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Gill Mill Beef Unit South Leigh Oxfordshire

Dean, Brian Gill Mill Beef Unit South Leigh Oxfordshire. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Between 4th April and 21st April 2011 Oxford Archaeology carried out an evaluation in the area
of a potential extension to Gill Mill Quarry, Ducklington, Oxfordshire, on behalf of Smith and
Sons (Bletchington) Ltd. Subsequent to a geophysical survey, a total of 89 trenches were
excavated within the 44.5 ha site to check the character and interpretation of features revealed
in that survey and establish the presence, extent and character of other archaeological features
and deposits within parts of the site which produced no magnetic response. These excavations
revealed a moderate to low density of archaeological features. Dating evidence was extremely
limited in quantity, but suggested activity ranging from the middle Neolithic through to the later
Iron Age/Roman period. The site can be broadly characterised as having been utilised in two
main ways. The character of the earliest (Neolithic) activity is uncertain, but funerary use is
indicated in the northern central area of the site where evaluation confirmed the presence of a
row of three ring-ditches which were identified in the geophysical survey and also on earlier
aerial photographs. A Bronze Age date is likely for these features but no datable material was
recovered from interventions in their ditches. A probable truncated urned cremation burial
associated with the middle ring-ditch was left in situ. Later utilisation of the land for agrarian
purposes is suggested by a range of ditches and other features which were encountered
sporadically across the whole area of the site, but with apparent concentrations in the eastern
and western parts and a lower density of features in the central area, perhaps suggesting that
the vicinity of the ring-ditches remained less intensively used. The date of most of the linear
features is unknown, however. Some are likely to have formed parts of field systems associated
with the nearby major Roman settlement at Gill Mill. The evaluation thus sheds further light on
the surroundings of this site, but also provides some evidence of longer term use of this part of
the Windrush Valley in the millennia preceding the establishment of the Roman settlement
focus lying south-east of the present site

Item Type: Client Report
Subjects: Geographical Areas > English Counties > Oxfordshire
Period > UK Periods > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC
Period > UK Periods > Neolithic 4000 - 2200 BC
Period > UK Periods > Roman 43 - 410 AD
Divisions: Oxford Archaeology South > Fieldwork
Depositing User: Scott
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2014 12:19
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2014 12:19
URI: http://eprints.oxfordarchaeology.com/id/eprint/1645

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