Monument record CSM 047 - Multi-period activity at Land East of Longfield Road

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Prehistoric pits, medieval structure-type features, ditch and pit as well as 19th century field boundary and post-medieval pond and ditches.


Grid reference Centred TM 0982 3858 (268m by 386m)
Map sheet TM03NE


Type and Period (22)

Full Description

2016: Geophysical survey identified no features of archaeological origins, however two old field boundaries have been recorded and are visible on historical mapping (S1).

2016: Evaluation demonstrated that peripheral areas of the site contained various prehistoric, Roman and medieval features and finds. Late post-medieval activity was also recorded within the central/north-eastern part of the site.
The prehistoric period was represented by several pits and a linear feature. One of the pits contained a few fragments of daub in its lower fill and rare charcoal flecks and a sherd of prehistoric pottery and a flint flake in its upper fill. Next to this was an undated pit. The other pit contained two fills, the upper fill was charcoal-rich and contained three pieces of pottery from the same vessel, Late Neolithic to earlier Middle Bronze Age date, as well as some daub.

The Medieval period was represented by structure type features. A narrow gully contained two sherds of 12th-13th century pottery and was adjacent to a group of five postholes/stakeholes which appeared contemporary and were backfilled at the same time as the gully. To the south of this group was a scatter of six postholes and a pit or ditch terminus. One of the postholes had cobbles at the base and contained 1 sherd of Roman date, another post hole contained a small quantity of medieval pottery 12th-13th century. In addition, a ditch and a pit both containing one sherd of 12th-13th century pottery were revealed. Two iron knife blades were recovered from this pit.

The evaluation confirmed the presence of the 19th century field boundary shown on the geophysical survey and historical maps. In addition, the presence of the filled-in pond identified by the geophysical survey was confirmed, it was possibly dug originally for clay extraction. Two post-medieval gullies and two further post-medieval parallel ditches were also uncovered.
Undated features included two pits, two postholes and two ditches, however on of the ditches contained two sherds of Roman pottery in its main fill and iron nails in its upper fill (S2).

2019: Phase 2 evaluation to investigate the extent of previously identified archaeological remains found during the 2016 evaluation. No further evidence of prehistoric land use was identified during this phase.

The Roman period was represented by ditches and pits, with one large ditch containing the majority of the Roman pottery of 1st Century AD pit containing 34 sherds of Early Roman pottery. Two undated ovens or hearths which contained oak charcoal were identified, however no datable artefacts were found in associated. Based on a similar feature recorded in the vicinity these may be of a Roman date, however a prehistoric or medieval date cannot be ruled out for the features.

The Medieval periods was represented by features within the southwest of the site, comprising three large postholes, a short gully and a large pit or ditch terminus. A small assemblage of pottery of 12th to 13th century date was recovered from the features. These are likely associated with the possible structural type features of similar date recorded during the previous evaluation phase.
The post-medieval to modern periods was represented by the majority of the recorded ditches of field boundaries, directly correlating with those depicted on the 1837 tithe map and subsequent Ordnance survey mapping until the mid 1960s.

Undated features included two possible postholes and a gully which are potentially of natural origin and a small cluster of pits or postholes which were devoid an artefactual evidence (S3).

2021: An archaeological excavation was carried out on land east of Longfield Road in advance of a proposed evaluation. This formed the fourth phased of archaeological field work and comprised three open areas revealed features of prehistoric, Roman and Post-Medieval period within the areas at the south end of the site. The prehistoric period was represented by 2 small pits of possible middle Bronze Age to Middle Iron Age Date with six residual sherds of Early to Middle Iron Age pottery being revered.

The Roman period was represented by a larger, partially ditched enclosure with an enclosing ditch 4.5m wide and 1m deep. Within the enclosure shallow gullies and a scatter of several pits were identified. Outside the enclosure four ditches of a possible track or irregular field boundary was observed. A possible refuse pit and a small cooking pit were identified.

The medieval occupation of the site indicated a brief period spread over three phases of activity between the 12th to early 13th century. This was represented by a sequence of intercutting ditches including a ditched enclosure and scatters of small pits and postholes dated by pottery to the 12th to early 13th centuries. The features indicated a shifting patter of enclosures or field boundaries associated with a short lived medieval farmstead or settlement. No definite indications of buildings or structures were observed.

The final phased of the site related to the late medieval to post medieval period represented by field boundary ditches, pits and postholes and a former track, part of Butcher’s Lane. Running along the southern boundary of the site (S4).

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <S1> Unpublished document: Gater, J.. 2016. Geophysical Survey Report: Land east of Longfiled Road, Capel St. Mary, Suffolk.
  • <S2> Unpublished document: Clover, K.. 2016. Archaeological Evaluation, Land to the east of Longfield Road, Capel St Mary.
  • <S3> Unpublished document: Carvey, C.. 2019. Archaeological Evaluation - Phase 2, Land east of Longfield Lane, Capel St. Mary.
  • <S4> Unpublished document: Heard, K.. 2021. Archaeological Evaluation - Land East of Longfield Road, Capel St.Mary Archive Report.

Finds (27)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (4)

Record last edited

Sep 23 2022 10:07AM

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