CAER 2017 Begins... Thursday 4th May!

CAER 2017 Begins... Thursday 4th May!
What will be uncovered this year?
We're back for our 11th season during which examination of trench IV will be continued. Our work will examine the interior of the masonry building (the possible chapel) with its drain discharging into the ditch, the western part of the ditch feature where it is overlain by the medieval building and the underlying deposits. This year trench IV will also be extended to the south in order to locate and examine a stone structure identified during the excavation of a service trench in 2013.
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Monday, 15 May 2017

Day 7 of our training dig and the end of the first full week…Victoria and Neil describe their day…

Victoria B…
The end of the first week has rolled around quickly. Team A entered the trench this morning with a positive attitude ready to excavate the possible pit that was exposed yesterday. The going was tough but after getting through an inch or so of baked soil, it became much easier to remove. Throughout the day more of the pit was exposed and the later culvert and land drain removed. This pit has so far revealed several pieces of black burnished ware including a handle. Friday has been an eventful day and fun even with the turn of the weather.
Team A looking inquisitivly at the pit at the start of the day!

Our day in Grosvenor Park started under grey skies and a light drizzle was falling as we entered the Chester University Experiential Learning Archaeological site. The site has  produced finds relating to Cromwell and the English Civil War, from medieval Chester and back as far as the Roman period, all in just over a week!
The archaeological level we’re currently working on is producing some interesting finds, such as a bone-handled knife and a metal spike. Before we can excavate this layer, the trench had to be cleaned back (a process of removing debris from the current surface), planned (a hand drawn plan of the level, including any interesting finds, the surface content, bricks, slates, bone and features, such as the Victorian drainage ditches) and photographed, concentrating on specific areas of interest, such as the bone-handled knife. These tasks were completed by our group in plenty of time for the specific finds to be lifted from the surface, recorded and taken safely for processing and analysis. 
Ben, Amy and Matt planning the trench...
The bone-handled knife carefully excavated and ready for lifting.

This brought us to the end of our first full week - a week of finds, sun and a couple of beers, as the group we have known for 18 months got to know each other better. Here's to week 3...
To end the week, Dan (site director) gave a round-up of the week's findings and thanked all the students for their hard work this week - a well-deserved rest for all this weekend [Ed.].

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