Hengrove Farm, Staines

Excavation by J Robertson of SCAU in advance of continuing mineral extraction following work undertaken on the quarry site between 1999 and 2006. The work produced features and finds of many periods. Three tree-throw holes were identified that included Mesolithic flintwork of primary deposition, while many of the other tree-throw holes produced pottery and flintwork of Neolithic date. A number of pits of Neolithic date were also excavated and, like the tree-throw holes, were quite widely scattered across the area. A waterhole produced an important assemblage of pottery and a large lithic assemblage of Late Neolithic date. A single feature was dated to the Early Bronze Age, and this included a Beaker sherd. The 2012 excavation revealed a similar range of settlement and boundary features of Middle to later Bronze Age date to that revealed during the earlier work. Of particular interest were ten Bronze Age waterholes, eight of which were located near the four corners of the excavation area and two more centrally, with a number of them producing important finds assemblages, most notably of pottery. Only a few features of Early Iron Age date were identified, perhaps effectively a continuation of the later Bronze Age activity. Very little pottery of Middle or Late Iron Age date was recovered, indicating that there was no settlement use of the site during the remainder of the 1st millennium BC. Similarly the small number of unstratified sherds of Roman pottery recovered during the soil stripping, and those residual in later features, suggest no more than the spread of material during manuring of fields. Four Saxon wells (waterholes) were found their discovery was something of a surprise given the absence of anything similar from previous work at Hengrove. Two of them produced relatively large assemblages of pottery, of Middle rather than Early or Late Saxon date. The features are towards the centre and in the far east, north and south of the site, and there is also a spread of unstratified or residual pottery across the area. This suggests that there may have been a relatively extensive area of settlement, most elements of which had relatively little below- ground impact. No significant features of later date were recovered.