30 Saturday 24th April - Laying out the site grid

The team (minus Janet) after a hard day's laying out.  See below for what we did.

Lying on the ground we found more evidence of iron smelting - iron slag, limestone and anthracite coal.

Without the benefit of a geophysical survey, choosing the precise location for the excavation is a little hit and miss and needs plenty of thought.  Though the few finds we had discovered lay down towards the stream, we decided to excavate further up the slope on the grounds that the bloomery would most likely have  been on slightly higher ground.   We nevertheless decided to lay the grid over the lower slope just in case this was incorrect.
We measured the fence and hedge to the north and east and a series of points from which we could located the grid.  This means we can later plot our grid on an Ordnance Survey plan. 

The site grid was created by triangulation but it was difficult to keep the tapes taught and straight in the breeze.  The grid squares were marked with pegs and finally we chose the grid squares which we would excavate first.

Once the grid was in place we decided to survey the levels of the site which had substantial slopes on its eastern and southern sides.  As we were short of pegs we had to resort to twigs!

Here are the notes of our levelling survey grid.  Click on the images to enlarge.

While the levelling was going on some of us were busy keeping the cows away!