Those who have been to Poulton will know that Poulton Chapel became home to Oliver Cromwell’s troops during the English Civil War when they were billeted at the Chapel. It would not have been used by the local population during this time and it’s likely that a fair bit of damage was done to it by the soldiers. In any event it fell into disrepair and became a ruin not long after the siege of Chester. We have unearthed a number of musket balls and, as you can see from the photos, they were not always made of lead. Some were rounded pebbles and they weren’t small either. They were likely to shatter on impact not only killing the poor soul who got in the way, but the shrapnel would have caused dreadful injuries to those in the immediate vicinity. Also pictured is a piece of black flint which , on close inspection, shows the strike marks around it’s edges . The flint would have been fastened into the cock hammer by means of a retaining screw. When the musket was loaded and primed the cock hammer was pulled half way back ( I guess that’s where the expression comes from ) and when ready to fire, the hammer was pulled all the way back. Once the trigger was pulled the hammer went down, the flint hit the strike plate and the resulting spark ignited the powder and ….boom !