THE WALLINGFORD BURH TO BOROUGH
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THE WALLINGFORD BURH TO BOROUGH RESEARCH PROJECT QUEEN’S ARBOUR EXCAVATIONS, 2010 PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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THE WALLINGFORD BURH TO BOROUGH RESEARCH PROJECT QUEEN’S ARBOUR EXCAVATIONS, 2010. The curving stone structure Back in 2003 a geophysical survey detected a buried stone structure in the Queens Arbour meadow, jutting out from Wallingford Castle earthworks towards the River Thames.

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THE WALLINGFORD BURH TO BOROUGH RESEARCH PROJECT QUEEN’S ARBOUR EXCAVATIONS, 2010

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The wallingford burh to borough research project queen s arbour excavations 2010

THE WALLINGFORD BURH TO BOROUGH

RESEARCH PROJECT

QUEEN’S ARBOUR EXCAVATIONS, 2010

  • The curving stone structure

  • Back in 2003 a geophysical survey detected a buried stone structure in the Queens Arbour meadow, jutting out from Wallingford Castle earthworks towards the River Thames.

  • In July 2010 the Wallingford Burh to Borough Research Project teamed up with Wallingford Museum to excavate the structure. The dig was carried out by a combination of academics, students from universities of Leicester, Exeter and Kent, and local volunteers.

  • Chalk rubble, no doubt brought by barge along the river, had been placed in a V-shaped cut, to a depth of about three feet, to prevent the walls above sinking into the alluvial clays. This was then faced on the outer side with roughly worked chalk blocks. The construction was carried out in sections of roughly equal length, probably by different gangs of workmen, making the outer face faceted rather than a true curve.

  • The exact nature and function of the superstructure - a defensive bastion, a quay or wharf, a high-status elevated walkway, or indeed a combination of all these things - is still not known with any certainty, but it is likely to have served multiple purposes, linking the castle with the river. The known extent of Wallingford Castle has grown significantly in size as a result of this discovery!

  • The structure was provisionally dated by pottery finds to the 13th century. It was cut in two places by a later channel, which might have served to bring water from the river to a mill located further downstream.

Over 200 people came to view the excavations on Open Day.

The annual children’s excavation area was very popular once again.

Viewed from the spoil heap, the U-shape of the structure can be clearly seen.

A wall’s eye view of the excavation in progress.

Taking environmental samples. Analysis of samples from layers outside and inside the wall could shed light on its function.

There was a curious step at the front end of the structure.

This aerial photo has the approximate position of the 2010 excavation trench overlaid onto the results of the 2003 geophysics results. North is at the top.

Cutting through the stone wall in two places was a later linear feature thought to be the head race for a mill located further to the south. It contained many nails, presumably from a timber cladding.

Students from the Universities of Leicester and Kent, on their first training excavation.

The 2008-2010 Project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council and is a joint academic venture between the archaeology departments of the Universities of Leicester, Exeter and Oxford. The project is run in collaboration with Wallingford Museum and The Wallingford Historical and Archaeological Society (TWHAS), and is supported by Wallingford Town Council, South Oxfordshire District Council, Oxfordshire County Archaeology Service, English Heritage, the Northmoor Trust, the Ashmolean Museum and Reading Museum.


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