Dig 2021: #3 Surveying

21 July 2021

Our borrowed Theodolite from Neil Kermode. John Rae would have thoroughly approved of this marvelous piece of surveying equipment!


Here we have seventeen-year-old Duncan McNeish being trained in its use by Paul Johnson, our Cultural Heritage Professional. Duncan’s interest in the whole project has increased with this brilliant training experience.

moat edge

This is today’s exciting progress on the excavations, overseen by Paul. Gradually we are revealing last year’s levels. The rubble layer in front of the covered steps lies directly on the fill of the dry moat. You can see it going deeper towards the drain, which was placed within it.

Now we have to establish the relationship of the step feature to the original moat. This might throw up some surprises.


This photo shows part of the moat’s edge. It was filled in and the grass growing on the ‘moat’ banks was preserved here for you to see. This was a wonderful discovery! It looked so fresh, but was probably buried in the 1850’s. We can follow this down to reveal the profile of the moat bank. Now we know it was a nice grassy slope, where sheep may have safely grazed.

Andrew  and Krafse

Andrew using the Norwegian krafse. A marvelous archaeological tool sourced for us by an Oslo JRS member.

Photos by Duncan McNeish and Sue Dyke.


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