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Trench Talk

An account by Sue Quick


We brought the bags to tote the tools, The trowels, the togs, for rain and bogs.

We had tool talks for spades (not forks), For mattocks, shovels – all the works.

Then took the turf, cut clean and neat, and shook the shards upon our feet, With finds wrote bags with number nodes, wrote bags with context, trench and codes, and then ’twas time (for time is fleet) for tea, the windy hill to climb -good neet!

The schools they came with eager smiles To learn the ropes, to fill the files, With photos, questions, and they said It was the best time ever had.

The students were not all the same, Some loved the rain, some felt the pain, Of blisters, buckets, sun and rain, But everybody made some gain.

The volunteers they they came and went, They talked, they toiled, felt quite bent, When slaving up and down the hill, Hither and thither wherever sent.

All helped to wash, to dry, to record All the finds. To plan the sections All the trenches, tape and measure. Even de-turf new extensions.

Whilst archaeologists galore, Dug ditches, cellars and all in store, The lads and lasses danced a dance, Pulled pints and called a bluff once more,

They joked they jaked, took doctor’s potions, Scribed a script, and more diversions, Still they managed to meet their aims, Whilst playing the Under Whitle games.

So generations of budding diggers, Found treasures under soil and cellars, They laughed they cried and played with figures, They wrote the blogs and learnt the rigours.

And here my tale must take a rest, To sample grapes, recoup from pests, When horse flies die and boots are drying, Me thinks our digging was the best!

The soil has found its trench again, so worthy folk remake their minds, Where Horobins and other kind, once hid their secrets for us to find.

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