Tree-Ring Analysis of Timbers from the Bell Frame and Tower Roof of St Margaret's Church, Wetton, Staffordshire

Author(s): Alison Arnold, Robert Howard, Cliff Litton

Twenty-two samples from the bell-frame, support structure, and tower roof of St Margaret's Church were analysed by tree-ring dating. This analysis produced three dated and one undated site chronology, and dated one sample individually. The earliest material is represented by three samples from the tower roof in site chronology WETASQ03, its 84 rings spanning AD 1397 to AD 1480. These three samples indicate an estimated felling date in the range AD 1492 - AD 1517. The next phase of felling is represented by three east-west beams of the basal sub-structure. This 176-ring chronology, WETASQ02, spans AD 1415 - AD 1590, the three dated timbers representing trees felled in AD 1590. These timbers may be original but there is some evidence in the walls that they might have been inserted, or at least moved. If they were inserted this is unlikely to have been done after the bell frame above was constructed. The final phase of felling detected is that of the bell-frame itself, represented by the seven samples in site chronology WETASQ01, 263 rings long spanning AD 1368 - AD 1630, and a single sample dated individually. All the dated samples would suggest that the timbers were cut in AD 1630.

Report Number:
CfA Reports
Dendrochronology Standing Building


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