Busy Bexley YAC
What a lovely day for flint knapping! We had a fantastic session in May 2016 thanks to flint knapper and expert prehistorian James Dilley. James used to be a YAC member! He's now studying for a PhD, and runs Ancient Craft a re-enactment company specialising in demonstrating prehistoric technology.
Knapping and noisy fun!
We started with a talk from James as he took us through a timeline of flint tools and their uses. He also had some bronze tools he had made and he talked to us about the transition from flint to metal.
James demonstrated how to knap, then we then had a go ourselves! We had some really good flint knappers, and everyone had something to take home.
After our flint knapping, James showed us how a bullroarer works. It's basically a piece of wood attached to a string, whirled round to produce a roaring noise! They were used to communicate over long distances and as musical instruments. The oldest bullroarers date to the Paleolithic period; one has even been found in Ukraine dating from 17,000 BC! It was interesting to know that bullroarers are still used in Australia by Aboriginal tribal groups.
Back in the trenches
Bexley YAC is run by Bexley Archaeological Group. We are really lucky to have access to an ongoing excavation, where our members can learn archaeological techniques and regularly get their hands dirty digging!
As well as flint knapping with James, for our May meeting we also got back in the trenches.We had to sweep the trenches of leaves before we could start as this was the first day of proper digging. The group by the fence had plenty of finds, but the other trenches were quite dry and difficult to dig.
Blog by Fran Hills, Bexley YAC Leader
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