Staff from our Newark office have unearthed some exciting archaeology at a new industrial development at Dove Valley Park in Derbyshire, working on behalf of Orion Heritage and Clowes Developments (UK) Ltd.
Cropmarks on aerial photographs hinted at the presence of several ring ditches and linear ditches on and close to the site. Our team confirmed the existence of these features through trial trench evaluation. We then conducted a strip, map and sample excavation to fully reveal and investigate the remains, leading to the discovery of a complete ring ditch and a substantial linear ditch.
The ring ditch during excavation, with a possible entrance visible in the foreground. There was at least one re-cutting of the ring ditch, suggesting maintenance and possible longevity of use.
The ring ditch is thought to be prehistoric, one nearby was excavated in the 1990s and found to be Bronze Age. The feature may have been a stock enclosure since no artefacts were found within it. However, soil samples were retained for potential radiocarbon dating and to recover small artefacts and environmental evidence and we’re looking forward to the results of our post-excavation work.
The long linear ditch is thought to be a post-medieval boundary. These discoveries add to our understanding of the area’s rich history and provides fascinating insights into the way our ancestors lived and worked.
Orthophoto showing the post-medieval boundary ditch running west–east to the north of the ring ditch.