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Risehill, Cumbria

Risehill, Cumbria

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Published by Wessex Archaeology
In July 2008 an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of Risehill, Raygill Farm, Cumbria (NGR 376676 489354). An evaluation comprising eight trenches sought to locate and characterise the navvy settlement and activity associated with the construction of the airshafts for the Risehill Tunnel, part of the Settle to Carlisle line. The evaluation highlighted the generally good preservation of the Site, although many of the buildings appear to have been of timber with only rough stone foundations. Specialisation and division of different parts of the Site between settlement and working areas was seen.
Trenches 1 and 5 were positioned to locate what appears to have been a residential hut. The bedding for a tramway that ran down the hillside to Raygill was seen in Trench 2. The excavation also uncovered a structure in Trench 3 that may have been the engine or boiler house. Trench 4 was situated on the southern edge of the square reservoir still visible as an earthwork just to the north of the trench.
Excavation of this trench also revealed the presence of a leat running parallel to the edge of the reservoir, suggesting that there was probably a network of water channels to direct water to the boilers, in order to create the steam needed to power the engines. Trenches 6 and 7 appeared to relate to the workshops noted at the Site, and possibly located the site of the blacksmith’s shop.
The evaluation results are of at least local significance, adding further depth to our understanding of the construction of the Settle to Carlisle railway line. A short summary of the results will be offered to the Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society for inclusion in the annual round-up of archaeology in the county.
In July 2008 an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of Risehill, Raygill Farm, Cumbria (NGR 376676 489354). An evaluation comprising eight trenches sought to locate and characterise the navvy settlement and activity associated with the construction of the airshafts for the Risehill Tunnel, part of the Settle to Carlisle line. The evaluation highlighted the generally good preservation of the Site, although many of the buildings appear to have been of timber with only rough stone foundations. Specialisation and division of different parts of the Site between settlement and working areas was seen.
Trenches 1 and 5 were positioned to locate what appears to have been a residential hut. The bedding for a tramway that ran down the hillside to Raygill was seen in Trench 2. The excavation also uncovered a structure in Trench 3 that may have been the engine or boiler house. Trench 4 was situated on the southern edge of the square reservoir still visible as an earthwork just to the north of the trench.
Excavation of this trench also revealed the presence of a leat running parallel to the edge of the reservoir, suggesting that there was probably a network of water channels to direct water to the boilers, in order to create the steam needed to power the engines. Trenches 6 and 7 appeared to relate to the workshops noted at the Site, and possibly located the site of the blacksmith’s shop.
The evaluation results are of at least local significance, adding further depth to our understanding of the construction of the Settle to Carlisle railway line. A short summary of the results will be offered to the Transactions of the Cumberland and Westmorland Antiquarian and Archaeological Society for inclusion in the annual round-up of archaeology in the county.

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Wessex Archaeology on Apr 27, 2009
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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Wessex Archaeology 
December 2008 Ref: 68737 
RisehillTunnel Navvy CampCumbria
 Archaeological Evaluation and Assessment of Results
 
Risehill Tunnel Navvy Camp, Cumbria
Archaeological Evaluation and Assessment of Results
Prepared on behalf of:
Videotext Communications Ltd49 Goldhawk RoadLONDONSW1 8QP
By
Wessex ArchaeologyPortway HouseOld Sarum ParkSALISBURYWiltshireSP4 6EB
Report reference: 68737.01
December 2008
© Wessex Archaeology Limited 2008, all rights reserved Wessex Archaeology Limited is a Registered Charity No. 287786 
 
i
Risehill Tunnel Navvy Camp, Cumbria
Archaeological Evaluation and Assessment of Results
Contents
Summary Acknowledgements
1BACKGROUND...................................................................................................11.1Introduction...............................................................................................11.2Site Location, Topography and Geology................................................11.3Archaeological Background....................................................................1
Prehistoric to medieval...............................................................................1Post-medieval.............................................................................................2 
1.4Previous Archaeological Work................................................................32AIMS AND OBJECTIVES...................................................................................33METHODS...........................................................................................................33.1Geophysical Survey.................................................................................33.2LIDAR survey............................................................................................33.3Evaluation Trenches................................................................................34RESULTS............................................................................................................44.1Introduction...............................................................................................44.2Geophysical Survey.................................................................................44.3Evaluation Trenches................................................................................5
Introduction ( 
Figures 1 & 3
 ).......................................................................5 Trench 1 ( 
Figure 4
 )....................................................................................5 Trench 2 ( 
Figure 5 
 )....................................................................................6 Trench 3 ( 
Figure 6 
 )....................................................................................7 Trench 4 ( 
Figure 7 
 )....................................................................................7 Trench 6 ( 
Figure 9
 )....................................................................................8 Trench 7 ( 
Figure 9
 )....................................................................................9Trench 8 ( 
Figure 10 
 )..................................................................................9
5FINDS................................................................................................................105.1Introduction.............................................................................................105.2Structural Material..................................................................................105.3Domestic Equipment..............................................................................105.4Personal Items........................................................................................115.5Miscellaneous Finds..............................................................................115.6Conclusions............................................................................................116PALAEO-ENVIRONMENTAL EVIDENCE........................................................127DISCUSSION.....................................................................................................127.1Introduction.............................................................................................127.2Working Conditions...............................................................................137.3The Buildings..........................................................................................147.4The Workforce........................................................................................167.5Living conditions....................................................................................168RECOMMENDATIONS.....................................................................................189ARCHIVE...........................................................................................................1910REFERENCES..................................................................................................20Appendix 1: Trench Summaries

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