Julian Ravest moved to mid-Wales some five years ago and became entranced by its archaeology. He saw the potential opened up by the availability of drones for the exploration and discovery of archaeological sites. From the beginning, Julian has worked closely with the Clwyd Powys Archaeological Trust for whom he has contributed photographs and information to some 400 sites and has discovered nearly 100 previously un-recorded sites. More recently he is working with the Offa’s Dyke Collaborative and, more relevantly to Abbey Cwmhir, with the Strata Florida Project.
Julian will be drawing on this experience with drone photography as a tool to explore Abbey Cwmhir. In particular, the advent of advanced computer software to analyse aerial photographs has dramatically increased the power of this tool. This has revealed subtle changes in surface levels which have provided clues to sub-surface features associated with the Abbey which have not previously been recorded. The same software can also be applied to data provided by Lidar. Lidar data is produced by plane-borne laser equipment. Together, these photogrammetric techniques have been applied to the Abbey site and have produced new insights and discoveries. Julian will be relating these results to earlier interpretations of the site and its history, and to some of the other sites he has investigated.