Monument record IPS 585 - 85-87 Fore Street, Ipswich, (IAS 6106)

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Several instances of excavation and evaluation yielded finds from Saxon to Post-Medieval. Including sunken featured buildings. Evaluation revealed areas of truncation across the site, but also shallow medieval deposits were identified that probably seal Saxon occupation deposits.


Grid reference Centred TM 1683 4418 (26m by 42m)
Map sheet TM14SE


Type and Period (17)

Full Description

1990: Excavation, finds from Saxon to Post-Medieval. Including sunken featured buildings (S1).

2007: A trial trench was carried out at the above site in advance of a proposal to construct student accommodation. The southern part of the site was found to have seen heavy truncation due to 19th cellaring along the Fore Street frontage. Significant, but slightly less substantial truncation was encountered in much of the rest of the site, with the exception of an area approximately 12m deep along the northern frontage. Here relatively shallow coherent medieval soil-like deposits were identified at c. 4.2 AOD (less than 1m below existing ground level). Given that evidence for Saxon occupation was recorded in an earlier excavation in 1990 it is presumed that similar well-preserved remains may lay in this part of the site sealed beneath the medieval deposits. Excavation of an area along the northern frontage was therefore recommended, in the event that construction mitigation is not sufficient to ensure the preservation of these deposits (S2).

Post 2007: Excavation was undertaken prior to development for planning application IP/07/00970. A total of 13 burials orientated E-W were excavated in the northern part of the site, ceasing 15m to the south of the northern site edge. They were poorly preserved, having seen some vertical truncation in the past, although they were encountered 1.5m below the current ground level. Although undated, burials were suggested to have related to St Clement's Church. A change in land use was indicated by a series of five cess pits which cut many of the graves. Find from them suggest they were in use into the last quarter of the 16th century. A large rectangular structure was recorded at least 3.5 long x 1.5 wide x 0.5m deep with 13 post/pile settings cut into it's base. The cess pits may have been on communal ground between properties, or may relate to a tenement on Fore Street. Church land may have been sold off to accommodate the rapid development of a wealthy merchant suburb at the onset of the 17th century (S6).
Excavation plans and mapinfo on record. Report waiting, assumed because of funding issues. Archive deposited with SCCAS in 2019 - no post-excavation work undertaken.

Sources/Archives (6)

  • <S1> Unpublished document: Wade, K. 2014. Ipswich Archive Site Summaries: Site name: 85-87 Fore Street.
  • <S2> Unpublished document: Gardner, R.. 2007. Archaeological Evaluation Report, 85-87 Fore Street, Ipswich, IPS 585, IAS 6101.
  • <S3> Index: Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service. 1974. Ipswich Archaeological Survey Card Index (digital version).. IAS 61016.
  • <S4> Index: Suffolk Archaeology Unit. 1974. SAU index card and Archive. IAS 6106.
  • <S5> Index: IPSMG. 2009. Ipswich Museum renumbered Ipswich archive. R.2009.71.
  • <S6> Article in serial: 2009. Gardner, R 'Ipswich, 85-7 Fore Street' PSIAH. XLII (1) 2009.

Finds (6)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (5)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Aug 17 2021 9:33AM

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