Using the crushed chalk

We have finished a section of daub on building 547 today.
Using some of the chalk that we had crushed mixed with some chopped straw and water. this was applied to the woven wall under the section of thatched roof that we finished last week. We think that it looks amazing!

The chalk daub on building 547.

The chalk daub on building 547.

We also added extensions to the bottom of the roof of building 851 to create an eave that will allow us to start on the thatching tomorrow. The eave creates a rain shadow to protect the daub from the weather.

The eave fitted to building 851.

The eave fitted to building 851.

We also took down the test structure for building 848. This is now being rebuilt over a marked out floor section with the main poles and ring beam being fitted.

Richard fits the top ring beam to building 848.

Richard fits the top ring beam to building 848.

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Felling a large tree

We have moved up in size with todays task.
Armed with ten volunteers and four flint axes we headed back to the woods to fell a thirty metre high pine tree.Today the volunteers chose the axe that they preferred rather than us insisting on them using a variety, as we felt it would be more productive for them to be comfortable with a particular tool. We felt that it was going to take a while and yesterday we had all estimated how long it would take to fell the tree and we had a range from thirty minutes to three hours.

The tree to be felled

The tree to be felled

It didn’t take long for the chips to start flying as we took turns chopping for two minutes each and by lunch time we had cut a large wedge out of the tree. We continued into the afternoon focusing now on the back cut to ensure that the tree fell where we wanted it, not where it wanted!
The first cut

The first cut

Starting the back cut

Starting the back cut

Ready to fall

Ready to fall

At 2.30pm, after a valiant effort by all involved, the tree started to creak and a few more blows later it fell. Cheers echoed round the wood, we had done it all with flint tools!

11,000 blows later

11,000 blows later

The successful team

The successful team

The total amount of blows struck was 11,477! We counted every one!
We have now reached the end of the harvesting phase and now all the materials will be delivered to Old Sarum for the construction phase to start at the beginning of March.