The unprecedented spell of hot, dry weather across Wales has provided perfect conditions for archaeological aerial photography. As the drought has persisted across Wales, scores of long-buried archaeological sites have been revealed once again as ‘cropmarks’, or patterns of growth in ripening crops and parched grasslands. The Royal Commission’s aerial investigator Dr Toby Driver has been busy in the skies across mid and south Wales over the last week documenting known sites in the dry conditions, but also discovering hitherto lost monuments. With the drought expected to last at least another two weeks Toby will be surveying right across north and south Wales in a light aircraft to permanently record these discoveries for the National Monuments Record of Wales, before thunderstorms and rain wash away the markings until the next dry summer.
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How cropmarks form in summer, DI2006_1443C
Wales-wide drought reveals further lost archaeological monuments
The Iron Age hillfort of Gaer Fawr near Lledrod, Ceredigion, looking across the parched landscape of mid Wales.
Cropmarks Gallery: Clues under the Landscape
Low reservoir levels at Nant y Moch, Ceredigion
Newly discovered cropmarks of a prehistoric or Roman farm near Langstone, Newport, south Wales.
A newly discovered Roman fortlet near Magor, south Wales, emerging in ripening crops.
The ‘playing card’ shape of Pen-llwyn Roman fort, Ceredigion emerging in parched grassland.
Extensive cropmarks of Trewen Roman farmstead or villa, Caerwent, south Wales.
The buried ramparts of Cross Oak Hillfort, Talybont on Usk, showing as cropmarks.
The almost ploughed-down medieval castle mound at Castell Llwyn Gwinau, Tregaron, showing clearly under parched conditions.
Click here to search Coflein for cropmarks in Wales