Sunday, 7 March 2010

8. 3 March 2010

Field Survey

At last a more promising day with no snow and a good, if somewhat chilly forecast – we could really make a start on the surveying!

© Jane Lunnon

Having discussed the plan of campaign, David and Helen Mc. set off with the alidade to survey the banks of the largest mill pond. Ruth, Jane & Peter opted for the area to the west of the site; and Pat & Helen S. took the area to the east; Phil to act as co-ordinator.
Progress was slow to start, with various interruptions - as expected much interest was shown by passers-by, including a welcome visit from the local farmer’s wife; less welcome were the teething problems with the new tripod which gave us a wobbly drawing board – “Where did we put those spare washers for safe keeping?”; and an interesting compass needle which followed both Jane & Ruth around! However at last we were under way and suddenly it was lunch-time.
Sandwiches were eaten in a sheltered hollow by the wall, sitting in the sunshine and with all those thermals on, one could imagine it was summer (well, almost!).
The afternoon saw some re-adjustment of the teams as Helen S. had to leave early and Helen Mc. didn’t fancy sliding down the steep bank into the pond!

© Phil Carroll

Three o’clock arrived all too quickly, but we all felt we had had a good first day. Both teams had succeeded in plotting in the wall and path and David had made good progress on the alidade with the big pond – fingers crossed for next week!

© Jane Lunnon

Documentary Research
The same evening 6 of the Documentary Research team met for a palaeography workshop. Jane had prepared various scripts for us all to transcribe collectively, and under her patient tuition and fortified with tea/coffee and biscuits, we were all surprised how quickly we improved. We were also delighted how much easier the peculiarities of the scripts were to decipher, with practice. We all took copies of several documents home with us for further practice – will it be as easy on one’s own as it was with help from everybody else, I wonder!

Ruth Spencer, UWHG Chairman

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