Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Mesolithic Activity at Trwyn Du

I was out walking near Aberffraw and following the course of the river to the sea, which emerges onto a beautiful beach which I am told is the favourite beach of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Those of us with an eye for archaeology (like the Duke's father) would be drawn to the headland to the north side of the beach - Trwyn Du (in English "Black Nose" or "Black Headland")

The river Fraw winds its way beautifully into the sea and is popular with all manner of wading birds.

Newborough Warren lies to the south of the river Fraw

I had a beautiful view of Bwlch Mawr, Rhyd Du and the Yr Eifl Hills.

I saw Snowdon in the distance, but immediately in front of me was a bronze age burial cairn - some 4000 years old. But I was interested to read later that this was extensively excavated in 1974 when it seemed threatened by coastal erosion. Underneath this bronze age burial mound was a mesolithic occupation deposit dating back 8000 to 9000 years ago. Those living at the site during this time would have been living in a river valley some 7km from the sea. 5000 pieces of flint, points and scrapers and stone axes were discovered. It was clearly a flint napper factory, a place making tools 3000 years before agriculture came to the area.

This is what the dig looked like in 1974.

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