Day Four: Bryher


You’re stuck. The Scillonian’s not sailing today!

Leaving proved impossible as there was no boat! Undaunted our team headed off to Bryher to check out a site below Bonfire Carn. This site, a eroding Bronze Age? structure with occupation layers, has been noted for many years and has previously produced the only sherd of possible Beaker pottery on the islands.   On the island we met up with more interested individuals and headed out along the shore in the sunshine.

The site was still clearly visible and individual stones, recorded on previous trips, could still be identified and we noticed a new organic deposit along the shore with a significant amount of flint eroding out.   A range of finds were recovered, with scrappers, blades and pottery fragments recorded.  Once again the site was described, measured and photographically recorded.

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A swift jet boat ride home left us sufficent time to go to the museum to meet with Sarnia Butcher, the director of the Nornur excavations.  Jacqui was interested in looking at the animal bone from the site.  Originally reported on by Frank Turk,  this remarkable assemblage contains a large amount of seal bone, red deer, shrews, birds and the usual range of domestic species.  When he studied the material species identification and notes on the size, shape and age of animals were sufficient – however a glance through the boxes revealed that significant additional information can be gained from a re-evalutaion of the material.

The Isles of Scilly Wildlife Trust, our hosts, were our next port of call.  Where Ian was interviewed in a cupboard for their radio show!  We also met Bob the new bird counter and chatted about future collaborative work.

We are staying here another night, so we had to unpack our worldly goods for another night in the bunker.  Strange as it sounds we all enjoy staying here and sleep like babies underground as the storms rage across the skies.

Julian, the biologist, has been recruited by Ray Mears to chat about wildlife – and we managed to spot him and his team as we left for our evening. We are still trying to recruit him to our cause……however it was raining and we were hungry, so next time maybe.


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