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M2 Junction 5 Improvements, Kent

Davies, Alex and Peacock, Rebecca and Brown, Lisa and Booth, Paul and Cotter, John and Donnelly, Mike and Dungworth, David and Poole, Cynthia and Scott, Ian and Shaffrey, Ruth and Brown, Ben and Rousseaux, Charles M2 Junction 5 Improvements, Kent. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

An archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Oxford Archaeology in October and November 2017 around Junction 5 of the M2, Kent. The work was commissioned by Hochtief (UK) Ltd on behalf of Highways England. A 5% sample of the 21.8 hectare site was agreed, comprising 71 trenches. No features of archaeological significance were found south-west of the junction, and only one undated feature to the north-east. To the north-west and south-east, however, there were features and finds of a variety of dates. A relatively large assemblage of flintwork was recovered. The majority of this was of Mesolithic date, and included both material possibly from contemporary features, including a deep pit or shaft, and redeposited in later contexts. There was also widespread flintwork of Neolithic or early Bronze Age date. A few sherds of flint-tempered pottery of late Bronze Age or Iron age date were also found in features, but the quantities were too small to date these features with confidence. Some activity of later prehistoric date however clearly took place in the north-western part of the site. Two areas of smelting activity were discovered, one on the north-west, the other on the south-east. Two radiocarbon dates were obtained, a late Iron Age date from the south-east area, and a late Iron Age or early Roman date from the north-west area, alongside pottery of a similar date. One or more furnaces were uncovered as well as a relatively large quantity of metalworking debris. This included slag from non-tapping and tapping furnaces, generally assigned to the Iron Age and Roman periods respectively. A technological transition is therefore apparent at these sites, moving to more effective smelting techniques. The site shares many similarities to two bloomeries recently excavated at Stockbury nearby. Part of the Chatham Land Front defensive line was known to pass through the site. This was built in response to a possible German invasion during World War One. Elements of this complex were discovered during the evaluation, although they do not appear to be well preserved. Areas of made ground were discovered in the central part of the site at the bottom of the valley. These layers are over 2m deep, and were probably deposited during the construction of the M2

Item Type:Client Report
Subjects:Geographical Areas > English Counties > Kent
Period > UK Periods > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC
Period > UK Periods > Iron Age 800 BC - 43 AD
Period > UK Periods > Mesolithic 10,000 - 4,000 BC
Period > UK Periods > Neolithic 4000 - 2200 BC
Period > UK Periods > Roman 43 - 410 AD
ID Code:3971
Deposited By: Scott
Deposited On:03 Jul 2018 11:17
Last Modified:03 Jul 2018 11:17

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