The project involved the excavation of a rectangular structure in Upper Pasture near Selside in Ribblesdale. To read a short report by David Johnson to be published in the next edition of the Anglo Saxon periodical Withowinde click here.
Following the completion of Phase II and the backfilling of the trench two samples of charcoal recovered from a sealed context within the floor of the building were sent away for AMS dating.
Both samples have the same calibrated date at 95.4% probability with only five years separating the BP dates. The cal. dates are 660-780AD which puts the sites abandonment in the early Anglo-Saxon period.
If the actual date was to be close to 660AD then this is an exceptionally early date for the Dales. If on the other hand the actual date was to be closer to 780AD then it is still highly significant.
This is the only site in Ribblesdale to have been firmly dated by AMS - the only other site dated by archaeological investigation was the Gauber Viking-style settlement which was dated by three Northumbrian coins from the mid 9th century - much later than the building in Upper Pasture.
This result now need supporting by investigation of other sites in the area most of which have been assumed to be Romano-British.
Due to a third charcoal sample being recently submitted for carbon dating it is unlikely that a full report will now be published before the end of March 2012