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Archaeological Excavation report produced for Bellshiel

February 6, 2020

Our excavation of possible prehistoric features at Bellshiel was carried out in August 2019, in partnership with the MoD and Operation Nightingale. An archaeological evaluation report for the dig has been produced by Wessex Archaeology. You can download the full report here:

The main conclusions of the report are:

  • Excavation of Site 1, a circular embanked feature with similarities to a Bronze Age ring cairn, did not reveal any internal features and no dateable material was recovered. It is most likely to be post-medieval or modern in date.
  • Site 2, which was initially identified as a possible Bronze Age cairn proved to be two stone and earth clearance cairns of uncertain date. Radiocarbon dating was completed on two charcoal fragments found below the main cairn, which returned two late Iron Age/Romano-British dates. This means the cairns must post-date this and may relate to Roman or Romano-British field clearance.
  • Site 3 proved to be a linear earthwork comprising a bank and ditch. A charcoal fragment was recovered but was not suitable for radiocarbon dating. It is likely that this feature post-dates the late Iron Age/early Romano-British period and may relate to land management and agricultural practices connected to two nearby Roman camps at Silloans and Bellshiel.

Plans are currently being developed to carry out future investigations of other potential prehistoric features in this area. Further information will be available here and on our social media pages.

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