Archaeology project gets £2,000 grant

A wooden paddle dating back an estimated 6,500 years was found by archaeologists at Bradford Kaims in 2013.
A wooden paddle dating back an estimated 6,500 years was found by archaeologists at Bradford Kaims in 2013.

A grant of almost £2,000 has been secured by the Bamburgh Research Project for archaeological work at its Bradford Kaims site.

The funding of £1,992 from the Moray Endowment Fund, of the University of Edinburgh, is for comparative research into the geo-archaeology of burnt mounds and associated soils.

This will allow archaeologists to look in great detail at a larger suite of micromorphological samples from the burnt mounds at the Bradford Kaims and from the fills of some relict streambeds associated directly with the burnt mound use.

Thin-section micromorphology involves the microscopic analyses on in-situ sediments and soils and seeks to understand better what archaeological sediments consist of, where they came from, how they got to where they are now and the processes that have changed them since they were deposited.

“Through this form of study we already know that some of the earlier burnt mounds at the Bradford Kaims were deposited seasonally probably in summer and autumn and vary widely in their fuel types from small Roundwood charcoal through to grasses and sedges,” posted the Bamburgh Research Project on its blog.

“From this, and with our wider landscape analyses, we are able to understand better the movements and activities of people living around the Bradford Kaims in the Neolithic and Bronze Age, and how they interacted with their environment.”

In October, the Bradford Kaims project was also awarded funding grants of £1,500 from Northumberland County Council’s Community Chest scheme and £756 through Heritage at Risk and the county council’s conservation fund to undertake radiocarbon dating.

The Bradford Kaims project, which started in 2009, involves the Bamburgh Research Project working with the local community and universities to investigate ‘a truly remarkable ancient wetland site’, around Newham Bog, located near the village of Lucker. The group’s other research focuses on Bamburgh Castle.