Swordle Huel was one of three Swordle townships occupied prior to the clearances during the mid 1800s. After three seasons of work at Swordle Corrach, we began excavating here because we were interested to see if this was a similar settlement, and to see if the clearances affected this settlement in the same way. We have excavated two structures on the site so far and there are undoubtedly some similarities between Swordle Huel and Swordle Corrach. Most notably, like Swordle Corrach, there are two phases of structures, with earlier unmortared buildings and later mortared structures both present. However, at Swordle Huel this phasing is much more distinct because at least one of the mortared structures was built within, and using some of the walls of an earlier, unmortarted structure. In this building the fire place was found, but no hot plate was left in the way we observed at one of the structures at Swordle Corrach. In the other building at the site a similar process of reuse may have taken place, but we need to excavate this structure further to find out more. This is a much larger structure, with rounded ends, and internal divisions, suggesting it is an earlier byre-type structure.
We are only part of the way through excavating Swordle Huel and there are still many questions to answer here. Future excavation will help us to work out the complicated phasing here and to understand the processes of construction and abandonment in more detail.