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Late Iron Age to Early Roman Settlement at North-west Ely, Field I: PXA and UPD

Moan, Patrick (2017) Late Iron Age to Early Roman Settlement at North-west Ely, Field I: PXA and UPD. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

During December 2016 and January 2017, Oxford Archaeology East (OA East) undertook an excavation at North-West Ely, Cambridgeshire (TL 54385 81770). This excavation was part of Phase 2 within the larger North-West Ely development (designated as Field I by OA East). A total of 0.766ha was stripped by machine revealing an Earlier Iron Age watering hole, Late Iron Age ring ditch and two structures, Early Roman field systems, midden spread and pits as well as a grave containing the remains of five individuals. The ring ditch was originally one of three possible features identified during geophysical survey as roundhouses. The unusually large size of the feature would suggest that the ditch does not represent the drip gully of a roundhouse but instead a relatively large circular enclosure that contained a structure, although no surviving features of the latter were found. The evidence from the excavation clearly demonstrates that a settlement was located directly north and east of the development area, the edge of which has been identified within this area. Surrounding the settlement would have been small paddock-like enclosures and other field systems that would probably have supported both arable and pastoral farming. The density of archaeological features relating to settlement within the north-east part of the excavation clearly indicated that the settlement was relatively long lived, with multiple phases of activity from the Later Iron Age onwards. The ceramic evidence suggests the settlement either nucleated or ended during the 2nd century, as no further settlement-related features were found after this period. Small finds from the site included three Early Roman coins, a copper alloy hairpin fragment, a bone weaving tool, a glass 'gaming counter', 11 iron nails and one iron knife. A total of 7959g of Iron Age pottery, 32339g of Early Roman pottery, 28 fragments of worked stone (saddle quern, millstone and whetstone fragments), 1210g of ceramic building material, 1195g of fired clay and 44 worked flints were also recovered during the excavation, along with 23450g of animal bone (mostly cattle and sheep/goat; some fragments with evidence of butchery). A single, very shallow, grave was also uncovered, containing the remains of five individuals. Environmental results were relatively poor in comparison to the artefactual remains. Few charred plant remains were recovered from samples, and the best preserved remains were found in the waterlogged fills of the Earlier Iron Age and Early Roman watering holes excavated on the site.

Item Type:Client Report
Uncontrolled Keywords:Excavation, excavation, archaeological excavation, Cambridgeshire, cambridgeshire, Ely, ely, Iron Age, iron age, Late Iron Age, late iron age, Roman, roman, Pottery, pottery, pot, ceramic, sherd, Iron Age pottery, iron age pottery, Late Iron Age pottery, late iron age pottery, Roman pottery, roman pottery, animal remains, animal bones, animal bone, bone, bones, HSR, hsr, Human Skeletal Remains, human skeletal remains, Human remains, human remains, burial, grave, quern, saddle quern, counter, gaming piece, glass counter, glass gaming piece, bead, segmented bead, glass bead, glass segmented bead, coin, Roman coin, roman coin, ditch, enclosure, settlement, structure, post hole, posthole, ring gully, field system, agriculture, PXA, pxa, upd, UPD, Post-Excavation Assessment, post-excavation assessment, Post-excavation Assessment, Updated Project Design, updated project design, 2051, report 2051, Report 2051, OAE report 2051
Subjects:Geographical Areas > English Counties > Cambridgeshire
Period > UK Periods > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC
Period > UK Periods > Iron Age 800 BC - 43 AD
Period > UK Periods > Iron Age 800 BC - 43 AD > Late Iron Age 100 BC - 43 AD
Period > UK Periods > Roman 43 - 410 AD
ID Code:4970
Deposited By: Hamilton
Deposited On:24 Jun 2019 10:39
Last Modified:24 Jun 2019 10:39

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