Issue 147

Newsletter – Issue 147, March 2004


The next Shorewatch survey is planned for Tuesday, 25th May starting at 10.30 am.

Corstorphine and Dalmeny

Planning is starting to move for the resistivity surveys on these two sites. The intention is that the Corstorphine survey will happen mid-summer after most of the work at Cramond is completed and that the Dalmeny survey could be our ‘public’ activity in Archaeology Month (September). Historic Scotland have accepted a grant application from us to cover not only expenses on these two sites but also for the survey work being done east of Cramond House. We record our thanks to Historic Scotland for their continued support of our work.


The first visit of the year has been made after a rather hurried arrangement. We had the use of an EDM for a very limited period and the opportunity to complete (we hope) the topographical survey of the site was too good to miss. We have, unfortunately, not yet been able to set up regular days to work the site. Last year the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland gave a grant towards our expenses at Penicuik and, encouraged by this, we made an application for a further grant for the 2004 season. We were pleased to be informed that this grant application has been successful and record our thanks to the Research and Finance committees of the Society of Antiquaries.

Cramond in March

A number more 20 by 20 metre squares have been completed and our printout, on show at the Council for Scottish Archaeology AGM at Cramond, was commented upon by Mike Middleton of Headland Archaeology who have a contract to pull together all the bits of Cramond that have been surveyed or excavated. Our surveys to date have been incorporated into the Headland plan and Mike has ‘attempted a little interpretation ‘ (his words) of our data.
The recent report ‘Historic Cramond’ by Marta McGlynn Associates for the City of Edinburgh comments under the heading ‘The Early Formal Landscape’ that ‘the survival of any below ground archaeology of an accompanying 17th-18th century formal garden remains to be verified.’ A number of Mikes interpreted lines are parallel with the tree avenue aligned on Berwick Law so we may be starting to see the garden that was later superseded by parkland. But there are a lot of interpreted lines that run NE-SW apparently at right angles to the Roman road leaving the fort!
A lot more work yet to do but I will push my luck and say again – we might just be permitted to dig!

Field Walking and Metal Detecting at Mumrills

Several EAFS Members attended the above event on Sunday, 21st March which was organised by Geoff Bailey with the permission of Historic Scotland. Fraser Hunter of NMS also attended to assist with identification of finds. The area – a large ploughed field of Mumrills Farm which included the Principia and part of the Commander’s House was field walked and a considerable quantity of pottery and some metalwork, including one probable Roman Coin was recovered.
One point of interest was that the area of the Commander’s House was strewn with large quantities of box flue tile fragments which were nearly all marked by criss-cross lines rather than the ‘combed’ finish which was generally found at Cramond.

Dates for your Diary

Monday, 12th April. Antiquaries Open Event (during Science Festival Week). 6pm – From Aberdeen to the Alps: the story of the Amesbury Archer.
Wednesday, 21st April. EAFS lecture – Dr David Caldwell of the National Museums of Scotland on Change and Continuity in Scotland in the 12th and 13th Centuries.
7th, 8th & 9th May. The Rhind Lectures – Professor Michael Lynch on Court, Capital and Country.
Tuesday, 18th May. EAFS lecture – Adrian Cox (SUAT) on Recent Excavations at Horse Cross, Perth.
Saturday, 29th May. Archaeological Research in Progress in North East Scotland. Day conference at University of Aberdeen. More details from CSA, Chambers Street, Edinburgh EH1 1JF, tel. 0131 247 4119
Tuesday, 8th June. Warfare and Violence in the First Millennia in Scotland and Beyond. Day conference in Edinburgh arranged by the First Millennia Studies Group. Speakers include Ian Armit, Ian Ralston, Simon James, J D Hill, David Breeze and Alex Woolf. They are keen to get an indication of numbers so those interested are asked to email Simon Gilmour on