Nest of Stones Neolithic prepared for disassembly and reassembly for archiving

Pre disassembly, the large central stone is held up by three smaller chock stones . And a quartz pebble is secreted away below this large stone.
Negative image where chock stones and quartz pebble removed
Filled by plaster of paris and bandaging.

Reverse of dried plaster of paris following being lifted. The attached sand will be removed gradually and a mould will be made to allow the nest of stones to be reassembled off site. Check back for updates.
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Finds processing ongoing

A prehistory worked tool

The above find having its number drawn for posterity
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Trip to Liverpool World Museum & St Georges Hall

Return Of The Gods

Runs until 25th February 2024

The History Whisperer

A hybrid digital and tour of the courtroom and viewing of the main hall

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Magnetometry survey of latest phase in Mottram site under the low cloud over Neolithic Tameside

Removal of top soils to expose the lower archaeology layers associated with prehistory in Tameside. This survey was previously undertaken prior to the grass being removed. The two surveys will enable an evaluation of magnetic activity in the more modern soils and what if any persists at The Neolithic level.
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Talk on ground stones at Conference

TAS member Kevin Wright will be talking about results from a Mottram site where stones found on site will be discussed, their uses, their distributions and how they may have related to prehistoric people living on the land in Tameside.

The annual archaeology day, hosted by the Greater Manchester Archaeological Advisory Service in conjunction with the Greater Manchester Archaeology Federation, is to be held at the University of Salford on Saturday 25th November 09:30 – 17:00. The venue is Peel Hall in the Peel Building at the University of Salford. Click on the following link to purchase a ticket. £10 or £5.

Archaeology | University of Salford

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Neolithic Workshop

The two stones; the smaller one is granite and the larger sandstone.

Recently digging on our Neolithic site we came across these two stones embedded in the natural interglacial sand. Both had evidence of having been used as small anvils.

One would imagine that the smaller, granite stone would have been used for working flints, while the larger sandstone piece might have been used to work wood.

The depressions in which they sat did not seem to have been cut, as such, but it makes sense that the stones would have been purposely pressed into the sand to achieve stability. There was a fine line between creating a good flint and wrecking one, so they needed a good surface to work on.

It’s fascinating that simply from two stones in the ground we can begin to build a picture of the lives and working practices of people from thousands of years ago.

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The New Season Beckons

With spring comes the prospect of unearthing new treasures. Well, old treasures hopefully. And by treasures, we don’t mean hoards of gold coin. A post hole, a change in the colour of the earth, a piece of flint or a broken shard of pottery could be all we need to indicate that we have found something worth further exploration.

Take the site below, recently de-turfed, ready for the new season. We already know that it is within a few metres of a Neolithic hearth. What we find in the coming weeks and months could give us a significantly fuller picture of how the site was used by people so many years ago.

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A Visit To Warrington Museum

In early April a small but intrepid group of TAS members ventured as far as Warrington to enjoy a guided tour of the museum there.

A very knowledgeable member of staff took us through the many different rooms to see the multitude of varied and fascinating exhibits. The cabinets were bulging with artefacts and a great deal was packed into our hour-long tour. A selection of what we saw is shown below.

To wrap it up we were treated to a tour of Warrington centre, courtesy of TAS member Marlene, who lives nearby. Probably the feature of this was seeing the famous Grade II listed Golden Gates.

A mask from the ceramics gallery.
Funeral Jars
Masks and figureheads
More masks and figureheads
Glass Artefacts
Some quite beautiful glass work
This fish was made entirely out of drinks cans!
And finally at those amazing golden gates.

Why not pay a visit yourself? The museum also houses an art gallery!

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Another Nice Find

Marlene, a TAS member, recently came up with another kitchen utensil that
probably broke its handle some 5000 years ago.

A keen digger, Marlene discovered the stone whilst digging on a TAS site near Mottram.

The stone is local fine sandstone and  has been reduced down in thickness
and shaped. The edges show the tell-tale effects of its use with wear
along two sides. The stone would have been longer but has broken when
being used in the prehistoric period. It was discovered in an
area of the dig along with flints and stakeholes that may be associated
with the production of daily-needed materials or the processing of food.

This artefact, along with other stones found on the prehistoric site, suggests that a number of people might have been using stone tools, either within one  or several generations from this period, a time when many people farmed the land.

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Moorland Excavation

This view from local moorland, overlooking Manchester, shows TAS volunteers deturfing in preparation for a fresh dig on an old site where we are looking to build on previous knowledge, supplemented by the results of carbon dating.

A magnetic anomaly a few metres away revealed a fire pit which was dated to around 6000 years BC.

The mesolithic site has further anomalies which are going to be evaluated by volunteers over the next two weeks under the supervision of Ron Cowell, Curator of Prehistory at Museums Liverpool.

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