Back in June, we were excited to see the reports coming out of Monmouth about a potentially unique Bronze Age site built from 3 massive tree trunks chopped in half and laid next to each other. Stories about this discovery were all over the net, see here, here and here for example.
All of which makes the descent into another CADW farce all the more disappointing. Despite carbon dates and well respected archaeologists from Monmouth Archaeology dating the site back to the early bronze age, CADW are refusing to schedule the site as “its date and function remains uncertain, and its full extent unclear.”
In a written reply to queries by the Monmouth AM Nick Ramsey, Welsh Heritage Minister Huw Lewis has suggested that the interpretation by the excavating archaeologists could be completely wrong and the site may instead “represent part of a later Roman system of drainage ditches”.
The discovery was made during excavations in advance of a new housing development, and scheduling would clearly scupper at least some of those plans. Not scheduling however will presumably allow the development to continue once the excavations are complete.
We shouldn’t worry about preservation of the site though, as “Parts of the trench system will anyway remain preserved below an adjacent planned green space within the development.” Phew!! And here was us thinking it would just be built over.