Lincolnshire’s dry summer makes its mark

The dry summer of 2018 has provided perfect conditions for ‘ghost’ outlines of ancient structures to appear in fields across the county.

Crop marks can be seen from aerial footage and they appear when crops absorb nutrients and water at different rates from the ground just above locations of ancient ditches or stonework.

During a heatwave or drought, the water and nutrient supplies from ancient ditch locations are better than the surrounding soil, meaning the crops grow taller and greener.

So despite centuries of ploughing,  we can find the location of ancient settlements, structures and features.

Rich Hardesty has kindly given us permission to share drone footage from July 2018 which clearly shows the crop marks in the field immediately to the west of our Tupholme Abbey site. These outlines show the ancient riverbed, hedge line, precinct wall and gatehouse.

Are you interested in learning how to identify features in the Lincolnshire landscape? Take our free, online ‘Introduction to Landscape Studies’ course and get involved with our Layers of History Project.