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Investigation of the Archaeological Landscape at Broom, Bedfordshire: The Plant Site and Phases 1 & 2



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Mortimer, Richard 


The initial phase of excavation at Brom Quarry covered an area of 53 hectares across the northern part of the quarry – the Plant Site and Phases 1& .2 The archaeology so far revealed represents the period from the Early Bronze Age (c.1800 - 1600 BC) through to the Middle Iron Age (c.400 – 100 BC). The earlier Bronze Age phases show a landscape composed of funerary and boundary features upon which late Bronze Age and early Iron Age settlement features increasingly encroached. The dominant feature, an early Bronze Age barrow, became the focus for a Middle or Later Age double-ditched boundary nearly half a kilometre in length, and for contemporary burials and ritual deposits. The later settlement activity acknowledges these earlier features, as both boundaries and/or burial places. The eastern half of the barrow ditch was infilled (by re-deposition of the external bank) and cremations were placed within it, the western half remained to be incorporated into the settlement boundary. At the south-east of the barrow, and as part of the extended boundary, were two groups of large circular storage pits, some of which contained deliberately placed deposits of animal bone. These pits, and other elements of the Iron Age settlement, had been preserved beneath a headland road and were thus masked from air reconnaissance. No features of later date were identified beyond a system of Post-Medieval field ditches, which, in the main area of excavation, were aligned on the north-south headland road which bisected the site.



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Cambridge Archaeological Unit, Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge

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