As well as the ditches and pits found on settlement sites the trial trenching also recovered numerous artefacts from these features. The most common types of finds are those that would have been readily discarded or accidentally lost and survive well in the ground and include:

  • Broken pottery
  • Animal bones
  • Iron objects such as nails
  • Small items such as coins and beads

These artefacts can tell us much about the age of a site as well as hint at its function or status. Finds (pictured below) dating from prehistory to the early modern period were discovered during the trial trenching.  Soil samples were also taken from these features as not all finds are readily visible with the naked eye. Much of what was discarded in the past would have been of an organic nature such as green waste, leather and wooden objects.

The underside of a vase recovered from a Roman period site.
A sherd from a base of a high status Roman pot with the stamp of the potter still visible.
A tiny glass bead discovered in one of the trenches. All finds are carefully bagged and labelled for further study.