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    PRE-ROMAN OCCUPATIONAL CAVE SITE DISCOVERED IN BOWLAND

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    lowergate

    Join date : 2010-11-01
    Age : 68
    Location : CLITHEROE

    PRE-ROMAN OCCUPATIONAL CAVE SITE DISCOVERED IN BOWLAND

    Post  lowergate on Thu Aug 25, 2011 9:08 am


    PRE-ROMAN OCCUPATIONAL CAVE SITE DISCOVERED IN BOWLAND

    Today I visited a current archaeological excavation of a newly discovered cave site in the Little Bowland limestone region of the Hodder Valley district. I first became aware of Bronze Age activity on this site back in 1982 and have recorded my speculations in the early BRIGANTIA books on the FOREST OF BOWLAND.

    Tomorrow the team hope to enter the cave, being the first to do so in over 2000 years!

    This is a University funded excavation and the exact location of the site is at the moment on a ‘need to know’ basis. However, after I have made an evaluation of the site tomorrow, I will place further information up on this site to keep folk up to date.

    When the excavation is completed I shall be leading a field trip to view the site and other possible locations as yet unrecorded.

    Paulus - see Email

    john



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    lowergate

    Join date : 2010-11-01
    Age : 68
    Location : CLITHEROE

    LITTLE BOWLAND CAVE SITE cont’ …

    Post  lowergate on Fri Aug 26, 2011 11:30 am

    LITTLE BOWLAND CAVE SITE cont’ …

    Today has been a very busy and fruitful day for me. Up at the crack of dawn and on site in Little Bowland by 7am.

    With the wane of summer and the first call of year-end in the air, now is the time to be out and about from early doors. From now on landscape features are easier to discern. Set the alarm for 4. 30 am., breakfast well, and get out on the trod by the latest 6am. Lolling about in one’s pit beyond 6am. is no way to gain a long and healthy life. Buckwheat and beef broth makes for a good breakfast (salted oat gruel is also good morning fare), lashed down with a few pots of strong unsweetened tea and a roll-up of tabak or two.

    The excavation, that will be going on for the next two weeks, has so far uncovered little other than animal bones from the historical period – pig, hare, mouse, horse, badger and dog, the initial opening may have been an animal set/den at some time. The layers of clay have yet to be removed – scraping, sifting, etc., only then will the group of UCLA PhD students be down to the prehistoric level. I will keep TNA up to date on anything of significance they uncover.

    Another cave site has been opened up for excavation by the group some short distance away but in the same geological strata and series of limestone.

    Altogether the group has identified 17 new cave sites in the area, but only the two above will be investigated this season. A number of these ‘caves’ will prove to be nothing more than natural fissures in the much folded limestone strata.

    The group are following up on the work of Musson (1946 LCHAJ) who found large lumps of bronze slag, being the waste product of smelting, in the Little Bowland area. It is hoped that they will find further evidence of smelting in the area (a Bronze Age settlement site in the near vicinity has been noted by the group – see my early books on the Forest of Bowland www.aussteigerpublications.com for information on early settlement in this area). A great turn up for the book would be the location of the smelting furnaces and related spoil heaps, I wish them all well in their endeavours.

    Fortune was indeed with me today, as on my return to Clitheroe in the early afternoon I decided to take a wander over the Big End of Pendle. Looking down from above Fox’s Well I noticed a circular feature in the moorland landscape below (given the heavy rain of late the moorland grasses are ‘pressed down’ making for good conditions for picking out features in the landscape, especially from high points). Low and behold, when I got down there I discovered a stone-ringed-banked circular earthwork with an entry facing east. The raised stone-reveted bank was 2m in width, and the whole circle roughly 19 paces in diameter. From my initial observation (I will be doing a full survey of the site on Sunday for inclusion on the Lancashire Sites & Monuments Record) I can state that the site is not unlike the one on Easington Fell that we examined on a recent TNA Field Trip, but smaller in size. My first thoughts are that I may have found a Iron/Bronze age living hut, and given the size this may be the case.

    If, and as always with these features it is a big IF, I am proved right in my assumption, then this will be the most significant find from that early period to date in this part of Lancashire.

    The banked-ringwork is located on a high point of ground above the Downhan to Barley road. I shall post the exact location on TNA on Sunday evening when I have Emailed my survey to Peter Isles at Lancs SMR, Preston.

    If anyone wishes to come along on the survey with me on Sunday, feel free to do so. I will be on site at 10.30am. Contact me via TNA mail.

    john

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