Archaeology Trainees recording at Allen Gardens, Shoreditch

A Trainee Roundup of the Allen Gardens Excavations

Josh Frost

Trainee Josh Frost gives us a roundup of the Archaeology Traineeship dig at Allen Gardens and looks forward to the future of what they’re up to next.

Our dig at Allen Gardens has now come to an end. Over the last four weeks we continued to hone and develop our archaeological skills. This has included getting used to working methodically with trowels and mattocks to reveal different archaeological contexts, representing distinct layers of time.

Inevitably, our discoveries sparked a lot of discussion about what we were actually dealing with. It has become clear to all of us that in archaeology you need to be prepared to change your mind!

Another key skill that we had the chance to develop was that of section drawing, which involved making a precise drawing of one our sections. This was a real challenge, leading to many discussions about where one context ended and another began. Needless to say our supervisors, Dave and Leo, had to be very patient with us.

The excavations revealed the full extent of the foundation plinths and the walls on the site. Using the original plans of the school we were able to identify them as having supported the floor of the main school building. It was really great to see how what we found in the ground was reflected in documentary historical sources.

We have now moved onto post-excavation work at Mortimer Wheeler House, which we are really looking forward to telling you all about. Some of us have already had opportunities to further our skills in the field, and we are all excited to continue in to the New Year.

Keep an eye out for more from the Trainees in the coming year. Check out our blog, or follow #I❤Archaeology on Twitter and Facebook for all the latest.

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