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Land East of Warren Hill, Saxmundham, Suffolk: PXA and UPD

Clarke, Graeme (2016) Land East of Warren Hill, Saxmundham, Suffolk: PXA and UPD. Project Report. Oxford Archaeology Ltd., Bar Hill. (Unpublished)

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Between the 9th December 2015 and 8th February 2016 Oxford Archaeology East (OA East) carried out excavations at Land East of Warren Hill, Saxmundham, Suffolk. Excavation was proposed of three areas, totalling 1.02 hectares, across the proposed development area.
The location of the excavation areas were based on the results of previous phases of work including a desk-based assessment, geophysical survey and two phases of archaeological evaluation. The evaluation revealed archaeological remains from multiple periods including: Late Neolithic/Early Bronze Age pitting; a Middle Iron Age roundhouse ring ditch and associated pits; and medieval boundary ditches.
The excavation of the first area, in the southern part of the site (Area 1), did not encounter any significant remains with only a large clay filled pit yielding a small quantity of Late Neolithic/Early Bronze Age flintwork.
A substantial Early Bronze Age pit cluster was revealed in the second excavation area, in the northern part of the site (Area 2), the fills of which produced rusticated, Beaker-type pottery and flintwork that suggest occupation of the site during this period. This occupation along the River Fromus is further attested by two further pit clusters of the period previously excavated in the near vicinity.
The excavation of Area 2 uncovered the full extent of the Middle Iron Age Iron Age roundhouse found during the evaluation. A further Middle Iron Age roundhouse and associated pitting activity were also revealed.
Unexpectedly, the excavation of this area also demonstrated the presence of a significant Early Saxon settlement. A large rectangular post-built structure, possibly representing a hall, was revealed with evidence for a further two post-built structures. In addition, nine sunken-feature buildings (SFBs) were revealed and excavated.
The post-built and sunken-feature buildings contained hand made pottery, including decorated sherds, indicating an early 6th century AD date to the Saxon settlement. Furthermore, the sunken-feature building deposits yielded finds indicating cloth weaving, crop processing, horn-working and antler-working activities. A cruciform brooch of the period was also recovered with other fragments of metalwork, including two whittle tang knives. The basal fills of the SFBs were treated as possible primary refuse deposits, with the finds and environmental samples mapped to further aid in the reconstruction of the use of these buildings.
The Area 2 excavation was extended at the expense of the proposed third area of excavation towards the northern edge of the site and the medieval boundary ditches encountered in the evaluation. This approach was adopted so that the limit to the Early Saxon settlement could be better defined. In total 1.5ha was investigated.
The remains encountered in this excavation are of local and regional significance, providing the first direct evidence for the Early Saxon origins of Saxmundham and giving a rare insight to an Early Bronze Age non-funerary site in Suffolk.

Item Type: Monograph (Project Report)
Uncontrolled Keywords: archaeological excavation, Suffolk, suffolk, Saxmundham, saxmundham, Saxon, saxon, Early medieval, Early Medieval, early medieval, Iron Age, iron age, ring ditch, SFB, sfb, sunken featured building, post-built structure, beaker, Beaker, beaker pottery, cruciform brooch, Brooch, brooch, PXA, pxa, UPD, upd, post-excavation assessment, updated project design, grubenhaus, pottery, pot, sherd, ceramic, iron age pottery, saxon pottery, bronze age pottery, Iron Age pottery, Saxon pottery, Bronze Age pottery, worked flint, settlement, Neolithic, neolithic, Late Neolithic, late neolithic, Bronze Age, bronze age, Early Bronze Age, early bronze age, 1897, report 1897, Report 1897, OAE report 1897
Subjects: Geographical Areas > English Counties > Suffolk
Period > UK Periods > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC
Period > UK Periods > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC > Early Bronze Age 2500 - 1500 BC
Period > UK Periods > Early Medieval 410 - 1066 AD
Period > UK Periods > Iron Age 800 BC - 43 AD
Period > UK Periods > Neolithic 4000 - 2200 BC > Late Neolithic 2700 - 2200 BC
Divisions: Oxford Archaeology East
Depositing User: Chris Faine
Date Deposited: 17 Nov 2016 10:58
Last Modified: 08 Apr 2019 13:34
URI: http://eprints.oxfordarchaeology.com/id/eprint/2944

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