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The campsite

The campsite is the place where we spend most of time while not working, we sleep there, we eat there, but most important we live there in community. This have advantages - you"re never alone, gathered with all your friends - but could make some difficulties: even if everybody is friendly, there was a few arguments, you have to do chores... But it is part of the archeological life. Indeed, it is rare that you will have a room near you excavation. So this is a very good trainning!

The buildings


The first picture shows the first things you will see when you arrive at the campsite.
The first impressions so!
The car park, first, but also the toilets which is the white tank on the right, then the way to the tents on the right top corner, and you can see the top of the big marquee on the left.

The second picture is what you can see if you look back.

The Marquee

The marquee is where you may spend most of your time at the campsite: you can talk here, have breakfast and dinner, read, play games, and even work if it's raining! Plus you have to cross it whenever you want to access the other buildings, and there is always people that will convince you to stop there for a moment! The first picture shows the marquee whille going from the tents or the entrance of the campsite. Then the second picture shows the inside. As you can see there is plenty of room, but it's always full of everybody's stuff! The third picture finally shows the marquee when you have crossed it and if you look back. As you can see, we respect the ecosystem by separating our dishes!

The office

Here is the outside of the office.

It is mostly occupied by the supervisors and the field school students, but you will be welcome inside if they are not working and if you don't break things!

You can see on the wall the planning board.
Now we are inside.

As you can we stock there a large part of the archeological materials: the TST, the dumpy level, the maps and section drawings, the finds... but also the lunch boxes, the first aid kit and finally all the stuff you need to plug in your mobile phone or labtop.
Some years you can also buy snack there.
The office also have a library.

You will absolutely need to read most of those books if you are part of the field school, in order to write your essays, but it is anyway strongly recommended to read a few of them because they deal with archeological methods and with the archeology in Wales.

You can borrow two of them as long as you want by filling a short list, but don't forget that the students may also need them!

The kitchen

The kitchen is full of all the equipment you may need.
Enjoy yourself!

On the left picture, you can see a table near the dishes. It is where you have to put your plates, glasses... when you are finished. Indeed you can't enter the kitchen except if you have to do the chores, for evident reasons: hygien, safety...

On the right you can see Paddy as the chief cooker!

The tents


This is the long and hard way you have to cross when you are tired and want to join your tent as fast as possible!

If there are sheeps in the field, which can happen as this year, don"t forget to cross the fence behind you or they could mess around in the campsite!

However after a few days you will be tired of opening and closing it every five minutes and you will just jump over it!
Finally, if you go to bed late, be quiet!

The tents

On the top of the field, are all the tents aligned.
You can brought your own but also can borrow one.
Here are a few views so you can see in what Spartan conditions you will sleep!
But they are clean and quite waterproof, and this is anyway good for you!

Tribute to the toblerone tent:
-two people or two sheeps sided tent
-took a few hours to set up
-collapsed a few times due to wind
But it is traditionnal!


Washing up

Here is the most intereting part and surely this is why you came here!
As every other chores, you will wash with three or four people, and learn to manage your team!

Anyway the teams turn, and the more people there are, the less you will wash up.
So bring all your friends with you!

Cooking and serving

Don't panic! You do not need to know how to cook, you will be under the responsability of a real chief cooker!

The meals are quite good and diversified: pies, burgers, chili, potatoes, sausages... and we always do an alternative meal suitable for vegeterians!
After cooking you will have to serve everybody.
But it's ok, then you can serve yourself the best part!


You also have to make the sandwiches for the day after.
Try to make two sandwiches per person, make them diversified and qui complete, and make some for the vegetarians.

The inconvenient of being popular is that everybody will then ask you to make special sandwiches for them, and you will have to remember all the orders!


Picture on the left: check your chores on the planning board or it will be no good for you!
Picture on the right: the What-not-do of making sandwiches for dummies!

Archeological work

After work

Yes, even the campsite isn't safe!
You may have to work there!

Here you can see Matt, as a supervisor, finishing a map or verifying it, right after we came back from the excavation.
If you found something during the excavation, supervisors or volunteers, like Heather here, have to classify them: filling papers, putting them in find bags ect...

If it's rainning

If it's rainning - I mean really pouring, althought it's average British weather and you will have to work anyway - don't think there will be a day off!
Everybody will just gather in the marquee and clean the finds ( as you can see here) or do so the flotation, that is to say search for tiny bits of bone, charcoal, steel, daub... in samples of soil coming from different parts of the excavation sites.
Those samples have been in the flotation machine, which keeps the heavy rocks and only leaves the potentially interesting samples.

At the end

Finally if you stay untill the very end of the excavation you will have to clean the equipment so other people will find it all shiny the year after!


After work

Right after work, you probably won't be able to do anything else than chilling and explain why your day was better - or worst, depending on your personnality ! - than anyone else's.

You will then be pleased to learn than you can drink tea and coffee!


If the weather allows it, you may eat outside all at the same table, but anyway you can eat in the marquee.
We eat around 19 o'clock so everybody will have rested and so dinners are quite animated.

And don't worry about the quantity, you can always take a second plate!
If there is a real man this year, you may watch the fagot competition.
The challenger has to eat the more fagots - welsh balls of meat the side and the aspect of monkey brains - he can in a single dinner. The previous record was 13 fagots!


There are in the office a few games like Scrabble, Monopoly, Pictionnary...
You can borrow them and play whenever you have freetime.
This year the fashion was at Scrabble, which some played every evening.

The great winner is Matt you can see here, who won by about "two millions of points".

There were only a few outsider who thought poker was cooler than Scrabble.
But there weren't any chips, so we played with tea, salt and pepper...
Untill someone asked if we wanted to play Monopoly.
Well, he never played it, but the bills were usefull!


Around the campsite

In your freetime you can also visit around the campsite.
On the left is a small church, but unused today.
On the left the totem you will pass in front of everyday if you work at the fort.
It is said to be holy.


You're not dreaming, there were black agressiv sheeps chilling around our tents! They managed to jump over the fence but couldn't do it the way back. They also used to fight together.

The van

Here is the van which we take to drive to the farm, or to the evening visits, or also to the supermarket. It is quite comfortable, and can pick up around 17 persons.


The campsite produces its own electricity!


During the night, the toilets are filled with those cool and high colored moths, so you don't feel lonely!
A lot of people took pictures of them, so I had to talk about it.