Canterbury YAC visit to Iron Age production site at Folkestone

A not so sunny Saturday morning saw 10 YAC members plus leaders on the cliff top above Folkestone getting a chance to dig on Iron Age site thanks to Canterbury Archaeological Trust. Andrew from the Trust explained the significance of the site and the surrounding cliff area, including the adjacent now reburied Roman Villa excavation, which Lynda (then a YAC member and now an Assistant Leader) had been lucky to had the chance to dig on with the YAC members in 2011/12. We were amazed at the number of quern stones (over 200) found on the site and the broken quern stones just laying around where they had broken during manufacturing. The size of the round house, whose virtually completed ditch had been excavated, surprised most of us, as from pictures in the books they seem  a lot smaller.  Felt like we were on one of the earliest factory sites, and we imagined what it must have felt like taking all those hours to carve the stones only for it to crack when drilling the hole through the middle. The YAC members were amused by wondering what the equivalent Iron Age swear word was.

Most of the 10 YAC’s had never been on a dig before so they were given initial tutorial as to how to trowel from Andrew from the Trust, and Isobel one of our new assistant leaders, who had been working on the site in glorious sunshine for the previous 2 weeks . We then put the YAC’s to work trowelling an area under the close guidance of the leaders. Unfortunately, the hot weather had baked the top soil and even through using the sprayer to wet the ground, it was hard work. Whilst everyone thought they had personally not found much by end of the hour digging  Isobel and Andrew were able to show us we had in our finds trays, Iron Age pottery, shells, possible worked flint, animal bone which had been scrapped to get the meat off, as well as animal bones and teeth showing what the diet was. Andrew then showed us the complete domesticated wolf skull they had found carefully buried in the ditch of the roundhouse in the Iron Age.IMG_0874