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6 September 2010
Unearthing the secrets of an Iron Age settlement in England

Archaeologist Derek Hurst recently disclosed the secrets of a Iron-Age settlement near Bewdley (Worcestershire, England). His report, which has appeared in The Council for British Archaeology's online journal Internet Archaeology thanks to funding from English Heritage, charters the excavation of a site at Blackstone, which took place in the 1970s.
     It records how archaeologists discovered fragments of pottery indicating that at the time of the main Iron Age occupation from the 2nd century into the 1st century BCE, the dwellers operated sophisticated trading links. A substance called briquetage was also revealed. This coarse ceramic material was used in the process of extracting and trading salt, and its presence indicates strong ties with Droitwich Spa, which is famed worldwide for its historical salt production.
     Mr Hurst, senior project manager, said: "Not many pre-Roman sites have been excavated so it was really exciting to have the chance to work on this project which offers a snapshot into how our ancestors lived in the past." Judith Winters, Internet Archaeology editor, added: "This project serves as an example of how archaeological thinking and expression has changed in 40 years. And with publication costs being met by English Heritage, the article is now freely available online and will reach an audience way beyond it could ever have achieved in print." To read the report visit intarch.co.uk

Source: Halesowen news (4 September 2010)

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