A few weeks ago I was delighted to be interviewed for Archaeology Magazine- all the way over in America!
Here is an extract and a link to the finished article, featuring my research and my colleagues’ research projects plus the Hillfort Glow experiment I organised whilst working for Denbighshire County Council’s Heritage Lottery Funded ‘Heather and Hillforts’ Landscape Partnership Scheme, in the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).
Hillforts of the Iron Age: Searching for evidence of cultural changes that swept the prehistoric British Isles
In late summer, the heather on the bleak, windswept moorlands of the Clwydian Range blooms deep purple. A series of hills and mountains in northeast Wales, not far from the English border, the Clwydians are today a popular destination for hikers who share trails with flocks of grazing sheep.
Those making the arduous scramble to one of the summits are rewarded with views that take in much of Wales and northern England, including the craggy mountains of Snowdonia to the west and the distant peaks of the Lake District to the north.
Below the range, the Vale of Clwyd (pronounced KLOO-id) stretches out like a green and yellow patchwork quilt, the boundaries of farmland marked by tidy lines of trees. This bucolic landscape belies the fact that dramatic events played out here some 2,800 years ago.
Around that time, people were transitioning from the Bronze Age to the Iron Age and, under circumstances that are still not entirely clear, built a series of enormous enclosures called hillforts, whose origins and ultimate purposes are, for now, lost to time.
Archaeologists are currently excavating at hillforts in the Clwydian Range to understand both their construction and the conditions that convinced people to come together and pool their labor to erect these monumental feats of prehistoric civil engineering.