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Overstone Green, Northamptonshire

Sparks, Lee (2019) Overstone Green, Northamptonshire. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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In November 2018, Oxford Archaeology were commissioned by Pegasus
Group on behalf of Davidsons Group and Gallagher Estates to undertake an
archaeological evaluation on the site of a proposed housing development to
the north-west of Overstone, Northamptonshire (SP 804 674). A programme
of 259 trenches was undertaken across the site to ground-truth a previous
phase of geophysical survey and assess the archaeological potential of the
The evaluation confirmed the presence of archaeological remains in areas
identified on the geophysical survey. The results of the evaluation
corresponded well with the mapped features, whilst other features were
found to match areas of geological variations. Undated ditches were also
identified within areas not highlighted in the survey.
The remains of a potential linear round barrow cemetery were found in the
southern corner of the site. Three potential barrows were identified within
the geophysical survey; one was confirmed through trenching, no traces of the
second barrow could be found and third was not investigate due to the
presence of overhead power cables. No central burials or buried soils were
found associated with the barrow remains, which had been ploughed flat.
Bronze Age pottery and charred cereal grains recovered from the ditch fills,
indicated later cultivation of the surrounding fields, potential from the middlelate
Bronze Age through to the Roman period. As series of undated fieldsystem
ditches were also identified in the fields to the west and north-east of the site.
A middle-late Iron-Age enclosed farmstead was found in the south-east of the
site. This contained a concentration of features including pits, postholes and
enclosure ditches that contained a small assemblage of pottery, animal bone
and burnt stone. Charred cereal grains from the ditch fills indicate the
enclosure was domestic in nature and was surrounded by cultivated fields. A
potential un-urned cremation was also identified just outside of the enclosure
to the north-east. Evidence of fieldsystem ditches were also identified in fields
2, 3 and 7. A Roman ditch was also identified to the west of the site within
field 1.
No Saxon activity was identified on the site, but the surrounding area has
produced a wealth of both settlement and burial activity from this period.
Evidence from the site of Overstone Leys, just to the south of the site, indicates
early Saxon burials and settlement activity associated with the barrow
cemetery. It is possible this activity may extend into the site area, focused on
the continuation of the cemetery.
Medieval and early post-medieval ridge and furrow cultivation was recorded
across the site during the evaluation. The furrows are typically aligned northwest
to south-east, at 5m to 8m intervals, and often exhibit gentle S-curves rather than running perfectly straight. Historic mapping indicates that the site
has largely continued in agricultural use until the present-day.
Based on the results of the evaluation, two main areas of significant
archaeological activity were identified; around the barrow and ditches in field
4 and the rectangular enclosure/cremation in field 5. Less dense areas of
undated field ditches were also identified within fields 2, 3, 7 and 8. The
geophysical mapping and the trenching is believed to provide a good indicator
as to the areas of archaeological potential.

Item Type: Client Report
Subjects: Geographical Areas > English Counties > Northamptonshire
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 > Bronze Age 2500 - 700 BC > Middle Bronze Age 1600 - 1,000 BC
Divisions: Oxford Archaeology South > Fieldwork
Depositing User: Scott
Date Deposited: 11 May 2023 07:14
Last Modified: 11 May 2023 07:14
URI: http://eprints.oxfordarchaeology.com/id/eprint/7100

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