CSI: Rombalds Moor

A team of volunteers embarked on the Carved Stone Investigation (CSI): Rombalds Moor project with the aim of locating and recording the carved stones across Rombalds Moor.

Many of the markings, carved into the surfaces of boulders and outcrops of rock, date back more than 4000 years. Some of the markings may have taken only a few hours to create but those tiny fragments of time have survived over thousands of years to make us wonder at what life must have been like for them, and why they made them.

The surface of each ‘carved rock’ has its own unique pattern of markings. They can range from a single ‘cup’ to much more complex designs that many now call ‘Rock Art’. Such markings were made by chipping the surface of the rock to create circular depressions called ‘cups’, and lines of many shapes and sizes called ‘grooves’. Sometimes a ‘cup’ is surrounded by a ‘groove’ creating what is known as a ‘cup and ring’ mark, probably the best known symbol or 'petroglyph' of them all.

A number of the carved rocks that lie scattered across Rombalds Moor are now protected as Scheduled Monuments. This makes it a criminal offence for anyone to cause any damage to them, but it does not protect them from the effects of weathering. There is a lot of concern about what might be happening to them, but nobody knows for certain.

The CSI: Rombalds Moor team made detailed records of each of the stones, not only recording their location and carving, but also proximity to other archaeological features, and their current condition. They made a photographic record of each stone, also creating many digital 3D models. These records will not only help to monitor any changes in the conditions of the carvings, but also create a permanent record of what they once looked like for future study and research.

 

The records are available from the England's Rock Art website: Click here

The archive is housed with the West Yorkshire Historic Environment Record: Click here

For more information on the project view the CSI: Rombalds Moor blog: Click here

 

Related Community Heritage Updates:

Photogrammetry

Rocking Around Rombalds Moor

Rock Art at Risk

Surface Textures of Carved Rocks Revealed

CSI: Rombalds Moor - The Hidden Eldwick Stone

Digital Modelling of the Historic Environment