5 years ago

Archaeological investigation and charcoal analysis of charcoal burning platforms, Barbon, Cumbria, UK

In October 2013, small-scale excavations were undertaken at Barbon Park, Cumbria, on a series of features interpreted as former charcoal production sites. This formed part of Historic England's National Archaeological Identification Survey (NAIS) Upland Pilot: Lakes and Dales. The charcoal burning platforms were identified initially from aerial survey using a combination of aerial photographs and airborne laser scanning (lidar) data. Charcoal samples were recovered and chronological modelling shows the production sites to be post-medieval in date. Analysis of the charcoal recorded the dominance of Fraxinus, together with Maloideae/Prunus type, and lesser contributions of common woodland taxa, including Ilex and Hedera. Documentary research into the possible uses of the charcoal has proved inconclusive, although it seems that gunpowder and lime production can be reasonably discounted.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S1040618216307418

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