In 2017, a group of Marlburians, led by Tony Roberts of Archeoscan, attempted without success to uncover the footings of the walls of the medieval castle which records show existed in the area now known as ‘The Wilderness’. Undaunted, a new team of pupil archaeological enthusiasts began work under the same expert supervision further south of the Leaf Block in September 2018.
By early December, promising signs of medieval masonry – large sarsen boulders mortared together in distinctively man-made forms – began to emerge from the ground. Digging recommenced after Christmas to reveal fully the structures pictured here in mid-February 2019. With the help of Wiltshire County Archaeologist, Melanie Pomeroy-Kellinger, the plan now is to secure accurate dating of samples of mortar to confirm our assumptions about the remains. The hope is also to make some small finds in context which might allow accurate dating.
In consultation with recognised experts, such as Dr. Hugh Willmott (SU 1985-90) – Senior Lecturer in European Historical Archaeology at the University of Sheffield – the team hopes that conservation measures to stabilise the structures will then allow the wall to remain open and ‘on view’ for futures generations of Marlburians to ponder.