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Land off Bury Dyke, Crick, Northamptonshire

Bush, Louise (2015) Land off Bury Dyke, Crick, Northamptonshire. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Between the 2nd and 9th of March 2015 Oxford Archaeology East carried out an archaeological trench evaluation on land off Bury Dyke, Crick, Northamptonshire in support of an outline planning application for residential development.
The site was seen to contain upstanding earthworks believed to relate to the medieval period. Archaeological features cut into the natural land surface were encountered within all seven of the trenches.
Many of the sub-surface features did not appear to related to the earthworks, apart from in the area of the hollow way at the southern end of Trench 2. The majority of the site was sealed by two deep subsoil deposits (of up to 0.75m in thickness), implying that there could be a number of phases of activity to the site. Whilst no datable finds were retrieved from either subsoil layer, a single feature (in Trench 5) was seen to be cutting through the lower subsoil deposit.
The majority of the ditches across the site run parallel with or perpendicular to old boundaries still in existence today, with a clear bias toward a north-northwest to south-southeast alignment. This orientation is parallel with the development boundary, along with the orientation of Church Street to the west.
None of the features can definitively be associated with domestic structures, however the recovery of fragments of baked clay from the burnt fills of a number of features within Trenches 5 and 7 may imply that a building of some sort could have been situated in this area. Environmental samples taken from features across the site have produced extremely high quantities of charred plant and cereal grains, which would have formed a main component of the medieval diet. Further to this, four postholes which potentially could form part of a structure were revealed in Trench 7.
Nonetheless, little in the way of material culture was collected from the features uncovered, either implying that there was no one living in this precise area or that they took care to dispose of their waste in another location. During the archaeological works it was noted that the site was rather exposed (particularly on the western side). Looking westward, the topography drops away sharply with clear views out to the A5 (over 1km away) and beyond. This would add favour to the hypothesis that domestic activity was taking place to the east of site, out of the wind on the lee of the hill, potentially with strip fields and/or gardens occupying the present site.
Overall it can be said that the land off Bury Dyke, Crick contains archaeological remains dating from the 11th to 12th centuries. A background scatter of earlier pottery was collected during the archaeological works, this consisted of very low numbers of Bronze Age, Iron Age and Roman pottery along with a slightly larger assemblage of Anglo-Saxon pottery. A lack of securely datable finds from the feature fills means that there is a potential for some of the undated features to be earlier in date, however at present this cannot be confirmed.

Item Type: Client Report
Uncontrolled Keywords: archaeological evaluation, northamptonshire, Bury Dyke, Crick, mesolithic, mediaeval, earthworks
Subjects: Geographical Areas > English Counties > Northamptonshire
Period > UK Periods > Medieval 1066 - 1540 AD
Period > UK Periods > Mesolithic 10,000 - 4,000 BC
Period > UK Periods > Post Medieval 1540 - 1901 AD
Divisions: Oxford Archaeology East
Depositing User: Chris Faine
Date Deposited: 26 Oct 2015 11:11
Last Modified: 26 Oct 2015 11:11
URI: http://eprints.oxfordarchaeology.com/id/eprint/2624

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