• Michael Heaton

    Heritage Consultants

  • Professional & Technical Support

    Planning & management of works affecting archaeological sites & historic buildings

  • Making knowledge work for you
  • Since 1996

    Working with a wide range of clients, from property developers and private clients to national government and the National Trust



Whilst we have no academic pretensions, every now and then the results of our work are of wider interest to the study and practice of archaeology and cultural heritage management. These are generally published in the appropriate local or period journal, but the internet is a quicker and more widely disseminated medium for this sort of information.

A selection of the reports are presented below, either as PDFs of the published articles or as raw - un-peer reviewed - reports.

Soil biology of burial environments.

Observations made during the excavation and analysis of prehistoric 'beaker' pits on Salisbury Plain, suggest that archaeological burial environments are far more biologically active has been hitherto assumed; and, more importantly, that physical disturbance of them stimulates the deposit-destructive biological activity. The observations are supported by Professor Karl Ritz of the National Soil Resources Institute at the University of Cranfield, Silsoe, whose IFA conference paper on the subject is attached here.

The first purpose-built fire station in the world?.

Were House, built here in Warminster before 1838, was demolished in August 2004 with the blessing of the local planning authority and English Heritage. Archaeological building analysis and research suggest that this humble building may have been the first purpose-built fire station in the world.! Well done everyone !  READ MORE...

Flying buttress foundations.

Investigation of flying buttress foundations at Christchurch Priory in Dorset, suggest that not all medieval church builders understood the statics of large masonry structures. Two stages of investigation reported. STOP PRESS !. Additional research reveals the entire North Nave Aisle was also underpinned in 1906. READ MORE...

Medieval timber frames in Georgian Bath.

Complete cross frames of late 16th century jettied shops, revealed during refurbishment of the last gentlemen's outfitters in Bath (now Cafe Nero), suggest that the Georgian redevelopment of Bath wasn't as wholesale as architectural history would have us believe. This is the first substantive evidence of secular medieval fabric survival in central Bath. Unbelievably, Bath City Council made the owner cover it all back up again!.READ MORE...

Marlborough Motte and Bailey ditch.

Observations made during construction of a new swimming pool at Marlborough College demonstrate that the Norman castle did, indeed, have an outer bailey. READ MORE...

Crinolines and Scaffolding.

Archive research for the Christchurch Priory conservation plan has found a possibly 'abnormal' cluster of women builders operating there in the 18th and 19th centuries. This short article, published in the newsletter of the Construction History Society, assesses their significance. READ MORE...