As readers will known, I have been keeping an eye on Waun Mawn for at least ten years now, and have been greatly intrigued by the research up there on the common undertaken by Mike Parker Pearson and his team, culminating in digs in 2017 and 2018. They have found nothing of any importance, and have published no proper research papers. In the two brief informal reports that have been published in association with grant applications, I have been intrigued by the manner in which the researchers appear to be completely unaware of both the geological context and the archaeological context. Since context is everything, this is rather a serious matter. As if this is not enough, the descriptions of the field research are so full of unsupported assertions that it is impossible to subject the "evidence" to proper scrutiny or to unravel the facts from the fantasies. Maybe some proper papers will appear in due course in the archaeological journals, but I do not hold out any hope that they will be any more reliable or convincing than the articles relating to Craig Rhosyfelin and Carn Goedog.
The two Waun Mawn Reports are here, if you want to see what I am talking about and want to judge for yourselves:The Welsh origins of Stonehenge [RFF-2017-23]
2017 Report from Principal Investigator: Michael Parker Pearson
Interim report of the 2018 season
Mike Parker Pearson, Josh Pollard, Colin Richards, Kate Welham, Dave Shaw, Ellen Simmons and Adam Stanford
Bluestone Brewing, May 2019, 15 pp
Peer review is now welcomed. I will be happy to publish comments on this blog, and will amend or correct the Researchgate article as may be appropriate in the light of what comes up. Democratic peer review, beyond the reach of manipulative and biased editors, is something that I find quite refreshing on the Researchgate platform........
Anyway, in my book there is just not enough evidence to show that there ever was a complete -- or even partial or unfinished -- stone circle here. There is no evidence from Waun Mawn or anywhere else that foliated rhyolite or spotted dolerite was considered special or revered enough to be used in megalithic monuments in the neighbourhood. There are no demonstrable geological or archaeological links between Carn Goedog, Cerrigmarchogion or Craig Rhosyfelin and Waun Mawn. The archaeologists have homed in on a relatively insignificant archaeological feature in the landscape and have ignored -- or not even noticed -- many other features that are far more significant. There is no basis for claiming that this was one of the great centres of Neolithic or Bronze Age culture in the British Isles. There is nothing at all at Waun Mawn to suggest any link with Stonehenge.
But Waun Mawn is a very pleasant spot indeed for a picnic on a nice summer day.........
PS. There was a confirmation from Toby Driver (on the Coflein web site) last year that 39 radiocarbon dates have been done on small carbonized fragments of oak and hazel, which seem to have been the only organic remains discovered in the digs. OS dating has been done on some of the sediments in the hollows interpreted as sockets. All the dates will apparently be reported in an article (presumably in the pipeline) for "Antiquity" journal.