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DOCUMENT NO 220 May 2015

A.P.A.C. Ltd.
Archaeological Perspectives Analysis Consultancy

ARCHAEOLOGICAL WATCHING BRIEF

REPORT

WB/LAN/13

Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

Monmouthshire County Council

Planning Application No’s: DC/2007/01577, DC/2007/01579 & DC/2007/01583

Prepared for:
MR R. L. Davies

By: Dr N. Phillips.
A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Summary

This document comprises a report of an archaeological watching brief undertaken


during ground work at a site identified as having potential archaeological
resources that may be impacted by any development.

The development being proposed was the conversion of two agricultural buildings
to residential use.

A planning application proposal was submitted to Monmouthshire County Council


(MCC) and as part of the planning process, Glamorgan Gwent Archaeological
Trust (GGAT) Archaeological Planning Service (APS), advised the planning
department that the proposed work at the site could likely impact on
archaeological resources.

MCC in accordance with the guidance from GGAT, APS imposed a condition
requiring a program, of archaeological work including a watching brief to be
undertaken during any ground disturbance work on the site.

The report found no evidence of any other archaeologically significant resources


during ground works.

Copyright Notice:
A.P.A.C. Ltd. retains copyright of this report under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act, 1988.

The Ordnance Survey has granted A.P.A.C. Ltd a Copyright Licence (No. 100046577) to reproduce map information; Copyright remains
otherwise with the Ordnance Survey.

Cover Photograph: DSCO5996. Initial ground clearance work

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Contents

Summary .........................................................................................................................................1
Contents...........................................................................................................................................2
Figures:............................................................................................................................................2
Plates: ..............................................................................................................................................3
Appendices ......................................................................................................................................3
Introduction .....................................................................................................................................4
Site Location and Description .........................................................................................................4
Brief archaeological and historical background..............................................................................5
Aims and Objectives .......................................................................................................................5
Watching Brief ................................................................................................................................5
Watching Brief Results ...................................................................................................................6
Interpretation ...................................................................................................................................6
Staff .................................................................................................................................................7
Archive:...........................................................................................................................................7
Acknowledgements: ........................................................................................................................7
Bibliography and References: .........................................................................................................8

Figures:

Fig 01 Site location map.


Fig 02 Site Plan

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Plates:

PL 01 B1. Concrete floor [106] with exposed section of flag [104]


PL 02 Eastern gable of B1. Test pit for foundation. Masonry [101] to 350mm below internal floor [100],
cut [103] into natural red sandy clay [102]
PL 03 Western Gable of B1. Test pit for foundation. Masonry [101] to 100mm below internal floor
[101] cut [103] into natural red sandy clay [102]
PL 04 B1. Section of threshing floor at north west edge: flagstones [104] over rubble [105] over [106]
over [102]
PL 05 B2. Random cobbles [201], sloping north, note scar of former levelled concrete trough along back
wall, gable of B1, [101]
PL 06 B2. Semi circle pattered cobbles [202], along western half of cart shed. Central separation of [201]
– [202] by loose compacted rubble [203]
PL 07 B2. Semi circle pattered cobbles [202], along western half of cart shed. Central separation of [201]
– [202] by loose compacted rubble [203], foreground
PL 08 B2 Cobbles [201] removed to reveal natural [102]
PL 09 B2 Cobbles [201] removed to reveal natural [202]
PL 10 D1. Northern external wall of D2 showing east and west elevations of D1. Floor rubble [301] over
natural [102]
PL 11 D1. Northern external wall of D2 left showing batter angle. Floor rubble [301] over natural [102]
PL 12 D1. Northern external wall of D2 right showing batter angle. Floor rubble [301] over natural [102]
PL 13 Barn complex, external yard, [302]

Appendices

Appendix I Context sheet


Appendix II Digital photograph list & contact sheet

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Introduction

This Watching Brief Report has been prepared by Dr Neil Phillips, A.P.A.C. Ltd, in response to a proposed
programme of works, to convert two agricultural buildings to residential use at Llanfair Farm, Llanishen,
Monmouthshire, NP16 6QU, NGR 346696 204123, fig 01.

As the proposed conversion work will involve changes to the standing fabric of existing buildings as well as
excavation of internal ground floors and trenches for footings and services, there is the potential for such work to
impact on any archaeological resources present.

