Dowsing Archaeological Features;
An empirical study at Cressing Temple, Witham, Essex.

20. Comparative study.

21. Introduction.

The following study compares the plots made by Colin Peal over a period of several years to the excavations and remote sensing surveys made on the site. The study is limited to the Scheduled Area although Colin has dowsed several of the surrounding fields. This limitation is to confine the comparisons to physical rather than conjectural evidence.

It is important to bear in mind that Colin's work all came before the excavations and the remote sensing survey by which time he was concentrating on the fields around Cressing Temple. It was not therefore possible for him to have prior knowledge of any of the features other than those which can be seen in plain sight. Where this is so it has been stated in the text and they were often used as the starting points with which to trace the features themselves. This, of course, is common sense.

22. Specific comparisons.

Dowsing plot overlay.
29. Site plan overlay with the dowsing plot produced by Colin Peal and main features of all the excavations. This plan incorporates several seasons dowsing which results in different alignments and some seasonal drift. The archaeological features are shown in red. Click for a larger image.

By examining the site dowsing plot drawn onto an highly detailed 1:500 base map annotated by the County Architects Department and also on that produced in 1994 by the author (Figure. 29) and superimposing the excavations the first observations can be made. It will be noted that the overlays are not perfect. They were made over a period of 11 years beginning with the architects plan in 1988 and ending with those produced for this report. Copying by hand and machine from one plan to another inevitably produces transcription errors. The plans were scanned into Adobe Photoshop 5.0.2, colour treated for clarity and overlaid. Rather than mask or fudge these errors the author has elected to maintain them as from the originals. They will be seen to be slight.

22 - 1.0 The chapel, tower and cellar excavations.

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Barry Hillman-Crouch. MSt PA, Dip FA, BSc, HND. Written 1999 Published on the web June 2005.