elongated enclosures(two parallel lines on the photograph)
are situated on the valley floor of the River Stour in the
north of the Parish(the river runs to the left of this photograph).
Elongated enclosures are probably amongst the earliest constructions;
likely to be Neolithic in date. On the aerial photograph,
you can see the longbarrow and the Bronze Age ring ditches,
but not the cursuses, one of which is north of the river
and the other in Wormingford.
The line of
pits along the northeast (the ditch is the north-east ditch,
i.e. facing south-west) ditch was first recorded on this
photograph from 1996, and as yet has no parallel in the
county. It is possible, however, that the lines result from
quarry ditches of an earthen long barrow, and that the pits
supported timber posts which probably formed part of the
Long barrows often contained the disarticulated skeletons
of important individuals from the local Neolithic community.
It seems likely that the bodies of the dead were exposed
to the elements prior to internment, possibly on platforms,
and it has been suggested that this would have occurred
inside mortuary enclosures.
The river, which now forms the boundary between Essex and
Suffolk, was the focus of an extensive prehistoric ritual
landscape containing concentrations of barrows.
The two ring-ditches
(lower field in photograph) were part of a concentrated
Commencing October 2011, the Colchester Archaeological Group
(CAG) decided to excavate a trench through one of the long
barrow (ditch) lines to see if they could find any evidence
of their original structure.
Image orientated to face North
and Aline Black carrying out the geophysics to obtain
an accurate location of the two parallel lines.
These results coincided perfectly with the field markings
on the aerial photographs.
white line indicates the position of the trench
as described below.
These lines (ditches) are approximately 30m apart - the
postholes/pits (see below)are 9m apart
dated 20th October 2011
CAG member(foreground) is digging, where the ditch line
dissect the trench,
large hole - but what was it for ?
CAG Members:-Don Goodman (left)
Anna Moore and Denise Hardy.
(See the latest photographs below)
Soil here is of a
different nature to the rest of the trench.
This coincided with
the Magnetometry readings which confirmed the two
parallel (crop mark) lines.
( see photographs above)
at the end of the dig,
16th November 2011.
Photo above and right shows a "pit" of
some considerable depth.
With no archaeological finds in this cavity, no
precise explanation can be given as to its use.
It remains a mystery.
Final depth of trench,
which cut across
the crop mark lines
This shows the extent
of the excavation.
The "pit" is in the right foreground.
The team found a small fragment
of cremated human bone, a few small sherds of prehistoric
pottery and a quantity of charcoal. The charcoal is likely
to be of most interest, as it can be dated using the carbon14
Full details of the conclusion
will be posted here as soon as CAG release the material
Acknowledgment to Anna
Moore (CAG) for her valuable assistance in helping with
the text and allowing
me to photograph the site.
The results of a Carbon14
The date of the charcoal in the ditch came out at 3641-3516BC,
which means that the ditch was being filled in between those
more information contact the Colchester Archaeological Group.
Other CAG members attending this site:- Pauline Shinn, Louise
Harrison, Jonathan Oldham, Graham Brondell, Les Peck, Carole
Wheeldon and John Mallinson.
Updated 22nd Nov 2011