The client, Mr R. L .Davies; who is acting on approved planning permission with conditions, granted to a previous
owner of the property, Mr M Harris, by Monmouthshire County Council, (MCC); (pl.app.nos DC/2007/00577,
DC/2007/00579 & DC/2007/01583) was advised of the archaeological constraint.

No development shall take place until the applicant or his agents or successors in title has
secured the implementation of a programme of archaeological work in accordance with a
written scheme of investigation which has been submitted to and approved in writing by the
Local Planning Authority.

Reason: To identify and record any features of archaeological interest discovered during
the works, in order to mitigate the impact of the works on the archaeological resource.

MON1606/CNM

At the client’s request, a Written Scheme of Investigation, (WSI); (WSI:BSWB/LAN/13) was prepared and
submitted to Glamorgan Gwent Archaeological Trust, (GGAT), Archaeological Planning Service APS, prior to the
commencement of ground disturbance work.

The WSI was approved as fit for purpose and the resultant watching brief was undertaken on the 2nd January 2014,
during which all immediate ground disturbance likely to impact on any significant archaeological resources was
completed.

Further groundwork was expected and the watching brief put on hold until such work was required.

In April 2015, APAC Ltd was advised that groundwork had been completed.

Site Location and Description

The location of the site is to the north east of the village of Llanishen, Monmouthshire, and can be gained from the
B4293, Chepstow to Monmouth Rd.

Travelling 8 miles north east from Chepstow, along the B4293, is the small village of Llanishen at the centre of
which is a garage and a public house; The Carpenters arms.

Just before the Carpenters Arms take a left turn along Church Rd and descend a long hill to the bottom of the valley,
where there is a 90° corner to the left.

Continue for a few hundred metres and the barns and farm house are on the right.

Geology and Topography

The solid geology at the site is St Maughans, Agrillaceous Rocks and {subequal/Subordinate} sandstone, (BGS
2014).

The barns form a farm complex, nestled in the bottom of a steep valley at around 83.7m OD.

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Brief archaeological and historical background

An archaeological and historical background to the farm complex was presented in the 2014 Building Survey report,
(APAC Ltd BS/LAN/13).

In essence:

the farm complex of which the barns are part is Grade II listed: Llanfair Farmhouse 3120, Barn
and Cowshed 24935 & a further small barn 24936, (MCC. 2007/01583).

The barns probably date to the 17th century with the smaller; originally a cow shed, being converted
some time later into a milking parlour (MON1606/CNM).

The earliest record of the barns is documented on the earliest Ordnance Survey maps which show
some development to the early 19th century configuration.

As a 13th, century document mentions a chapel in the very close vicinity it is possible that there may
also have been a small settlement associated with it, (ibid).
(APAC Ltd BS/LAN/13).

Aims and Objectives

The aim of the watching brief was to preserve by record, within the resources available, any archaeological deposits
uncovered during groundwork.

The watching brief also ensured that: in the event of archaeological resources of significance, being discovered and
requiring treatment beyond the remit of the watching brief, that steps would be implemented to ensure that their
treatment would be undertaken within the standards recommended by the CIFA.

Watching Brief

The active watching brief was undertaken on a single day 2nd January 2014.

The observed excavation was undertaken by hand which began with ground clearance and ground reduction within
buildings B1, B2 and D1, fig 02.

External work to the yard, involving the removal of substantial areas of concrete and ground reduction within
buildings D2, D3, L1, L2 & S1 was not observed.

Initial recording

A record of the features and stratigraphy exposed during excavation was kept including written notes and
photographs.

Measurements were taken regularly using Leica Disto 510, laser measurement device.

No finds were retained due to their modern nature and contamination from disturbed effluent.

Post Ex

Following the watching brief, the field notes and photographs were digitised to produce the context record of the
stratigraphy; Appendix 1, and an annotated list of the photographs, Appendix II.

The two appendices; I Context and II Photographs were cross referenced ready for inclusion in the report.

This report was produced for the client, MCC and GGAT and an archive copy will be deposited at Gwent Records
Office.

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Watching Brief Results

Presentation Notes:
All contexts are denoted [#] in the text, listed in Appendix I, cross referenced in Appendix II, to the plates section.
Photographs used in the text are listed Pl # and a complete list of photographs can be found in appendix II with
contact sheets.

Barn B1, fig 02, a pre existing surface of concrete was removed by agreement, prior to the watching brief work; its
extent can be seen in PL01, on both sides of a linear flagstone, ‘threshing floor’, [104] which runs between the two
barn doors.

