|23 October 1999
English Iron Age fort discovered
An Iron Age fort has been discovered in the heart of a huge housing estate in Valley Park at Chandler's Ford (England).
Archaeological excavations in Zionshill Copse have unearthed bone and pottery dating from between 400 to 50 years BCE. That means the Valley Park site forms the remains of a middle Iron Age sub-rectangular settlement which was constructed at a comparable time with the famous Danebury Hill Fort on the outskirts of Stockbridge, near Winchester.
The system of ditches and banks was discovered during an archaeological earthwork survey of Valley Park woodlands, west of Knightwood Road, at the end of last year.
Dr Roy Entwhistle of Berkshire Archaeological Services was commissioned to undertake recent excavations to establish whether it dated from the Iron Age or was the remains of a medieval hunting lodge.
Local councillor Alan Dowden said: "An Iron Age settlement in Valley Park has officially been established. It is about 100 by 120 metres. It is right in the woodland and, obviously, there is general public access. They are going to have to do a lot more work now."
A Test Valley Council spokesperson said: "The preservation condition of the site is excellent and the evidence that has been produced indicates an important site".
Source: Southern Daily Echo (15 october 99)
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