This week Trench 23 had a range of different activities from sampling in the northern end to aggressive troweling in the southern end. The main areas of focus were Kiln Three and the Steeping Tank with some attention on the possible Kiln Four. Mass sampling of Kiln Three continued until the last day of the week with hundreds of litres of soil being sampled. By the end of the week most of the sampling had been completed.
In Kiln Two investigation of the wall structure began with a small slot being put in which revealed that the walls were mostly soil.
The clay floor north-west of Kiln Four was also investigated showing the heavy ploughing but not revealing more of the floor. A relationship with Kiln Four has not yet been established. It seems more likely at this point that the floors directly north of Kiln Four are related to it.
Over by the steeping tank new investigations began into the `ramp` of clay. The section was first drawn and then slowly it was taken down to reveal the clay floor underneath. Many animal bones and burnt grain were found as well as several patches of daub and a small piece of sheet lead. Investigation is still ongoing but the clay floor has been reached in several places.
The other activity was the reopening of the steeping tank itself starting later in the week. This was started with a general clean and then an investigation of the adjoining clay surface to the north and the wall to the south. In the wall a void - possibly a stake hole (but definitely post-dating the wall as it cut the wall) was found as well as more of the clay. In the floor a mouse (represented by fur and a dark stain) was found of possible Anglo-Saxon date. in addition part of the floor was revealed to be more rubble-like than first thought.
The Church Lecture
Mark McKerracher and Hanna Caroe gave a joint lecture on the uses of the land around Sedgeford and also the brewing process and how much land was needed for it. The list of possible uses of the land was long and very interesting including woodsmanship hunting, building and water management. The lecture was very interesting. Many thanks to Both Mark and Hanna for their lectures.