Watching brief by N Randall of SCAU during geotechnical works. The exercise was limited and no features of archaeological significance were encountered, although the recovery of a small number of possible Neolithic flints was suggestive of activity of this period in the area.
Evaluation by R Lambert of SCAU. Two tree hollows, a cluster of large postholes, and a series of colluvial deposits containing notable quantities of flintwork and pottery of Neolithic/Bronze Age date, was revealed.
Excavation by T Munnery of ASE of two of seven identified areas (SMS1 and WB6) highlighted as being of archaeological significance following evaluation (SyAC 94, 364).
Excavation by A Haslam of PCA of 1m2 test pits across a colluvial deposit that covered the site, and previously identified during a programme of evaluation (SyAC 99, 218), produced c 7000 pieces of Mesolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age and Iron Age struck flint. The bulk of the assemblage dated from the later Bronze Age to the Iron Age and may derive from middening practices spanning those periods. Although redeposited, the flint assemblage clearly represents all stages in the reduction process, from the preparation of raw materials through to the manufacture, use and discard of tools.
Watching brief by J Condliffe of WA. To the east of Whitehill Lane, a series of eleven postholes on an east–west alignment associated with a large quantity of ceramic building material was identified. This north-west corner of the field is shown on OS maps up to 1897 as being a brick quarry and the posthole alignment probably indicates the line of the boundary fence that surrounded it. To the west of Whitehill Lane, a pit cut by a large posthole was revealed. Each feature contained two sherds of highly abraded Iron Age pottery.
Evaluation and watching brief by L McCaig and D Britchfield of WA. The test pits were excavated to identify the depth of subsoil across the route of the proposed pipeline and so inform a strategy for the preservation in situ of potential archaeological deposits. The development proposal was subsequently designed to avoid impact on the archaeological horizons within the area of the easement that covered the majority of the development area, and truncation of the archaeological horizons was confined to the excavation of the narrow pipe trench.
Evaluation by N Randall of SCAU recorded an undated pit, possibly an earth oven, and two unstratified flint cores of Mesolithic or Neolithic date. Across the centre of the site were large areas of ground disturbance that probably related to the 20th century use of the site as military barracks, and the impact of a railway line that traversed the site during the inter-war period.
Evaluation and excavation by C Ellis of COT followed initial evaluation of the site by AOC in 2006 (SyAC 94, 368). The work revealed that large parts of the site had been subject to extensive modern disturbance but excavation in two areas revealed evidence of activity from the Mesolithic, Neolithic/Bronze Age, Iron Age, Roman, medieval and post-medieval periods. The Mesolithic was represented by residual worked flint artefacts from later features.
Evaluation by C Ellis for COT recovered a Mesolithic/Early Neolithic blade from a tree-throw hole and a residual Neolithic/Bronze Age core. A probable boundary ditch and posthole, which were undated but characteristically post-medieval, were also revealed.
Evaluation and subsequent excavation by W Weller of SCAU produced residual Mesolithic and Neolithic flintwork and a potential Bronze Age ditch terminal. An intensive period of activity began in the Middle Iron Age and extended into the early 2nd century AD, with a series of boundary or enclosure ditches and pits dominating the excavated area. The ditches may have formed a rectangular enclosure or field boundaries associated with a central domestic enclosure of a previously, partially recorded farmstead.