We had the most glorious weather excavating at Avebury in the summer with the Living with Monuments Project team (ignoring one day of tremendous downpours). Site Directors, Profs. Josh Pollard (University of Southampton) and Mark Gillings (University of Leicester) led the three-week dig in July/August to the west of Avebury Henge.
Looking south to Silbury Hill (just to the left tucked away behind the trees) ©National Trust/Nicola Snashall
Why dig there?
Over the last decade there have been excavations in and around Avebury which have helped us better understand the landscape in certain areas. Last year we excavated a large flint scatter a mile east of Avebury Henge as part of the Foot of Avebury Down dig (Interim Report). There have also been excavations along the West Kennet Avenue in recent years where the team gathered data of a Neolithic occupation site there (click here for more).
The floodplain of the Winterbourne to the west of Avebury Henge is less well understood. Previous work here uncovered medieval pits and ditches, parts of the post-medieval water meadow system, Neolithic and Mesolithic worked flint, and Neolithic pottery.
Here was an opportunity to better understand the nature of the Mesolithic to Early Bronze Age periods in this area and their extent between the Winterbourne and the henge monument.
Look out for tomorrow’s update where I’ll be talking about the Prehistoric archaeology from the dig…..
If you’ve been following our progress on the Living with Monuments Project you might like to take a look at the interim report for our 2017 excavations at the Foot of Avebury Down – Avebury_Down_2017_interim_report.