Clay Pipes and Wet Wipes

Day four of our 2015 season and so far everything has been a resounding success. This morning, we took a picture of progress, cleaning out the trench:

Compared to the first day...

a bit weedy...

This is a genuine testament to the quality of the cleaning work carried out by our dedicated and passionate students - great effort.

Moving on from cleaning mud, to exciting finds: our MA Student, Morgan Jones discovered the part of a 1620's Clay Pipe in the south of the trench. The initials 'RB' were engraved into it - we are still unsure as to exactly what this stands for, but are outreaching to the local, national and international community with ties in the area, who may be able to shed some light onto the meanings. It will also be analysed more excessively at the post-excavation centre at 43 Woodland Road.
Can you help us identify this clay pipe?
We also had the chance to catch up with one of the first year students (BA Archaeology and Anthropology), Charlotte Chan, to get an insight into her first impressions.
First impressions from one of our first years, Charlotte
Engagement team: Is this your first experience of excavating?
Charlotte: Yes, first time hands on with all of the equipment.
Engagement team: So have you had experience on an archaeological site before?
Charlotte: Yes, back in China, in Xian. I have visited the Terracotta Army and the tomb of a Han emperor.
Engagement team: What do you think of the Castle and the grounds?
Charlotte: I think the Castle is great - I did some research before I came for the dig and I found out about the involvement of King Edward II with the castle, and was particularly interested in the scandal regarding his murder. It exceeded my expectations, much different to what I thought I would be doing!
Engagement team: Have you found anything yet?
Charlotte: I found the femur of either a cattle or a horse - it was the biggest piece found on the whole site on the second day. It was about the size of my forearm and was really exciting. I've also found lots of ceramic sherds, and can't wait to dig more over the next week and a half.

We have made a lot of progress in this first few days, and the sun has been shining too. Long may it continue, Berkeley 2015 is going to be the best yet.

Oh and before we forget: the wet wipes have been incredibly useful in cleaning off the Berkeley mud at the end of the day. Hence the blog name. ;-)


  1. Fossils in the past is the most interesting discoveries that all archaeologists aims for. I am also interested to know the history of those facts.


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