Monday, 4 May 2009

29 March 2009

We arrived at High Close again today as a party of 12.

We gathered around to hear Roger explain the use the total station – a theodolite with added distance measurement capabilities. The complexities of the trigonometry associated with its operation however, failed to impress us as we slowly began to feel the cold creeping up on us.

Setting out maker flags © Jane Lunnon

We were glad to get moving again and warm up, working on the plans we had started at the last field session. The sun even came out for awhile although it clouded over again later in the afternoon. Eager to complete our drawings, two teams worked hard to make some sense of the complex earthworks in our allocated parts of the field. Marking out the main features with flags we happily measured and drew and hachured all day. Working in a sea of coloured flags we made good progress although it wasn’t always easy working out which linear earthwork was built earlier or later than the next, and defining the breaks of slope was not always clear either.

Lower down the field, Roger used the total station with Ian as helper, and David J. worked on the alidade with Phil’s help.

Roger working with the total station © Jane Lunnon

Alison went off on another long ramble along the enclosure wall, and on to neighbouring walls, examining them in detail for clues to their history. She returned in the afternoon quite excited about some fine examples of walls she’d found nearby.

Despite the good progress the drawings weren’t quite completed – we simply ran out of time. Some of us will just have to turn up at the Saturday session due to take place in a couple of weeks, and finish it then!

Apart from that we can now look forward to the next phase of the project – with some indoor sessions involving oral history, and the resumption of field surveying in the autumn. In the meantime, several of us will be busy enough over the summer working on excavations elsewhere.

Roger explaining the mysteries of the Total Station by Helen

And the Yorkshire Dales Landscape Research Trust website at

Jane Lunnon