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Tithe Barn Church Lane (South) Sydling St Nicolas Dorset DT2 9PA Scheduled Monument No. SM DO 105; HA 1003209

Sykes, Dan Tithe Barn Church Lane (South) Sydling St Nicolas Dorset DT2 9PA Scheduled Monument No. SM DO 105; HA 1003209. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

In advance of a programme of restoration, Oxford Archaeology was instructed by Beauchamps Chartered Surveyors of Dorchester, Dorset to undertake an archaeological evaluation at the Tithe Barn, Sydling St Nicholas, Dorset. The barn is Grade II* Listed Building and a Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM) No. SM DO 105; HA 1003209.. The works comprised the hand excavation of six small but targeted test pits within the footprint of the barn and took place between 9th and 12th January 2012. The test pits revealed evidence in the form of foundations, post and stake holes, possible beam slots, possible post pads and stone flooring for the development and use of the barn since its postulated construction date in the 15th century up to its remodelling in the c. 19th century, although only Test Pit 6 yielded any dating evidence and that was confined to the 19th century. The north, west and south barn walls, probably dating to the 15th century were found to be supported upon foundations set into the chalk bedrock. The eastern barn wall, constructed when the barn was shortened in the c. 19th century, and the extant aisle stone post-pads sat immediately upon the natural geology with an absence of any foundations. Post holes and stake holes in Test Pits 4 and 5 indicate that evidence survives for a number of now non-existent timber structures within the barn. A number of these could relate to construction or repair episodes possibly holding either scaffolding or setting out stakes. Equally they may indicate evidence for the use of the structure relating to internal division of the barn into different areas. A possible post pad pit, located at the eastern end of the barn in Test Pit 3 may be related to the original form of the barn. A north-south aligned linear feature at the western edge of the barn (Test Pit 1) had an unclear relationship with the adjacent wall and possibly pre-dated it and therefore the construction of the C15th barn, although this feature is possibly simply a drainage channel within the barn. A north - south feature in Test Pit 6 aligned with the eastern edge of the western entrances and contained a small east-west aligned brick structure. It dated to the 19th century and probably had a drainage function. The feature contained significant amounts of dressed flint nodules which probably derived from the demolished original eastern end to the barn, and could therefore be contemporary with the remodelling of the eastern end. Intact floor surfaces were found in three of the six test pits. The surfaces fell into two categories: flint and limestone cobbling in Test Pits 2 and 6 and a mixture of limestone flagstones and flint cobbles in Test Pit 4. The flint surface in Test Pit 6 sealed the 19th century drain and is therefore probably of a similar date, this suggests a similar date for the surface in Test Pit 2. The limestone flags were heavily worn and may represent the oldest surfacing in the barn. Whether the different stone surfaces, or absence of stone surface reflects different use areas, or simply resurfacing and reuse could not be fully ascertained. A dump of modern building rubble formed a very rough surface between the opposing eastern entrances.

Item Type:Client Report
Subjects:Geographical Areas > English Counties > Dorset
Period > UK Periods > Medieval 1066 - 1540 AD
Period > UK Periods > Modern 1901 - present
Period > UK Periods > Post Medieval 1540 - 1901 AD
ID Code:1894
Deposited By: Scott
Deposited On:04 Sep 2014 10:54
Last Modified:04 Sep 2014 10:54

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