Day 25 – A pause to assess priorities

05 Aug chancel burials 2

We are now into the second half of the dig and we need to consider very carefully where we deploy our resources to ensure that we excavate everything of importance by the end of the excavation on 31 August.  One priority is to understand what is happening inside the church, so we are continuing to investigate burials there.

05 Aug chancel burials 1

However, the situation is quite confused and there are burials inter-cutting each other.  This was not a neat graveyard with burials arranged discretely in rows.  It is very clear that graves were being dug one on top of another, that earlier burials were often disturbed by later ones, and they were not very deep.

05 Aug buttress trench)

At the end of the chancel of the standing church, by the buttress, we have cleaned up the area of the path that we were exploring last week.  The ground is very churned up with grave back-fill.  You can see this in the picture above in the section across the path, between the buttress on the left of the picture and the chancel on the right, where there are lots of pieces of chalk mixed up in the soil.  This is all grave back-fill.  We have taken this area down to the horizon where burials are starting to appear.  There is no suggestion that these are anything other than late medieval.  There are no structural remains of interest here, so we will probably close this area down now.

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