Wednesday 24 June 2015

Binchester 2015: Day Eighteen

My first full day on site this week- despite driving from rain on the way in, we actually had lovely weather all the time we were out. It was busy- with lots of visitors, including  a great group of children, who all proved to be excellent at spotting Roman coins!

Progress is a little slower this week due to our reduced numbers- nonetheless, there have been some interesting developments. In Trench 1, we've identified a roadside gulley cut into the sub-soil alongside the northern edge of the northern intravallum road- it makes a nice change to be excavating negative features rather than wall chasing. Along the edge of the barracks, we've had more lines of our strange post-hole voids appearing marking possible internal or external walls. We're also finding yet more evidence for subsidence- Helen has been excavating a large "pit" which in fact appears to be a sunken metalled surfaced, which is cut by a drainage gully. We've also been ferreting in our road sections- in the area where we thought we'd more or less got to natural, we've now found a large stone kerb or wall running north-south...  no idea what this could be- possibly an earlier road?

In Trench 2, there is still more cleaning up of the external pavements and surfaces around the bath-house. In our small post-hole area, Stephen excavated a small stone setting packed with coal and other burnt material, with lots of splashes of copper alloy - this must be a candidate for part of a metal working hearth.Further to the east, the team are continuing to trowel through the soft grey and brown roadside layers- the presence of various stone settings all hint at something structural here, but nothing has yet resolved itself clearly

Some nice finds today- a lovely little enamelled stud found by Laura, and a strange metal grill or mount and a belt-buckle also from the area in front of the bath-house.

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