This week I’m talking to Caitlin our finds officer about what happens to everything we find. From when we find it in the ground to what happens to it back at the University. She also shows us some of the cool stuff we’ve found and tells us a little about it!
Big shout out to Caitlin for helping me make this video, I think it might be my favourite one so far!
It’s the last week so here’s my final wrap up! There will still be things on this blog so don’t back out just yet but it is the end of the Malton excavation unfortunately. It’s been gorgeous weather all week (almost too good, it’s hard to work in this heat!) so enjoy some sunny shots. It’s such a contrast to the storm in week 2!
I had a great time on Monday. We did some site tours all morning and it was so great to share the amazing work we’ve been doing with some of the local people. Everyone was really nice and enthusiastic and I love seeing the general public getting excited about archaeology!
In the afternoon we went into Malton to distribute the newsletter we’ve been working on. I also took some photos of the posters we put up last week.
I spent the morning being a ‘real’ archaeologist troweling some rocks then I went off to film with Caitlin the finds officer (thanks again Caitlin!) I also took a huge horse mandible (jaw) out which was fun. Video feat Caitlin coming soon!
The trench was so hot and dry that a tiny shadow cast by a wall was inhabited by some burrowing bees. I hope they vacate before friday or they have a soily surprise coming their way!
We had the day off today. Rather than editing videos all day like I planned to I ended up having to go into town to get a new pair of prescription sunglasses because mine broke on Monday! I also ended up buying an everyday pair as well because specsavers had an offer on. Turns out I won’t be able to pick up my sunglasses till Monday so I bought ANOTHER emergency pair from Tiger. Came out to get one pair and I came back with three! Got some Ice Cream as well so all in all it was a great day. Enjoy these photos of me trying on my glasses via photos so I could send them to my mum.
In the morning we had a lovely visit from the local montessori nursery. It was great to see the kids so enthusiastic, we’ll make archaeologists of them yet! In the afternoon I was giving tours to some people who came a long to say hello, we had a meeting about what us heritage lot are going to do once we’ve finished the excavation and then I was filming student interviews for this blog! I was very very busy all day so no photos I’m afraid.
Last day! It was a weird day on site, everyone trying to get everything finished on time and we were rushing about trying to get the last little bit of content for heritage (thanks to everyone who took time out their very busy to talk to us, much appreciated) and Steve Roskams (site manager) was giving tours and we had quite a few members of the public coming a long asking what we were doing. All in all it was very busy. It was a little sad seeing everything being put away from the last time and knowing that in a few days all our hard work will be covered up again. Even trench-cat came along to say bye! We’ll miss you Malton!
Although that might be the end of the excavation the work is nowhere near done! As far as this blog goes I have a bunch of other videos and posts I want to make. As a year group we had post-excavation processing days to go to and as a department there is still so much sorting and processing that needs doing, it could take months! Stay tuned on here to hear about what we’re doing because there is still more to come!
My first ever experience with excavation was with Newcastle University in 2016. Though I had fun I only spent two days on site and this was nowhere near enough experience to prepare me for the Vindolanda Excavations that I volunteered at in 2018. This time around, in Malton, I feel a little more prepared but I still remember how nerve-wracking starting an excavation for the first time can feel. Most people have never done anything like this before, even if you think you understand what you’re going to be doing nothing can really prepare you for life in the trench. It’ll be physically demanding, you’ll get sunburnt and rained on, you’ll spend hours cleaning the same rock but you’ll have an absolutely amazing time.
I made a video talking about all the things that I learned when I went on a dig for real. If you’re going to be starting an excavation soon and you’re not sure what to expect then this is a good place to start!
Hope you enjoy and I’ll see you on the weekend for a site update!