The Camp, Ashtead Common, Ashtead

A test pit evaluation by W Weller of SCAU within the triangular earthwork known as ‘The Camp’, undertaken in response to an illegal metal detecting incident that uncovered three hammered bronze items, including a nearly intact bowl. A number of replaced ‘plugs’ resulting from the incident were identified and a 2m2 test pit was excavated around one of them, deemed the most plausible for the source of the items. A possible occupation layer, or perhaps the fill of a large feature extending beyond the excavation, was observed underlying the subsoil and both produced a range of datable finds, including objects related to domestic activity of a Middle–Late Iron Age date. No fragments of bronze were observed so it could not be confirmed that it was the location from which the bronze bowl and related items were recovered. The items are currently at the British Museum, who consider them undiagnostic as regards date. They have found no parallel for the bowl but if it is Late Iron Age, then it is probably an early Roman import. The boat-shaped object appears to have been crushed, rather than originally that shape.