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Thames Valley Archaeological Services Monograph: Volume 24

Bronze Age, Saxon and Medieval Evidence from Wantage, Oxfordshire: Excavations at St Mary’s and St Gabriel’s Schools

by James Lewis

Monograph 24 cover

Archaeological excavations close to the modern town centre of Wantage revealed a dense complex of mostly medieval features on two large parcels of land, thought to lie within the town as it was in late medieval times. The continuous occupation sequence, however, commenced in the late Saxon period with the construction of a circular or oval enclosure, various small enclosures, pens, buildings, workshops and other features and a substantial boundary ditch to the south. Finds include pottery suggesting a high status centre, supporting the view of Wantage as a Saxon royal estate. Medieval activity expanded in the 11th century with further redefinition and reorganisation which continued until the 13th or 14th century when all this activity ceased. Subsequent use of the sites was light, expect for re-cutting of the boundary ditch well into the 16th century.

The earliest finds and features were of prehistoric date with a few struck flints of Mesolithic and later date, but notably an urned cremation cemetery of Middle Bronze Age date with one urned burial radiocarbon dated to 1403-1268 BC. Early and Middle Saxon finds and deposits were few but included an inhumation burial dated to AD 775-887. Yet the range of pottery included high status vessels and whilst the focus of a contemporary settlement has not yet been revealed it is possible that the villa regia documented by AD849 lies close by. Finally, the area was orchard and fields in the 18th and 19th centuries

A4 soft cover, 49pp, illustrated throughout including 10 colour plates:
ISBN 978-1-911228-00-4.

Price: £10.00

Monographs

Newest Volumes: Our latest additions to the TVAS Monograph Series

Volume 1: Charnham Lane, Hungerford, Berkshire

Volume 2: Prehistoric, Roman and Saxon Sites in Eastern Berkshire

Volume 3: Excavations at Cippenham, Slough, Berkshire

Volume 4: Bronze Age, Roman and Saxon sites on Shrubsoles Hill, Sheppey and at Wises Lane, Borden, Kent

Volume 5: The Archaeology of the Aylesbury-Chalgrove gas pipeline and the Orchard, Walton Road, Aylesbury

Volume 6: Iron Age and Roman settlement and landscape at Totterdown Lane, Horcott near Fairford, Gloucestershire

Volume 7: Reading and Windsor: Old and New; Excavations 1995–2002

Volume 8: Excavations in Medieval Abingdon and Drayton, Oxfordshire

Volume 9: Archaeological Investigations in the Silchester Hinterland

Volume 10: Archaeological Investigations in Wallingford, Oxfordshire, 1992-2010

Volume 11: Archaeological Investigations in Surrey, 1997-2009

Volume 12: Archaeological Investigations along the line of Ermin Street in West Berkshire, 1992-2008

Volume 13: Archaeological Investigations to the south of Reading, 2002-2008

Volume 14: Settlement and Landscape Archaeology in the Middle Thames Valley: Slough and Environs

Volume 15: Bronze Age and Roman settlement, with Neolithic and Saxon burials, at Itchen Farm, Winchester, Hampshire

Volume 16: Iron Age Iron Production Sites in Berkshire

Volume 17: The Oxford Henge and Late Saxon Massacre; with Medieval and Later Occupation at St John's College, Oxford

Volume 18: Neolithic, Roman and Saxon Settlement at Arlington Way, Thetford, Norfolk

Volume 19: Bronze Age, Iron Age and Roman Landscapes of the Coastal Plain, and a Late Iron Age Warrior Burial at North Bersted, Bognor Regis, West Sussex; Excavations 2007-2010

Volume 20: Archaeological Excavations at Roundhouse Farm, Marston Meysey, Wiltshire

Volume 21: An Iron Age Round House and Roman Villa at Chilton Fields, Oxfordshire

Volume 22: Roman Occupation at Chapel Farm, Blunsden, Swindon, Wiltshire (Lower Widhill Farm)

Volume 23: Archaeological excavations at Latton Quarry, Wiltshire

Volume 24: Bronze Age, Saxon and Medieval Evidence from Wantage, Oxfordshire: Excavations at St Mary’s and St Gabriel’s Schools

Volume 25: Neolithic, Bronze Age, Roman and Anglo-Saxon Occupation and Bronze Age Burial at Ibsley Quarry, Ibsley, Ringwood, Hampshire

Volume 26: Two Iron Age Occupation Sites on Andover Road and Cromwell Road in Winchester

Volume 27: A Bronze Age Ring Ditch and Anglo-Saxon Cemetery at Story's Meadow, Marland Land, West Meon, Hampshire