Two trial pits were also excavated to examine the depth of the wall foundations and these established the
stratigraphic sequence for the barn floor area as: wall base [101] 300mm and its presumed cut [103] into the natural
surface [102], PL02 & PL03.

The watching brief covered the reduction in floor height across the entire floor of the barn with no significant
archaeological resources revealed.

The linear feature, flagstone floor, consisted of flagstones, [104], over a bed of modern levelled building rubble
[105] including strands of insulated electric cable, pan tiles and whole bricks, PL04, over 100mm of crushed rubble
[106] before natural [102] was reached.

Ground reduction work then moved to barn B2 where a thick layer of compacted manure had been previously
removed to reveal two portions of cobble floor; [201] PL05 and [202] PL06 with a central separation, [203], PL07,
fig 02.

Unlike with the flagstones in B1, both areas of cobbles PL08 & PL09 were found to have been laid onto the natural
[102], with the layer of crushed rubble [203], used to separate both areas and not as bedding material.

The third ground reduction work was undertaken in building D1, PL10, fig 02, where the compacted earth floor was
revealed as a further levelling deposit [301] similar if not identical to [203] & [106].

In the case of D1 however, the depth of deposit [301] was much thicker: 400mm at the southern end, which had
almost completely obscured the batter of the adjoining building D2, PL11 & PL12.

At this point, the ground works were halted for building and renovation work to begin.

Further development of the common yard around which the barns were situated had to be delayed as such work
would hamper access to the site.

Due to the sterile condition of the ground excavated to date, it was agreed that at some point the concrete could be
broken up and removed with the understanding that if any anomalies were revealed during the work then this would
stop until the archaeological watching brief was resumed.

In consequence no further watching brief action was undertaken, as no anomalies were encountered during the on
going work.

Finds

Finds related to building debris and the odd piece of agricultural equipment and fittings.

No finds were retained.

Interpretation

The sterile nature and shallowness of the natural surface provided no evidence of any human interaction beyond
modern re-surfacing work in buildings B1 and D1.

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

The cobbled surfaces in B2 were likely to have been survivals from an earlier period but were probably modified at
the same time as the modern levelling seen elsewhere; by nature of the similarity of the crushed bedding material
[106], [203] & [301].

The likelihood of any archaeological resources being discovered under the yard area was slim to non existent.

The reason being; as can be seen in PL13 and recorded in the building survey, (APAC Ltd BS/LAN/13) the
threshing floor was some 500mm above the yard surface and was accessed by two full length stone steps.

A threshing barn would usually allow through access for carts which would not be possible in this situation.

It is likely therefore, that the ground had been reduced in the area of the yard at a point when the threshing barn
ceased to be used for its original purpose.

It is also probable that any surviving sub surface archaeological resources related to the barns were inadvertently
lost in fairly recent times due to similar requirements of change or practice at the farm.

Staff

Dr. Neil Phillips, ACIFA.

Post ex
Mr A. O. Phillips.

Archive:

The original archive for this project will remain with APAC Ltd.

A copy of the archive will be deposited with Monmouthshire County Archive.

Acknowledgements:

Thanks to Mr Davis for allowing access to his site, and his groundwork’s contractors for their assistance and
efficient handling of the excavations.

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Bibliography and References:

APAC. Ltd. 2013. WSI:BSWB/LAN/13 Written Scheme of Investigation for a Programme of


Archaeological Work. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

APAC. Ltd. 2014. BS/LAN/13. Archaeological Report. Llanfair Farm, Llanishen, Level II
Building Recording Survey.

B.S. Technical Solutions Dukes Farm & Llanfair Farm 21/05/2010

Drawings:
Big Barn
Existing plans and elevations BP2003-03 B
Proposed plans and elevations BP2003-04 D

Milking Parlour
Existing plans and elevations BP2003-05 B
Proposed plans and elevations BP2003-06 C

Location BP2003-07

Chartered Institute of
Archaeologists. Standard and Guidance Archaeological Watching Brief. 2014.

Code of Conduct. 2014.

Standard and Guidance for the creation, compilation, transfer and deposition of
archaeological archives. 2014.

Standard and Guidance for the collection, documentation, conservation and


research of archaeological materials. 2014.

English Heritage Management of Archaeological Projects (1991).

