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Neolithic discoveries from Middlebeck development site, Newark

Archaeological artefacts of national significance, dating back to the Neolithic period, have been uncovered at the site of a major housing project.

Developers Urban&Civic invited a team of experts from Oxford Archaeology North to lead extensive excavations at the site of its Middlebeck development in Newark.

The company also asked local community and history groups, including the Newark and Nottingham Young Archaeologist Clubs and Farndon Archaeological Research Investigations, to undertake excavation visits.

More than 3,000 homes are to be built to the west and east of Bowbridge Lane.

Finds by the Oxford Archaeo-logy team, led by Dr Adam Tinsley, were from as far back as the early Neolithic Age from 4,000 to 3,500BC.

Despite Newark’s rich history, the team admitted it was not expecting to make the finds it had done so far.

They are believed to be some of the most significant in the country and indicate an intensely occupied landscape over a long time period.

The finds include Romano-British period pottery kilns; the remains of numerous round houses relating to Iron Age or even earlier occupation; an early Neolithic axe; a decorated jet stone artefact from the Bronze Age; and a potential late Neolithic/early Bronze Age henge (monument consisting of a circle of stone or wooden uprights) and cremation cemetery dating to around 2,500-1,500BC.

More work will be done to pin down and refine the dating of the site and draw out further details of the sequence of development.

The findings have been recorded and preserved by the archaeological team, paving the way for work on the Middlebeck development to continue.

All text from the article at the Newark Advertiser

Oxford Archaeology North main website

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