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Salisbury, United Kingdom

Lymer K.,Wessex Archaeology
Digital Applications in Archaeology and Cultural Heritage | Year: 2015

Contemporary rock art researchers have a wide choice of 3D laser scanners available to them for recording stone surfaces and this is complimented by numerous software packages that are able to process point cloud data. Though ESRI's ArcGIS primarily handles geographical data, it also offers the ability to visualise XYZ data from a stone surface. In this article the potential of ArcGIS for rock art research is explored by focusing on 3D data obtained from two panels of cup and ring marks found at Loups's Hill, County Durham, England. A selection of methods commonly utilised in LiDAR studies, which enhance the identification of landscape features, are also conducted upon the rock panels, including DSM normalisation and raster data Principle Component Analysis (PCA). Collectively, the visualisations produced from these techniques facilitate the identification of the rock art motifs, but there are limitations to these enhancements that are also discussed. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Source

Fyfe R.M.,University of Plymouth | Twiddle C.,University of Aberdeen | Sugita S.,Tallinn University | Gaillard M.-J.,Linnaeus University | And 12 more authors.
Quaternary Science Reviews | Year: 2013

The vegetation of Europe has undergone substantial changes during the course of the Holocene epoch, resulting from range expansion of plants following climate amelioration, competition between taxa and disturbance through anthropogenic activities. Much of the detail of this pattern is understood from decades of pollen analytical work across Europe, and this understanding has been used to address questions relating to vegetation-climate feedback, biogeography and human impact. Recent advances in modelling the relationship between pollen and vegetation now make it possible to transform pollen proportions into estimates of vegetation cover at both regional and local spatial scales, using the Landscape Reconstruction Algorithm (LRA), i.e. the REVEALS (Regional Estimates of VEgetation Abundance from Large Sites) and the LOVE (LOcal VEgetation) models. This paper presents the compilation and analysis of 73 pollen stratigraphies from the British Isles, to assess the application of the LRA and describe the pattern of landscape/woodland openness (i.e. the cover of low herb and bushy vegetation) through the Holocene. The results show that multiple small sites can be used as an effective replacement for a single large site for the reconstruction of regional vegetation cover. The REVEALS vegetation estimates imply that the British Isles had a greater degree of landscape/woodland openness at the regional scale than areas on the European mainland. There is considerable spatial bias in the British Isles dataset towards wetland areas and uplands, which may explain higher estimates of landscape openness compared with Europe. Where multiple estimates of regional vegetation are available from within the same region inter-regional differences are greater than intra-regional differences, supporting the use of the REVEALS model to the estimation of regional vegetation from pollen data. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Last J.,English Heritage | Brown E.J.,Natural England | Bridgland D.R.,Durham University | Harding P.,Wessex Archaeology
Proceedings of the Geologists' Association | Year: 2013

This paper explores the links between the study and conservation of Palaeolithic archaeology and Quaternary geology, using examples from England. In Britain, human occupation is believed to have started approximately 800,000 years ago, thus giving rise to significant overlap between sediments studied by Quaternary geologists and those of interest to Palaeolithic archaeologists. Given the scientific importance of understanding environmental change and its impact on previous populations, along with the cultural significance of studying past human communities, there is an equal need to understand the opportunities and challenges for conservation. There are long-standing legislative, resourcing and methodological differences between geological and archaeological conservation, which we review here, as well as different approaches to site selection and management. There are also differences between the treatment of Palaeolithic and more recent archaeology, which strengthen the need for a closer alliance with Quaternary geoconservation. Ultimately, successful conservation of Palaeolithic archaeology and Quaternary geology should use both heritage protection and geoconservation measures to best advantage, for which mutual understanding is essential. Here, as a contribution to furthering such understanding, we explore the opportunities and challenges for conservation, and set out key areas and priorities for effective collaboration, which is illustrated by a case study from Cannoncourt Farm Pit SSSI (Maidenhead, Berkshire, UK). © 2013 The Geologists' Association. Source

Bicket A.,Wessex Archaeology | Bicket A.,Loughborough University | Tizzard L.,Geoservices
Proceedings of the Geologists' Association | Year: 2015

Significant progress has been made on the investigation of Quaternary submerged prehistory in the British Isles. Mainly through collaboration with industry, a considerable knowledge base has been developed on the distribution and nature of preserved palaeolandscapes of the last 1 million years in UK waters. A diverse array of material has been recovered from the seabed including bone and stone artefacts, extinct fauna, peat deposits, submerged forests and other remnants of relict landscapes from around the British Isles. Archaeological sites are rarer but Palaeolithic and Mesolithic examples are providing critical resources to reinterpret early prehistory in association with Quaternary palaeogeography. © 2015 The Geologists' Association. Source

Dungworth D.,English Heritage Fort Cumberland | Mepham L.,Wessex Archaeology
Historical Metallurgy | Year: 2012

An archaeological excavation at Shooters Hill in south-east London revealed a ditch which contained a substantial quantity of iron smelting slag. The only dating evidence from the fill of the ditch is provided by Early Iron Age pottery. Shooters Hill is one of the earliest known iron production sites in Britain and suggests that this region (the lower Thames valley) may have played a significant role in the introduction of iron manufacture. Source

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