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The Archaeology of Langwood Fen, Chatteris - A Desktop Study



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Evans, Christopher 


This desktop study, commissioned by ARC Ltd., evaluates the archaeological impact of the proposed re-activation of the c. 170ha Block Fen, Mepal Quarry (which actually lies in Langwood Fen, Chatteris). Apart from the actual area of the quarry itself (Zone I), this study extends to two further surrounding 'zones': II- A 'boxed' (developer-designated) c. 500m wide berm around the north, west and eastern sides of the quarry so as to evaluate the effects of de-watering. Ill - A further c 1km wide box so as to provide a sense of broader landscape context and allow for the identification of sites that might extend into Zone II but which may have evaded aerial photographic recognition. This area extends north to Vermuden's Drain and east of the Bedford Level (fig. 1). While no excavation has occurred within this immediate area, it has been extensively surveyed. It was recently fieldwalked by David Hall during the English Heritage Fenland Project, and he has made available to us all of his records. In conjunction with that project Roger Palmer has compiled and analysed the area's aerial photographic coverage, and he has provided a summary of his researches. Albeit in an intermittent and informal manner, since 1963 the area of Langwood Hill has been fieldwalked by local amateurs and, in recent years, extensively surveyed by a metal detector.



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Cambridge Archaeological Unit, Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge

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