Beaulieu New Station, Chelmsford. An Archaeological Evaluation

Change log
Speariett, Lucia 

An archaeological evaluation was carried out on land to the northwest of Boreham Interchange, the A12 and the Great Eastern Main Line. The site is to the southeast of New Hall school the former Beaulieu Palace, a site that was greatly added to a remodelled by Henry VIII. The evaluation comprised 35 trenches covering a total of 1055m in length and were almost completely void of archaeology. Four features were recorded including a modern ditch terminus, two undated discrete features and a natural anomaly. The PDA is within an area of moderate archaeological activity with a number of nearby sites of different date. Of particular note is the palace to the north-west and The Avenue to the west. However, the site was thought to be of low potential because of the lack of cropmarks or lidar anomalies. The trenching program has confirmed a low level of activity across the site. Of the four recorded features, two have been undated, one dated to the modern period and one is geological. Setting the site within its landscape, the PDA is clearly within the viewshed of 'New Hall School' the Henry VIII palace (NHLE 1338404) and immediately adjacent to the associated listed avenue (NHLE 1000207). Although this area has been recently ploughed; the shallow depth, in conjunction with the lack of features suggests there has not been a long history of ploughing. This ties in with the landscaping of the gardens and parks of the Hall and suggests that this area, beyond the formal gardens was reserved only for pasture, and kept clear of any structures, creating an idealised view. The PDA is void of dateable archaeological features, supported by the lack of material, and consistent with the site’s role within the larger landscape of New Hall and its parks and gardens.

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