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‘Claying’ at King’s Farm Chatteris TL456857. An Archaeological Evaluation

Kemp, Steve (1996) ‘Claying’ at King’s Farm Chatteris TL456857. An Archaeological Evaluation. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Archaeological desk based research and fieldwork was carried out by the Archaeological Field Unit of Cambridgeshire County Council at King’s farm, Chatteris during April and May 1996.Archaeological work was undertaken on behalf of Tarmac Roadstone (Central) Limited. The proposed development includes an irrigation lake within 5.2 hectares of land presently used for arable and pasture. Twenty-six trenches of up to 20m in length and 1.8m wide were machine excavated on a staggered grid across the development area. The basic stratigraphic sequence consists of terrace gravels, overlain by up to 0.76m of desiccated peat which is largely truncated as a result of nineteenth century farming activities. All trenches contained parallel sub-rectangular pits averaging 1.8m x 1.12m in size where they cut through the buried soil. They did not cut into the gravels. The pits form continuous linear arrangements orientated north-west to south-east across the site. They are typical of ‘claying’, an agricultural technique employed in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, which attempted to reduce peat erosion by introducing clay as a binding agent into the plough soil. The process of claying destroyed the original stratigraphic sequence across much of the site. However, remnants of a buried soil and deposits reflecting the initialisation of peat growth are preserved in pockets throughout the development area. Buried soil within Trench 21 is characteristic of the Ed horizon of an arillic brown earth or former woodland soil (French pers. comm.). In Trench 21 hand excavation of the buried soil which had formed within or collapsed into a tree root depression revealed two flint artefacts: a core and a flake which are probably Neolithic or Bronze Age date. Further investigation revealed no additional traces of prehistoric activity. Other than the presence of 19th or 20th century hand dug ‘claying’ pits no other archaeological features were present. Given the results of the extensive trenching strategy undertaken it is unlikely that any other archaeological remains are present within the application area.

Item Type:Client Report
Uncontrolled Keywords:A93, a93, report A93, report a93, King’s Farm, Chatteris, chatteris, Cambridgeshire, Cambridgeshire, DBA, desk-based assessment, evaluation, micromorphological study, pollen analysis, buried soil horizon, flint, pit, claying pit, clay extraction site, Neolithic, Bronze Age, post-medieval, modern, neolithic, bronze age, peat
Subjects:Geographical Areas > English Counties > Cambridgeshire
Period > UK Periods > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC
Period > UK Periods > Modern 1901 - present
Period > UK Periods > Neolithic 4000 - 2200 BC
Period > UK Periods > Post Medieval 1540 - 1901 AD
ID Code:4333
Deposited By: Archives
Deposited On:17 Sep 2018 16:30
Last Modified:17 Sep 2018 16:30

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