Ring of Brodgar Excavation Header
Return to Orkneyjar Introduction Latest News Excavation Diary Excavation Background Archive Stories





Wednesday, July 16
(Previous entries available here)

Hi, I’m Sam one of the students from Manchester University.

We’re into the second week of the excavation now and things are going great, to be honest, I was a bit intimidated when we first began, as I couldn’t believe we were actually digging a site that had once been dug by Colin Renfrew!

After a couple of days work though, I was getting more and more enthusiastic as I realised just how much of a great opportunity this was, and just how much fun field work really is.

We made great progress in the first week, getting Trench C well under way - the last three days we have been working in Bob’s trench - the one abandoned by Colin Renfrew due to flooding.

This trench, Trench A, is bigger than Trench C, so we thought it would take a long time to deturf it all, but with us all working together we got it done in one day - which was pretty impressive.

We are now in the process of cleaning the trench and carefully excavating the amazing rock face. It’s a bit harder going in this trench as it is one of the lowest sections of the site, so all the water naturally collects here, making the soil very heavy.

It will be worth it though, as it's going to look amazing when it’s fully excavated. It should really put in perspective just how much effort the Neolithic people of Orkney put into this monument.

I have really enjoyed my course this year, but this practical experience is definitely the best part of it. It’s really helped show me what archaeology is really about. I’m very grateful to be here on this amazing site with a great group of people.

The weather has been very much on our side so far, although the infamous Orkney winds have been experienced on site.

I’m afraid I’ve got to get back to the trench as there is a still lot more to do. Please check again later in the week to see how we are getting on.

The Ring of Brodgar
The Ness of Brodgar
Orkney's World Heritage Site
Archaeology around the Ness of Brodgar
The Standing Stones of Stenness
Rethinking the great stone circles of Northwest Britain - a paper by Dr Colin Richards