potential early bottle tip

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Kenleyboy
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It has been quite sometime since I was last out bottle digging and one such tip was waiting patiently on the side lines for my attention but with the lockdown in place it was not possible until today . The excursion though was more of a test dig to get a feel of the place , no heavy duty work and more of a recce than a serious dig . It was also an interesting one date wise with the original building dating back to the early 1600s so there was a possible chance of stumbling across some very early hand blown glass bottles . Visions of onion bottles , wines and porters with tooled lips , hand blown with crude open pontils to the base played havoc with my imagination , what a dream find any of those would be , broken or intact . The fact of stumbling across early hand made glass especially from the Georgian period had grabbed my attention for many months leading up to this mornings early visit . Today though was a case of make haste slowly , there was potentially plenty to go at and the old cottage was sat in a generous acre of land with a good few hundred years of human activity so there had to be something .
The building itself was originally an old forge then gradually as time moved on it was then part dwelling and Smithy until finally when the blacksmiths days were over if was given over to full cottage accommodation . It lay empty for many years and the present owner has a huge task ahead re building and restoring this ancient Norfolk building and making it habitable once again .

The lane leading down was just wide enough to squeeze my car through until it finally turned in to a rutted muddy track . I could see the welcoming sight of a weathered tiled roof poking amongst the forest of bare branches from a small wood which enclosed this tiny dwelling , in high summer and full growth you would have been excused for driving right past . The building lays in a scoop with a high back wall bracing the perimeter of a farm field which lay behind and it was behind this wobbly old wall I intended to investigate as it proved to show some very promising clues . The top of the wall was level with the farm field and the land afforded a generous strip of diggable ground about two metres wide by 40 metres long . The boundary farm fence prevented venturing further out but this also had the typical hallmarks of an old tip as another few metres of raised ground going along the length of the wall was festooned with budding stinging nettles as well as a smattering of broken glass shards and bits of victorian crockery , some sure signs of an old tip . The home owner hinted that this over the fence strip of land may well have belonged to this property at one time and was "borrowed " by the farmer many years ago when the plot lay empty , the wobbly and some what hastily looking fence line certainly looked that way and the fact that the tip area was a continuation of higher land before dropping down to cropped land looked all, very suspicious :lol: For now it is out of bounds but never say never .

A cup of tea and a chat and then I was left to poke about at my leisure and I was glad that the soil was soft , it would make my life easier for my first proper but short dig , good to ease myself back into gently . The idea to dig here first is down to knowing that behind walls , especially domestic is a good place to chuck your household rubbish over , out of sight and out of mind and I also at this stage wanted to see if any bottles were down there and what age .With that information I could then gauge whether is was worth pursuing in that area or try elsewhere .
The first layer was devoid of anything but this soon changed when I hit lumps of coal and bits of rusted iron , it was looking a bit tippy toi me and soon the first bottle that came out was a small perfume . It was about 1940s period , a little late for me but showed potential that there was after all bottles behind the wall . This was all the information I needed to carry on until I reached the bottom which would be about chest deep . Soft soil and ever more bottles coming up was proving to be a good indication of rubbish dumping even more so when some earlier bottles started to show although many were broken . My spade tip touch a solid but hollow obstruction and with gloved hand I sifted through the powdery mud until fingers touched a potential good find . It was round in shape but I soon found out that it was a cast iron down pipe which took some heaving to remove , you can see the offending item in the foreground .
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After that unexpected bit of weightlifting it was time for a cuppa and a rest up for ten minutes . The weather was quite warm for mid morning and with spring now upon us I could see a pair of Buzzards behind me dogfighting above the farm field , play acting and letting out those long high and low tone screeches , it is a wonderful unmistakable sound that grabs my attention every time I hear it .
Cup of tea done and back to the pit to continue with the task in hand and as I expected there were plenty of bottles , rusted buckets and saucepans all ancient vessels mixed in with a healthy number of horseshoes , being an old smithy I knew it would be too long before I found some .

