UK dig discovers 9,000-year-old remains
|View of the excavation site at Great Western Park [Credit: Herald Series]|
The two-and-a-half-year dig has uncovered the remains of a Roman villa, and early Bronze Age arrowheads which will now go on display.
Rob Masefield – director of archaeology at RPS Planning, which is managing the investigation – said one of the most important discoveries was hundreds of flints dating back over 9,000 years to the Mesolithic period.
He said: “There might have been one or two finds from the Mesolithic period in the past but they have not been scientifically dated in such a significant way before – these were working flints used around campfires about 9,000 years ago.
|One of the flint arrowheads found at the dig [Credit: Herald Series]|
Oxford Archaeology project manager Steve Lawrence, who is based in Osney Mead, Oxford, added: “The site demonstrates about 1,000 years of continuous settlement.”
Key finds include Bronze Age arrowheads from a ceremonial pond barrow burial mound, and a piece of Roman pottery featuring a face design.
Investigations launched in 2011 unearthed early prehistoric finds including a complete Neolithic bowl of the earliest farmers, dating to about 3600 BC.
|Part of a pottery figure [Credit: Herald Series]|
The dig also located a large hillcrest Iron Age settlement, west of Stephen Freeman Primary School, with up to 60 roundhouses.
There were also hundreds of grain storage pits, human burials, domestic rubbish, pottery dumps and animal bones.
The Cornerstone Arts Centre in Didcot is staging an exhibition about the dig, from February 7 to March 3.
Author: Andrew Ffrench | Source: Herald Series [January 22, 2013]