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SHARP 2023: Week 5

Recording the western ditches

We had more mixed weather this week – it is turning into a rather wet season here on Boneyard but we have still managed to make good progress on trench, despite more cancelled digging sessions. On the bright side, we have caught up on plenty of paperwork and daub cleaning in the marquee when the site has been too wet to dig.

The base of kiln 4 has been reached and it is now being recorded before we try and remove a bit more daub to get a clean section. Kiln 3 next door was also drawn this week and more work has been done on kiln 2 which has also been recorded. The section drawings for these are incredible.

The feature to the North of the steeping tank has been sectioned and the packing stones and post hole fully recorded.

At the top of the hill a section through the white clay has revealed a deposit of daub below and elsewhere the clay layer to the east of kiln 5 seems to be under more burnt deposits.

However the ditches on the western extensions were the star of the show this week as the BERTs have cleaned an area to find the outline of the ditch, while two dig for the days cleaned up a ditch section, where we can see two burning episodes. At the top of the site we are still trying to determine the extent of the features.

The trench in the wood has been cleaned up, recorded, and then back-filled so work here has been concluded for now. Back-filling the trench was a big team effort and we did find some amazing pot fragments coming out of the spoil heap.

Back-filling the trench in the woods

A very wet Tuesday this week meant people ventured off-site and into King’s Lynn where they visited the museum and saw the Sedgeford Hoard on display. Back onsite, the Friends of SHARP annual Tea & Tour went well and one of the Friends even supplied us with cake for everybody! A huge thank you to all our Friends for their continued support in these difficult times. If you are interested in becoming a Friend of SHARP, visit our website to find out more.

We also had a visit from the King’s Lynn pit stop group this week, to let them experience what SHARP is all about. They had a site tour, tried digging, were shown various ancient crafts, and then saw our environmental processing.

Ann was our quizmaster this week and included a song round and also some facts about Norfolk. Other evenings this week have been a hive of activity with people preparing for our own version of Taskmaster, 'Taskmistresses' scheduled for Friday night. With teams making things out of cardboard, and a certain amount of spying and mischief going on, there has been lots of laughter all around.

The event itself on Friday night was a fun, laughter-filled evening with everything from sci-fi costumes, archaeology songs and dances, and a 3 minute historical event, to baby poo tasting, item collecting, and tower building competitions. We even got a couple of karaoke tracks in before we called it a night. Everyone seemed to have a good time and it was a really great end to another week at SHARP.


Keep up to date via SHARP’s Digital Trenches and social media posts! Check out our weekly video blogs about SHARP’s activities this summer on the 2023 Summer Season Digital Trench. The video for Week 3 has now been uploaded and available to view. If you haven’t already registered on the Digital Trenches site, you can do so by via the SHARP website. If you would like to be notified when new content is uploaded, subscribe to the Site News/ Latest News Forum. Follow us on Facebook for our daily updates of progress and discoveries made on trench, posted by Dr Ellie Blakelock in her Director Site Diary.

Are you wondering what to do after the summer season ends? Will you miss the archaeology? Book a place on SHARP’s new online short course! This is a new and exciting venture for SHARP and the Human Remains team have created a course on Cremation and Cremated Remains in Archaeology. You can find out more information on the SHARP website and you can book your place now at the introductory rate of £50.


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