Jude’s Trench Summaries – Week 3

As I write this, I’m sitting in trench 1 as we dig deeper into the collapsed wall and rubble, cutting directly through a central ditch. The past two weeks have revealed a number of small but intriguing finds in this particular area of the site. Young members of the team have frequently extracted sherds of pottery and animal bone making for an especially excited atmosphere. The enthusiasm for potential finds here in the week to come is very palpable as I speak to Theo, a key part of the success in this trench. He says, in a determined and unamused tone, “I will find something this week”.
The trench is unique to the rest of the site in that is may represent an earlier phase in the development of the site here at Lower Hazel. Site manager, Joel explains to me that the lower surface of the trench that goes beneath the nearby wall indicates activity that was earlier than the walls themselves.

I venture over the baked earth and tired walls to trench 2 to see what is happening on the other side of the site. We have now excavated a long, thin and deep ditch as we follow what we think may be the foundation cut that we uncovered last week. However there is debate amongst the high ranked members of the dig about this ditch. Some are leaning towards other theories about the large rocks at the bottom of the ditch, postulating it may be a drainage system of some sort. There is no doubt, however, that this lower rock structure is from an earlier time than everything else. The pottery found here seems to be of an earlier typology than those found in other places. Aaron, who has been working this section for the last few weeks, admits this trench is still a mystery. 

In trench 3, there is a collection of busy workers trowelling hard. They explain that they are preparing the trench to be dug deeper into. Trench 3 has been responsible for most of the significant finds during the excavation, including a large part of a ‘Ham Green Pot’, a type of pottery associated with the Anarchy period.

As we come to our final week, there are still intriguing problems to solve in each area of the site. The mysterious story of the Hunting Lodge here at Lower Hazel continues to fascinate. 

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