Monument record SPT 001 - Devil's Wood Pit, Sproughton, (Palaeolithic-Mesolithic)

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Long blade industry, Terminal Upper Palaeolithic assemblages. Also Late Middle Palaeolithic Handaxe and Mesolithic Assemblage.


Grid reference Centred TM 1337 4440 (289m by 292m) (Centred on)
Map sheet TM14SW


Type and Period (3)

Full Description

1943/1944: Blades found at Chantry Lock by HEP Spencer, (S1, S8, S10).

1972: Excavation by John Wymer: Long blade industry, Terminal Upper Palaolithic assemblage. Thousands of blades, cores, backed blades, gravers. Affinities with general Upper Palaeolithic traditions of Europe. Site situated on surface of a sand and gravel filled former channel of the River Gipping. Lay beneath marsh clay and buried soil. Raw materials from elsewhere, suggested "Camping Site". First discovery of such an industry in Britain in any quantity or in a useful context. Two shallow pits associated. Also Mesolithic material including cores, blades, two scalene triangles, unretouched blades and flakes, scrapers, microliths. Excavated beneath marshy clay in humified sand. Fresh unpatinated. (S2-S4, S6-S8, S10, S11)

1973:Wymer (1985) mentions that one small rolled handaxe made on a flake of Bout coupé form, picked up in tipped gravel from this pit discovered in 1973, (S3, S9, S12)

1974: Bone and antler barbed points found in spoil. TM 1337 4433 Antler barbed point, approx to Star Carr Group C (S1,S5). TM 1343 4442 Bone barbed point (S1,S5).

C14 dates on organic material from buried channel associated with points gave 9690 and 7930 BC. Suggested that 10m of gravel accumulated in channel between circa 9750 and 8000 BC, dating based on Radio Carbon and pollen analysis. Zone 3 of late glacial and perhaps into zone 4 (pre-boreal) of post-glacial.

1974: TM 1335 4450 Residual Palaeolithic and Mesolithic material from SAU/1974 site, (S13)

2011: Excavation by Waghorne, Long blades found. (S14)

See also Neolithic, Bronze Age and Roman records

Site quarried away.

Excavation file with J Wymer in November 1988 (S2).

Sources/Archives (16)

  • <S1> Index: Ipswich Museum. IPSMG card. IPSMG, cards 966-126, 1972-145, 1974-30 A & B.
  • <S1> Index: Ipswich Museum. IPSMG card. 1972-145, 1972, 1943-119.2, 1943.
  • <S2> Excavation archive: Wymer, J.J.. 1988. JJ Wymer Excavation Archive. Wymer J J, November 1988.
  • <S3> Bibliographic reference: Wymer, J.J.. 1985. Palaeolithic Sites of East Anglia. p208.
  • <S4> Article in serial: Wymer, J.J.. 1976. A long blade industry from Sproughton.
  • <S5> Article in serial: Wymer J J,. 1975. Mesolithic barbed points from Sproughton. Wymer J, Barbed Points, Ill, EAA, 1, 1975, 1-14.
  • <S6> Index: OS. OS Card. OS, card TM14SW31,37.
  • <S7> Bibliographic reference: Billington, L, P.. 2016. Lithic Scatters and Landscape Occupation in the Late Upper Palaeolithic and Mesolithic: A Case Study from Eastern England.. M 1165, P 222, P 223, P 224.
  • <S8> Digital archive: Jacobi, R.. 2014. Palaeolithic and Mesolithic Lithic Artefact (PaMELA) database. 11586, 330, 329, 3730, 3732, 3733.
  • <S9> Digital archive: Wymer, J.J.. 1999. The Lower Palaeolithic Occupation of Britain (TERPs) The Lower Palaeolithic Occupation of Britain (TERPS). 22734.
  • <S10> Bibliographic reference: Wymer, J.J. & Bonsall, C.J.. 1977. Gazetteer of Mesolithic sites in England and Wales, CBA Research Report 20. 263, 431.
  • <S11> Article in serial: Owles, E.. 1972. Archaeology in Suffolk, 1972.
  • <S12> Unpublished document: Cutler, Hannah. 2013. Understanding Late Middle Palaeolithic Neandertal Landscape-use during Short-Term Occupations in Britain.
  • <S13> Article in serial: Owles, E. J.. 1974. Archaeology in Suffolk, 1974. XXXIII.2, pp. 212–224..
  • <S14> Bibliographic reference: Waghorne, R. S.. 2011. Rapid Climate Change during the late glacial in Southern England: a Multi Proxy Stuy of Sproughton, Suffolk.
  • <S15> Digital archive: Historic England. National Record Of the Historic Environment.

Finds (24)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (7)

Record last edited

Jun 7 2021 12:27PM

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