We are into the last week of the excavations at the Burn of Swartigill in Caithness, and we have achieved all our key objectives for this season.
We are approaching the halfway point of this season’s excavations of early Iron Age structures at the Burn of Swartigill at Yarrows in Caithness, and we are making good progress.
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute have teamed up with Yarrows Heritage Trust to re-commence the community excavation of possible Iron Age structures at the Burn of Swartigill on 20th August.
Another season of excavation at the Swartigill Burn has ended. The day excavation seems to have flown by so quickly, and we have made a great deal of progress towards defining the form of the structures in the trench.
A most intriguing object emerged from the earth at Swartigill, Caithness – an object that perhaps sheds some light on the function of the site.
The Swartigill excavation is a community dig. This means that local people are involved at all stages of the process and local volunteers receive basic training in archaeological methods and help with the actual dig.
Monday was a bit disrupted by the snow, but we got a good afternoon’s work in and made some good progress defining the rest of the rubble and possible structural features in the north end of the trench. As you can see in the photo, there are numerous possible wall lines and linear features showing through.
Despite everyone’s best intentions, it was obvious by around 9.00am on Day Two that the dig could not continue. The whole area took on the characteristics of a well-shaken snow globe as the cold combined with the snow to make conditions impossible.
Sunday, April 23, dawned with an early ferry crossing as the team from the University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute bounced over the Pentland Firth en-route to Caithness and the Swartigill archaeological excavation.
The University of the Highlands and Islands Archaeology Institute have teamed up with Yarrows Heritage Trust to commence excavation at the Burn of Swartigill on April 24.