Thursday, 3 July 2008

Iron Age settlement found at Shadoxhurst, nr. Ashford, Kent


The remains of an Iron Age settlement have been uncovered by workers preparing to lay a water pipe in Kent.

Evidence of a roundhouse, five buried cremation urns and a large amount of pottery was discovered at Shadoxhurst, near Ashford.

Construction on the final section of a South East Water pipeline between Bewl Reservoir, Sussex, and Ashford has been halted to allow further investigations.

Archaeologists will now record and preserve the ancient finds.

They estimate the roundhouse would have been about 10m in diameter with timber supports. The walls and roof would have been made with wattle and daub.

'Rich history'

The period known as the Iron Age took place in Britain between about 750BC and about AD40.

Tim Allen, from Kent Archaeological Projects, said: "Although the east of Kent has a rich Iron Age history there has been little evidence previously in this area of the Weald.

"We are grateful to South East Water for the seriousness they take when it comes to our archaeological heritage and their efforts to advance our knowledge of the history of the county."

Engineering manager Paul Clifford said: "This exciting find has emerged during the initial pipeline excavation work, and after we carried out extensive archaeology surveys of the entire route before construction.

"On large schemes such as this we take the extra precaution of having archaeologists working alongside our contractors to ensure that if we do find anything of historical significance, then we can halt work for further investigations.

"That ensures we can continue to protect and record our ancient heritage."

Full story here.

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