showed that the mortar deposit is reasonably deep and definitely has an abrupt edge parallel to the line of the 'ditch'.

There are several possible interpretations for this feature and we won't know what it is for sure until it is excavated more fully, but it could be a robbed out wall line, or there might even be in-situ structure yet to be revealed. It does however call into question the extent of our cellar - if there is a contemporary wall line here it would of course mean that the cellar did not extend this far. The edge of the trench is only about 1.5 metres from the pillar base that we found within the 'cellar' fill last year, so if there is an edge to the cellar it would likely still be within the trench.

It is still early in the dig but we will need some more dry digging days to resolve these and other questions.

With most of our manpower focused on Trench 4 today, not much progress was made in Trench 2. There is a thin but stubborn gravel deposit across the entire trench that will need mattocking out and again this really needs a day or two of dry weather to achieve.


 Previous Story Next Story