At the end of last week, new archeological studies with georadar began in Varnhem.
“We have the visible monasteries here that are very clear and excavated in 1920. South of there are also monasteries, but there have never been investigations,” says Maria Vretemark, archaeologist at Västergötlands museum.
“We know that there must be a financial house for the monastery and we know that the water supply to the monastery comes from there. The monks had a clever irrigation plant, where the water was dammed up higher, and then a narrow channel to the monastery. In the monastery there was a water drain through the toilets and the kitchen, where you could drop on and off water.
From the Department of Historical Studies at Gothenburg University, Tony Axelsson, Associate Professor of Archeology, and Lotta Stenqvist, Archaeologist.
– Georadar is a preparatory method for soil exploration at archeological excavations, says Tony Axelsson. It’s like an echo sound, where you get deep discs from different depths in the ground, giving a three-dimensional image. It makes it possible to identify structures, such as old house grounds. We measure four meters down the ground here, you can go deeper but then the picture will not be as sharp.
Skara municipality will start work during the year to rebuild the lake and wetland area which has been south of Varnhems church. The monks had fish farms out there. There were fish like braxen and roast which were important food for the monks because they did not eat meat during the fasting.
“These are the first practical investigations we make as part of the wetlands facility,” says Maria Vretemark.
Varnhem and Kata Farm is a growing visitor destination in Platåberg’s Geopark. Last season there were 70,000 visitors in Kata farm. During the summer, Platåberg Geopark will have a temporary exhibition in connection with Skara municipality’s tourist information in Ryttaregården.
Wetland area south of Varnhem.