Bag labelling blues

Having spent the day under the orders of Hollie, the finds hut supremo, otherwise known as Hollie the all-powerful and she-who-must-be-obeyed, I now have a new respect for the tireless work of the excavation finds supervisor. As a digger you're used to having an endless supply of those little plastic-bags-with-tags to put your small finds in ...


... but you never stop to think about how they get in the site box, you just chuck your bit of pot in, write the date & context number on the bag & stick the little plastic tag in the ground with the nail for the EDM team to come & 3-D locate for you - simples!

Someone however has enter all those numbers in the small finds record, write out all those bags & tags and put them all together, which when you've got 2,000 to prepare is not a quick task.

First off you need to recycle all those plastic seed tray labels by carefully using a marker pen to cross out all the previous numbers - some of those labels have been with us for years:


Why not buy new? I hear you cry - well because a hundred labels cost a fiver, & we're not made of money - why spend £100 when a bit of judicious marker penning does the trick.

We do buy the plastic bags new though - you have to as they stay with the small find throughout its archaeological progress through post-excavation work and beyond.

We were running a production line and doing pretty well - got up to a 1,000 today so we're half way there


Mind you I was getting to the point that if I had to write SWR19 (our site code) on another bag I was going to go quietly mad, so tomorrow the task for Advance Team Swandro (should that be the A Team?) is to finish off our path through the bog and then rake all the grass from the strimming up so it doesn't interfere with the highly sensitive laser scanning equipment. We have a nice pond on the way to site which had a couple of moorhens paddling about on it, but when I snuck up on them to take a photo they legged it, so here's the scenic pond on it's own & I'm off to try & uncramp my hands - not used to handwriting anymore!



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Swandro - Orkney Coastal Archaeology Trust 

Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation No: SC047002 

Patron: His Royal Highness The Prince Charles, the Duke of Rothesay

Registered office: Bayview Birsay Orkney KW17 2LR   email: info@swandro.co.uk