Sponsor a Find

Sponsor a Find certificate

The Ness of Brodgar excavation has produced tens of thousands of finds – pot, worked stone, flint, decorated stone, pumice, charcoal, not to mention vast quantities of bone and samples.

All of this material holds the story of the Neolithic complex.

We must curate it all to the highest standards, not just for current archaeological science but also for the future, when new techniques will allow more questions to be answered.

Although all of this is under way, we need more funds to complete this mammoth task and this is where Sponsor a Find comes in.

  • Periodically we will post details of finds and invite you to sponsor them.
  • No limit on the number of people sponsoring each find.
  • Sponsor the find just once or make regular donations towards its care.
  • Give your sponsorship as a gift to someone else.
  • “Collect” types of finds or from the different trenches and structures.
  • We’ll send you a sponsorship certificate.

The finds

(Objects from batch 1, batch 2 and batch 3 are still available to sponsor)

Timber plank

Timber plank
  • Small Find no 45890
  • Structure Twenty-Seven, Trench T
  • Found 2023

Structure Twenty-Seven also produced the most exciting find of 2023 – a substantial part of a plank of wood.

Its survival was totally unexpected and it took several days of discussion, careful planning and excavation by Elena before the plank could be removed.  It has now been boxed up, with water, to preserve it until UHI Archaeology Institute botanical specialist, associate professor Scott Timpany, takes over. 

We will be able to tell much from his examination, but already know it features tool marks. 

Will the wood be a native Orcadian species, or something washed north from mainland Britain? Or, even more exciting, driftwood that made its way across the Atlantic from the Americas? 


Camptonite axehead

Camptonite axehead (2021)
  • Small Find no 41367
  • Structure Five, Trench J
  • Found 2021

One of a number of polished stone axes recovered from Trench J. This one, measuring a mere 5cm long, is intriguing. What was it for?

Whatever its role it was beautifully crafted. Small, but perfectly formed.


Squashed Grooved Ware vessel

Grooved Ware Pot
  • Small Find no 44751
  • Central Paved Area, Trench P
  • Found 2023

This was an exciting find! It’s a pretty much complete, small, decorated pot. Admittedly, it’s a squashed complete pot, but it’s rare for us to find intact ceramic pieces.

We will carefully examine all aspects of the vessel, when we get it into the laboratory, to tell us what it was used for and to think about the clay it was made from. And also to consider why a whole pot, rather than pieces, was deposited where it was found.


Decorated stone fragment

Decorated stone fragment.
  • Small Find no 44914
  • Structure One, Trench P
  • Found 2023

You can see how small this piece of decorated stone is. When Emma found it in the nothern end of Structure One, the stone was lying  face down. It had an unusual gingery brown colour, unlike other stones in her area, and she turned it over to find this. 

The incised decoration is typical Ness lines and cross-hatching, but to the left is almost a Ness “butterfly” and other fine markings. 

It’s clearly been part of a larger piece originally. Will we find more of it in 2024?


Rhodochrosite pillow stone fragment

Rhodochrosite fragment
  • Small Find no 46169
  • Structure Thirty, Trench P
  • Found 2023

A beautiful fragment of a Late Neolithic pillow stone – a type of artefact we find at the Ness and rarely at other sites.

What makes this treasure particularly interesting is that we already have two other pillow stones made from this beautiful rock – rhodochrosite – which comes from inaccessible veins in the island of Hoy.