Dig 3 – Test-pit 2 results revealed

Moving on, Test-pit 2 was dug in the grounds of the Mill House at the western end of the hamlet. The pit was located in a small area of rough grassland close to the frontage with Webbs Road. Historic maps dating back to the late 19th century show no activity in the immediate vicinity of the pit but the Mill House itself is of late medieval date with 17th century additions; whilst other buildings on the property date to the 18th and 19th centuries. The neighbouring property to the east is nos. 48 and 50 Streetly End, one of a pair of late 17th or early 18th century semi-detached timber-framed cottages.

Test-pit 2 being excavated in 2016, with the Mill House and windmill in the background.

The excavation team successfully dug the pit down to 60cm, reaching the natural clay at the bottom. The archaeology comprised 10cm of turf covering 30cm of topsoil and 20cm of subsoil (check out the 3D model below).

Finds include a large quantity of pottery, with some clay pipe, glass, animal bone and metalwork. Most of the pottery in the topsoil dates to the 16th century or later, consistent with occupation of the buildings that still surround the test-pit. However, it was noticeable that the subsoil only produced medieval pottery (mostly of 12th to 14th century date), including some possible late Anglo-Saxon fabrics dating to the 11th century, and it appears to be an undisturbed soil level containing evidence of occupation that is much earlier than previously known on the site. The topsoil in the pit also produced a small quantity of iron slag, suggesting metalworking was probably taking place in the vicinity at some point in the past.

Subsoil in Test-pit 2 only produced medieval pottery (left), whilst the topsoil produced pottery dating from the 16th century through to the present day (right).

You can explore the test-pit by checking out the 3D model below. Click play to activate. Once it has loaded, click and hold the left mouse button to rotate the model. Use the scroll wheel to zoom and the right mouse button to move the model. Switch to full-screen mode for the annotations.

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