Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]

From Aug 2006 - Nov 2013 WeDig provided a live forum for diggers & fans of Vindolanda. It has now been mothballed and will be maintained as a live archive.

Here you will find preserved 7 years of conversation, photos, & knowledge about a site many people love. Vindolanda gets under the skin. (Figuratively and literally as a volunteer excavator!) It's a place you remember, filled with people you remember!

Thanks for 7 great years!

2010 excavations forum
Hi all,

With 1 week before 2010 kick off I thought it best to set up the 2010 forum. People may like to separate the areas out later on, but as Vindolanda is one site, it should have one general forum for the 2010 excavations as well, so here it is. This is a big year for the Vindolanda Trust in many ways. The 40th anniversary year of the Trust, the HLF implementation year, and of course we hope that it will be another excellent year on the excavations.

Lets hope for some sunshine.



How much was still left?

The bath house 'niches' go all the way up, through to the roof. They do not 'stop' under the floor. It is an integrated system. They are chimneys really, piping hot air into the walls themselves. It would not be unreasonable for the plaster on the walls to have degraded to such an extent that the chimneys would have been open to inspection above floor level. The basement is not vaulted, it is merely covered. As the chimneys in the main rooms would have been filled with soot, once the covers were removed or exposed, this would fall into the room and be washed about with water from above (which gains entry through the exposed chimney stacks to create a sooty stain which would rapidly spread across the interior plastered surfaces). Giving Hunter the image he described. In fact the failing of the Roman baths house design in northern European countries is that water can easily penetrate into the basement system from the roof. This is why they eventually abandon the idea of using tile in the basements as the constant water erosion rotted them out. They are replaced by stone for this reason. The large stones marked with the masons numbers are the vault stones. We rescued some from the pre-Hadrianic baths which had fallen into the basement. They are marked in sequence so that they can be correctly assembled, like lego. If they were in position as described, the roof was still on.

Despite the fact that many of the 'historians' did not venture into areas where the wall was relatively protected, it was an area devoid of intensive farming or industry, hence its protection. Industry and farming are the main reasons for the destruction post Union of the Crowns. What makes Vindolanda amazing is the level of preservation for all of the buildings, including the later ones. Added to this, the lack of disturbance can be attributed to the large quantities of material culture that is recovered from even relatively late levels. This is in direct contrast to most sites in the area which have been subjected to much greater post medieval pressures including the eventual military road building. There is little doubt that the military road, government grants for land improvement during the Napoleonic Wars become the final tools for destruction. Although until the late 1960's, several miles of the world heritage site was regularly being destroyed in modern quarrying for the manufacture of the UK's motorways.

It would have been helpful if Hunter et al had been artists or were prone to doodling. But as they were not we are so much the poorer.


Human remains?
lead isotope analysis conducted, proved inconclusive. Could have been from anywhere in western empire to north of scotland.

Amazing link for any Wall walker
Missed out the Roman Army Museum and the fort at Magna, tut tut. Shame about that huge oversight.