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1 August 2009
Findings of hill fort project unveiled in Buckinghamshire

The findings of a major three year long archaeological project examining Iron Age hill forts were put on display at Danesfield Hotel, Henley Road, Marlow (Buckinghamshire, England). An information board detailing the finds of the Danesfield site was unveiled by Sandy Kidd, senior archaeologist and Buckinghamshire County Councillor Bob Woollard. It followed the unveiling of the first panel - at the Medmenham Iron Age hill fort - which was put on display a week earlier by Wycombe MP Paul Goodman.
     A group of time detectives researched and surveyed a number of sites up to 3,000 years old around Marlow. The Recording Of Marlow And District's Ancient Monuments scheme (ROMADAM) was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. A fence between Danesfield House and SAS UK divides the remains of the historic horse-shoe shaped fort in two. AIM spokesman John Laker said: "A quarter of the fort was removed when Danesfield House was originally built and the present hotel complex lies across the western section of the Hill Fort. The southern side of the Hill Fort's defences was completed by a chalk cliff which towers above the River Thames below. The southern section, known as 'The Cascades', has a spring which flows into a valley and runs down to the Thames."
     There are hill forts scattered all over Britain which were first built in the late Bronze Age around 1,000 BCE. They are thought to have been used to protect settlements and cattle, store grain and may even have been the high status homes for tribal chiefs and their families. The Danesfield site was taken over by the RAF from 1941 until 1977. For more information or to join the digs currently going on in Happy Valley contact John Laker by email on johnlaker@thamesinternet.com or call 01628 481792.

Source: Bucks Free Press (29 July 2009)

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