Avebury Dig 2015 Day 1

It’s that time of year when archaeologists are overcome by an irresistible urge to stumble into a hole in the ground and spend weeks bent double getting  blistered, rain-battered and sunburnt. So here at Avebury we’ve dusted off our trowels, polished up our boots and we’re underway with the Between the Monuments team’s  final year of excavation on the West Kennet Avenue occupation site.

And so it begins: we're digging a site first discovered in the 1930s

And so it begins: we’re digging a site first discovered by Alexander Keiller in the 1930s

Today we’ve been laying out the trenches and starting to strip off the turf to reveal the uppermost layers – which is always hard going. So to offer the team some encouragement (and a well deserved break) we thought we’d show them the sort of thing we’d like them to find.

 

Putting turf to spade: the dig team get stuck in on day 1

Putting turf to spade: the dig team get stuck in on day 1

We didn’t have far to go as we have the finds unearthed by Keiller and his team eighty years ago right next door in the Museum  that carries his name.  Dr Ros and I have had the  task of introducing our newer recruits  to the delights of Neolithic and Bronze Age pottery and stone tools. Some of our troops downed-tools this afternoon and were whisked away to their graduation ceremony   at Southampton University. But they’ll be forsaking their gowns and mortarboards for the trenches again tomorrow.

If you’d like to come and see what they find we’ll be digging every day except Fridays until Friday 7 August. To find us park in the main visitor car park at Avebury and our National Trust team at the welcome trailer will point you in the right direction. We’ll have volunteer meet and greeters on site to explain what we’ve found and every day (starting this Wednesday) we’ll also be running tours of the dig starting at the Barn Gallery of the Museum in the Old Farmyard at Avebury.

You can keep up to date with all of the latest discoveries by following us here on FragmeNTs and via our  AveburyNT twitter feed ( #AveburyDig) and our Avebury National Trust Facebook page.

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This entry was posted in Avebury, Avenue Dig, Dig and tagged , , , , , on by .

About Dr Nick

Dr Nick Snashall is Archaeologist for Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Site. She is fascinated by prehistoric stones, large and small, and their potential for unlocking the secrets of our past. Nick is co-director of Living with Monuments (an AHRC funded research project aiming to address our lack of knowledge of Neolithic settlement and non-monumental activity through targetted fieldwork and archival research into the Avebury region) and Ground -Truthing Stonehenge’s ‘Superhenge’: excavations at Durrington Walls (Current Archaeology's 2017 Research Project of the Year)

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