Relatively few people on site, although we continued to make good progress. In Trench 1, the last two days have seen real movement on the intervallum road. The camber is really very apparent and we now have three of the lateral drains which cross the road. Between the road and the barrack we can see several very distinct areas of stone surface indicated by much larger flags than the surrounding cobbles. The south end of the barrack is looking good, with stretches of proper coursed walling appearing beneath the rougher stretches of wall above. We've also really cleared out part of the interior- it is now looking very much like that part of the southern area of the barrack may have been re-used as a smaller structure of probable medieval date (contemporary with the other medieval building)- it uses the east wall of the barrack but has a rough western wall that lies within the footprint of the main barrack structure. Elsewhere lots more work on unpicking the pits and their associated working areas. Some nice finds including the nice but very unusual animal tooth (cow or horse) that appears to have been reworked into the shape of a bird's head. I've never seen anything like it- anyone have any parallels?
Meanwhile in Trench 2 the western end is starting to resolve itself with clearer evidence for another oven and other layers/surfaces starting to be clarified. Also more tinkering in Building 2, with clay layers being removed from the interior floor. The main building here is also looking very good. We found a almost intact pot (very rough hand-made grey ware) lying upside down at the base of the pit (probably deliberately placed) very close to a circular copper alloy object which had corroded onto a lump of iron.
Meanwhile off site there was lots of project work going on behind the scenes and we've made real progress in our plans to recreate a simple Roman kiln in the Botanical Gardens in DUrham. We're off to Segedunum and the Great North Museum on Sunday but (weather permitting) will be back on Monday.
This blog will share information about the major new field project at the Roman fort of Binchester (Co. Durham), run jointly by Durham County Council, the Dept. of Archaeology, Durham University and Dept. of Classics, Stanford University and the Architectural and Archaeological Society of Durham and Northumberland. It will communicate news, events, and once the field season starts a daily update of the discoveries on site. To find out more visit our website