Rectory Farm, West Deeping
There was a rare opportunity for a little digging last month. At the invitation of gravel extraction company, Breedon, volunteers participated in an induction day at the Rectory Farm site near West Deeping.
The gravel extraction in the area is inevitably removing the archaeological record but equally there is a unique opportunity to capture and document evidence of prehistoric occupation of large areas of the Welland valley. This is primarily being done by commercial archaeology companies – in this case PCAS.
The Rectory Farm site is known to include a succession of features dating from the late Neolithic / early Bronze Age through to the late Roman period. The section to be explored next year will include areas where settlement was apparent in the geophysics.
Breedon want to publicise the archaeological research being undertaken and to involve the local community. They see opportunities to arrange a programme of visits by schools etc next year. To this end the induction day was aimed at building a small team of volunteers who have some familiarity with the site and who are able to explain methods, features and finds to visitors.
The outreach project is being led by Ian Meadows. On 2nd October we braved the nearing storm and undertook some real hands-on archaeology. We cleaned the gravel surface to highlight a network of pits and ditches. We went on to dig sections through these features. More educational than archaeological discovery but enjoyable none the less.
When available, we will bring you news of reports arising from this work – and about the outreach project next year.