GGAT. MON1606/CNM Conversion of Barn to Dwelling


Milking parlour, Llanfair Farm, Llanishen. DC/2007/01579

MON1604/CNM Conversion of Barn to Dwelling


Big barn, Llanfair Farm, Llanishen. DC/2007/01577

MON1604/CNM Conversion of Barn to Dwelling


Big barn, Llanfair Farm, Llanishen. DC/2007/01583

Monmouthshire County Listed buildings. 2007/01583


Council;

Approval of Planning Permission DC/2007/01579. Llanfair Farm, Milking


Parlour

Structural Appraisal 04/12/2007

The Society of Museum


Archaeologists Towards An Accessible Archive (1995)

United Kingdom Institute


for Conservation.
(Archaeology Section) Guidelines for the Preparation of Excavation Archives for Long-Term
Storage (1990)

Health and Safety at Work Act 1974

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A.P.A.C. Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen WB/LAN/13

Online:

British Geological Survey http://www.bgs.ac.uk/GeoIndex/


Google Earth http://www.google.co.uk/
Magic http://magic.defra.gov.uk/

The copyright for this report shall be retained by A.P.A.C. Ltd.

A.P.A.C. Registered Address: 36 Hatherleigh Rd, Abergavenny Monmouthshire NP7 7RG.


Tel: 07734962919. Mobile: 07734962919 Email: apac.philips@btinternet.com
Company Registration No 5041541 VAT Reg No 826 3628 19
Director: Dr. N. Phillips D.Phil. BA (Hons).Cert Ed/FE. ACIFA.

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Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

The Ordnance Survey has granted A.P.A.C. Ltd a Copyright Licence (No. 100046577)
adapted from: BS Technical Solutions
BP2003-07

(C) Crown Copyright and database rights 2015 Ordnance Survey 100022861

Fig 01: Location


A.P.A.C. Ltd WB/LAN/13
Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

D1

D2 Dairy
DC/2007/05179

D3

L2

203

202 201

B1 L1
B2 104

S1 Barns
DC/0007/05177
DC/2007/01583

Notes:

0 5 10 15 20 Survey Phillips 02/12/2013.


m
processed Phillips 18/06/2014

Fig 02: Ground plan A.P.A.C. Ltd WB/LAN/13


Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

DSC05993
DSC05996
Plate 01: B1. Concrete floor [106] with exposed section of flag [104] Plate 02: Eastern gable of B1. Test pit for foundation. Masonry [101] to
350mm below internal floor [100], cut [103] into natural red sandy clay
[102]

DSC06007
DSC05994

Plate 03: Western Gable of B1. Test pit for foundation. Masonry [101] Plate 04: B1. Section of threshing floor at
A.P.A.C. Ltd WB/LAN/13
to 100mm below internal floor [101] cut [103] into natural red sandy north west edge: flagstones [104] over
clay [102] rubble [105] over [106] over [102]
Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

DSC06009
DSC06008
Plate 05. B2. Random cobbles [201], sloping north, note scar of former levelled Plate 06: B2. Semi circle pattered cobbles [202], along western half of
concrete trough along back wall, gable of B1, [101] cart shed. Central separation of [201] – [202] by loose compacted rubble
[203]

DSC06117
DSC06010

Plate 07: B2. Semi circle pattered cobbles [202], along western half of Plate 08: B1. B2 Cobbles [201] removed to
A.P.A.C. Ltd WB/LAN/13
cart shed. Central separation of [201] – [202] by loose compacted reveal natural [102]
rubble [203], foreground
Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

DSC06011
DSC06018
Plate 09. B2 Cobbles [201] removed to reveal natural [202] Plate 10: D1. Northern external wall of D2 showing east and west
elevations of D1. Floor rubble [301] over natural [102]

DSC06013
DSC06012

Plate 11: D1. Northern external wall of D2 left showing batter angle. Plate 12: D1. Northern external wall of D2
A.P.A.C. Ltd WB/LAN/13
Floor rubble [301] over natural [102] right showing batter angle. Floor rubble
[301] over natural [102]
Big Barn & Milking Parlour, Llanishen

DSC06115
Plate 13: Barn complex, external yard, [302] A.P.A.C. Ltd WB/LAN/13
A.P.A.C. Ltd. Appendix I Context Sheet Index

Site: 27 Kingsmark, Grid Ref: Site No: Alternate No:


