Tree-ring Dating Programme

It was hoped that dendrochronological dating of key timbers in the SiS area would add to what is known of settlement history around Ingleborough. It was felt this information would immeasurably add to the complex and detailed picture that has emerged through Project H3 (Thorns through Time) about Furness Abbey estates in this part of North Craven. There was no dendrochronology database for buildings in the Ingleborough area, of any date or period. It is assumed by those involved in vernacular building studies that certain styles of roofing timbers date to a certain period, but these conclusions are based on extrapolations from work done elsewhere rather than on hard evidence from this area. There was a definite need to build up a core database of dated buildings in this area. 

How was the project delivered?

Dendrochronology involves the analysis of samples of wood taken from buildings, but not all wood is in a condition suitable for the process. A condition survey across the National Park in 2006 estimated that in North Craven 37 per cent of traditional farm buildings were in excellent condition, 14 per cent in fair condition, 32 per cent poor or ruinous, with the balance already converted to alternative uses. Further survey work identified suitable buildings in the area and permission was sought to access the sites.

The samples taken were analysed by The Notting Tree-ring Dating Laboratory and the results formed the report. 

The 'on the ground data' was collected by Alison Armstrong and David Johnson. Alison Arnold and Robert Howard of The Notting Tree-ring Dating Laboratory undertook the lab based analysis. Alison Armstrong and David Johnson accrued over 30 days of volunteer time managing this project.

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