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 Post subject: Minutes of WAG 24 Aug 2011
PostPosted: Tue Sep 20, 2011 8:17 pm 

Joined: Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:32 am
Posts: 323
Location: Preston

Minutes of Meeting 24 August 2011 held at Wyrefield Farm Thornton

Present: C Clayton, B Culshaw-Phillips, K Emery, P Emery, D Berry, F Smith,
J Schofield, T Lightbown, H Ricco, B Rigby, D Hampson.

Officers: Chair Chris Clayton, Treasurer Gary Thornton, Secretary Dave Hampson.

1 Chairman welcome: Chris welcomed members to the meeting.

2 Apologies for absence: Brian H, Frank, Michelle, Carlo, Gary.

3 Minutes of last meeting 20 July:

CC read minutes which were approved after amendment of ‘Date of Next Meeting’ as correct record. Minutes are normally posted on Wyre Archaeology Forum a few days prior to meetings. DH will also email draft to members prior to meetings.

4 Matters arising:

a Big Dig: See Excavation Update.
b Battery: In the event it wasn’t necessary to spend on a half share of a battery (for electric fence) since Dave Hammond had one. No deep trenches were left open so there was no hazard to the cattle. The battery has been left with George Parr to use when needed. Although Gary wasn’t able to participate in digging due to other commitments he kindly helped transport equipment.

5 Treasurer’s Report:

Gary reported that the balance in the society’s account was £199.47. A payment of £400 is awaited from the museum in respect of the advance for Brian’s and Michelle’s books. Hilary and Barbara yet again deposited takings from a car boot sale of a further £56.70. This would bring the projected total to over £650.

6 Executive Committee:


7 Correspondence:


8 Excavation Update:

Chris reported that the Big Dig had been limited to 3 days, the final Monday being dropped. He felt that this had been the least successful of the previous dig in respect of finds. A 12 m trench opened on Friday in the ’mound’ area revealed sandy/clay material but very few finds and those of doubtful significance apart from one interesting find of a small leather pouch containing a few Victorian / Edwardian coins.

On Saturday some areas on the top of the hill were excavated: 3 x 1m2 trenches were cut revealing mainly sand but it was felt that as spade and mattock were used, the depth may have been too deep. An area previously thought to have been indicated by a ‘parch mark’ was excavated without conclusion but Chris believed that the trench was in the wrong location by a few metres.

The Sunday dig in 3 x 1m2 trenches revealed an area of possible burning with traces of what was thought to be ash. The trenches also produced barbed wire (maybe representing field boundaries – especially in association with the rectangular ridge) and sand. Carlo and Chris revisited the site a week later and confirmed the area of burning and also found a piece of clay pipe and 2 pieces of (probably modern) glass on the surface of the burned area. This would give a possible date period of AD1590 to 1900. No clear conclusions could be drawn.

Pieces of ‘cannel coal’ are common on the site. This is a variant of coal and burns with a bright light (candle coal) and leaves little ash. The fact that it is common possibly ties in with the possible location of the old Bourne Hall. It is also apparently associated with Roman metal-smelting sites.

On a further day, Dave B and Brian R had cut a section through a supposed post hole but came to no definite conclusion.


There was a general discussion in regard to the excavation report and its implications for continued excavation at the hill. There was a great deal of disappointment that so few finds had been identified but the consensus was that we should devote some limited resources to continued excavation for the remainder of this season in an attempt to reach conclusions about the nature of the site while considering sites for potential future investigation. Dave B offered to take on this role. Some ideas already considered: Mains Hall, Rawcliffe Hall, Highgate Lane Revisited.

DH agreed to ‘poll’ members each week to identify willing diggers. CC will devise a plan of future e digs with the aim of reaching some conclusions about the Hill.
DB will put forward ideas for other potential sites.

Ken proposed a vote of thanks to Hilary and Barbara for their continued fund raising and Hilary suggested spending some cash on another display cabinet for the museum, particularly to accommodate some of Frank’s Roman finds.

Chris reminded those interested that Dot Boughton would be running a seminar on the PAS Database on Friday 2 September at Farmer Parr’s, 10.00 to 4.00.

10 Next Meeting:

Wednesday 21 September July 7.00pm. Please note earlier start time.


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