Seeing as I wasnt staying too long I decided that once I had it bottom I would trench a few feet along the wall boundary and then call it a day , it was very promising despite the late period bottles however I finally got to find what I was looking for and I was just glad to know that what I had thought could be in here actually was and would also tie in with the period of the building . Not a full bottle sadly but it didnt matter , it was enough to evoke enough interest and also confirm my thoughts that there was very early glass in here somewhere and this was enough proof to satisfy me .
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The neck of a very early hand blown bottle . Not an onion , most likely a very early wine or stubby porter bottle . The glass looks black but is in fact very dark green , wafer thin and very crude with tooled lip . I was very pleased to finally have found something like this and the chances of finding a whole one would be slim as most are generally broken but its the hope that spurs you on . At a guess mid Georgian early Victorian but I need to investigate this further . Through age the glass has turned and has a rich array of deep purple and blue colours and the fact this has been hand blown with ancient tooling hundreds of years ago fascinates me enough to delve further . It will be a long haul and it is a lottery to which patch you hit , that could happen next visit or ten visits down the line but somewhere in there will be some gems that are worth the toil and struggle to find them .
Not a great deal at all today but it isnt always about coming back with a boot full of bottles , just the hunt is enough to feed the curiosity and hunger . Couple of later bottles but much later but worth bringing home for the bulk box , meanwhile my shard will take pride of place in my cabinet and a token reminder that there is some potential out there , you just got to pick the right spot , as in metal detecting , you got to walk over it to find it , much of the same old thing .
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alloverover
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Interesting post KB, I must admit it took me a while to decide to read it, the amount of words scared me off but ive always enjoyed your posts.
You cant always expect to get straight into the good stuff no matter what your after, ive spent many a visit to sites detecting when I am sure theres stuff there but it just dosent show itself withought a lot of hard graft.

good on you mate, I wish you all the luck in the world and keep writing these posts, thoroughly enjoyable to read :thumbsup:
Blackadder43
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I've been looking forward to this write up :thumbsup: and it didnt fail either
Always makes me feel like i'm there on site.....supervising of course :lol:

Sounds like we are onto a winner too with the few bits of early glass turning up :clapping:
If you get a plethora of early ish horseshoes then i'll pay the postage and have a few if you dont want them
I'll throw some jelly beans the owners way to buy a bag of sand or summat
My missus has a thing for lucky horseshoes, and we already have a fair few dotted around the back, the conservatory, under the stairs :lol:

Cheers for that fella
When have you planned the next visit?
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Bors
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Open your can of Spinach Paul and grab your Fork . There`s a diggin to be performed. :thumbsup:
Things aint cooking in my kitchen
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Easylife
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A good interesting write up Paul, following the trail of clues to the jackpot. :thumbsup:
D2 - 13"x11" coil - audio only.
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Kenleyboy
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Blackadder43 wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 11:27 pm I've been looking forward to this write up :thumbsup: and it didnt fail either
Always makes me feel like i'm there on site.....supervising of course :lol:

Sounds like we are onto a winner too with the few bits of early glass turning up :clapping:
If you get a plethora of early ish horseshoes then i'll pay the postage and have a few if you dont want them
I'll throw some jelly beans the owners way to buy a bag of sand or summat
My missus has a thing for lucky horseshoes, and we already have a fair few dotted around the back, the conservatory, under the stairs :lol:

Cheers for that fella
When have you planned the next visit?
If I had known about the horseshoes I would have saved them . Must have had about twenty odd which went straight back in the hole and is now full and raked over :thumbdown: No worries though , next visit I will put them aside for you :thumbsup:
This one will be a long slow haul probably once a month for the next year at least . Somewhere along the way I will hit the right spot but I feel its going to take some doing but I know there is some good stuff to be found . :thumbsup:
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DaveP
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Blackadder43 wrote: Sun Mar 07, 2021 11:27 pm
If you get a plethora of early ish horseshoes then i'll pay the postage and have a few if you dont want them
I can send you 4 large late-ish every 6 weeks :lol: :thumbsup:
Dave The Slave
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Good to see you have another site you can now dig through, Paul.
Looking forward to seeing what bottles, jars, pots, lids, etc you unearth.
Cheers, :thumbsup:
Dave.
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