Speaker Dr Murray Cook.

Fri 23rd November 2018 at 12.55 - 14.00

Topic:- Archaeological Highlights of 2018

pp Sandy Leven Dr Murray Cook, Tom Thomson

Rotary club of Stirling meeting of 23rd November.


PP Sandy Leven in the chair, welcomed our speaker Dr Murray Cook.
 Taking as his subject archaeological highlights of 2018, Murray Cook focused on three areas that he has recently been involved with within Stirling. As archaeological advisor to the council Murray is also consulted on planning decisions, in this case in the King's Park. What is now known as King's Park is of course only a small part of the original "King's Park", and the remains of a wall which enclosed the area still shape the present landscape. Within this walled area the King would hunt deer and joust, then after 1500 archery, at that time much encouraged by he King, in an area still known as the butt field. The remains of a track connecting the King's Knot to the old cemetery below the castle have recently been cleared and reopened.  Old buildings often contain parts of much older structures within their walls. In this case an 18th century building was noted to have a peculiar stone protruding high in the gable end, which proved to be part of a font dating from before the reformation. Post reformation this Roman Catholic artefact was, rather than being destroyed, concealed in plain sight as part of a later building.  Murray then turned to Torbrex Tam, misnamed as he was found in Coneypark and should perhaps have been called Colin. The remains were found amongst ruins in what used to be Drummond's nursery.
The skull, currently on display at the Smith, is badly damaged with the left jaw missing, despite which, using isotope analysis it has been possible to identify him as a 20-year-old male who died about 4039 years ago.  In addition, recent reconstruction of the skull gives us some idea of what he looked like. The face looks somewhat criminal like which may be because the technique used is also that used in police forensic work. As always Murray entertained and informed with his extensive
knowledge.

Our next meeting 30th November Speaker's host Sandy Leven, Visitor's host Ian Richardson.

Ian Richardson