Chepstow 352520 194156 WB/CM/14
CONTEXT AREA FEATURE DESCRIPTION FINDS PHOTOGRAPHS
100 B1, B2 Deposit Surface rubbish, agricultural, and building DSC05993, DSC05994,
materials DSC05996.
101 B1, B2 Wall Masonry walls of building DSC05993, DSC05994,
DSC05996, DSC06004,
DSC06006, DSC06019,
102 B1, B2 Natural Red brown sandy clay DSC05993, DSC05994,
DSC06004, DSC06005,
DSC06006, DSC06007,
DSC06011, DSC06012,
DSC06013, DSC06015,
DSC06019,
103 B1, B2 Cut Cut for walls [101]
104 B1 Floor Squared, random laid, sandstone flag, DSC05995, DSC05996,
threshing floor. DSC06005, DSC06007,
105 B1 Bedding layer Compacted building materials including DSC05995, DSC05996,
sections of plastic coated electric cable DSC06005, DSC06007,
DSC06020, DSC06021,
DSC06022,
106 B1, B2 Compacted Crushed rubble and dark brown soil DSC06004, DSC06005,
DSC06006, DSC06007,
DSC06019, DSC06020,
DSC06021, DSC06022,
201 B2, Floor Random cobbles DSC06007, DSC06008,
DSC06015,
202 B2, Floor Cobbles, semi-circular pattern DSC06089, DSC06010,
203 B2, Floor Crushed rubble and dark brown soil DSC06008, DSC06010,
301 D1, Floor Crushed rubble and dark brown soil DSC060011, DSC06012,
DSC06013, DSC06014,
DSC06015,
302 Yard Floor Concrete DSC06014, DSC06015,
A.P.A.C. Ltd Appendix II Digital photograph list WB/CW/14

Photo no Date Camera Size View Description Plate


DSC05993 1/12/2013 DSC F828 3264x2448 V Eastern gable of B1. Test pit for foundation. Masonry [101] to 350mm below internal floor [100], cut [103] into natural red sandy clay [102] PL02
DSC05994 1/12/2013 DSC F828 3264x2448 V Western Gable of B1. Test pit for foundation. Masonry [101] to 100mm below internal floor [101] cut [103] into natural red sandy clay [102] PL03
DSC05995 1/12/2013 DSC F828 3264x2448 V B1. North western edge of central threshing floor, Squared flagstone [104] over compacted rubble [105] over natural red sandy clay [102].
DSC05996 1/12/2013 DSC F828 3264x2448 W B1. Concrete floor [106] with exposed section of flag [104] PL01
DSC06004 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 W B1. West of the compacted rubble [105] a levelling layer of rubble and stone [106] towards NW corner. Natural [102]
DSC06005 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 E B1. From north-western corner. Remains of Flag floor [104] over [105] over [106] over [102]
DSC06006 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 W B1. South western corner with floor reduced by 400mm. [101] over [106] over [102]
DSC06007 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 E B1. Section of threshing floor at north west edge: flagstones [104] over rubble [105] over [106] over [102] PL04
DSC06008 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 S B2. Random cobbles [201], sloping north, note scar of former levelled concrete trough along back wall, gable of B1, [101] PL05
DSC06009 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 S B2. Semi circle pattered cobbles [202], along western half of cart shed. Central separation of [201] – [202] by loose compacted rubble [203] PL06
DSC06010 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 W B2. Semi circle pattered cobbles [202], along western half of cart shed. Central separation of [201] – [202] by loose compacted rubble [203], foreground PL07
DSC06111 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 S D1. Northern external wall of D2 showing east and west elevations of D1. Floor rubble [301] over natural [102] PL10
DSC06112 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 W D1. Northern external wall of D2 left showing batter angle. Floor rubble [301] over natural [102] PL11
DSC06113 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 E D1. Northern external wall of D2 right showing batter angle. Floor rubble [301] over natural [102] PL12
DSC06014 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 E D1. External concrete yard [302], relative to internal natural
DSC06115 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 S Barn complex, external yard, [302] PL13
DSC06117 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 N B2 Cobbles [201] removed to reveal natural [102] PL08
DSC06018 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 S B2 Cobbles [201] removed to reveal natural [202] PL09
DSC06119 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 NW B1. North west corner rubble [105] over [102]
DSC06120 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 N B1. section through former threshing floor. Rubble [105] including brick and tile over [106] over natural [102]
DSC06121 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 E B1. last stretch of threshing floor being removed
DSC06122 02/01/2014 DSC F828 3264x2448 E B1. last stretch of threshing floor being removed