Dowsing Archaeological Features;
An empirical study at Cressing Temple, Witham, Essex.
22. Comparative studies.
6.0 Beneath the visitors centre, south-east corner of the site. CT30.
6.1. Colin followed two large parallel anomalies into the area beside the Stock Barn where they faded out. Neither of these appeared in the excavation CT30. Given their form it is most likely part of the glacial deposit that he has traced.
40. Resistivity shows a large area of disturbance beneath the footprint of the Visitors Centre. This turned out to be gasworks brieze brought in to level the pigyards in the 1980's. Other areas are caused by field lime deposits.
Where the readings fade is an area of thickly deposited gasworks brieze (Figure. 40) that would serve to mask any but the strongest magnetic anomaly and this is clearly depicted in the remote sensing surveys.
6.2. The lenticular feature further to the south corresponds closely with the position for another Tudor brick culvert and a building footing that is associated with it. The difficulty with this area is that there is a large ditch, back-filled in the 1970's which runs from the south corner of the moat to the road. It is back-filled with soil, metal waste, lime and brick rubble, (CT30) and any attempt to dowse across it results in confusion.
6.3. Colin plotted the line, albeit not too accurately, of the mediaeval ditch running through the Stock Barn and appears to have combined the reading with the Tudor drain and footing that runs parallel to it, probably giving a stronger reading.
6.4. The area to the south which is shown plotted with rectilinear structures was modernly used as the stackyard for bricks and lime. It is possible that Colin has plotted remnants of these or that there are other structures here. CT30 showed only tractors tyre prints and lime dumps on top of the mediaeval ditch.
Barry Hillman-Crouch. MSt PA, Dip FA, BSc, HND. Written 1999 Published on the web June 2005.