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25 November 2015
Bronze Age enclosure discovered in Devon

Tithebarn Green, Redhayes, Exeter (UK) is an area or rural Devon which has been ear marked for a development of up to 930 dwellings, under the watchful eye of CPRE Devon (Campaign to Protect Rural England). Under the terms of the permitted development Devon Country Council requires that the developer carries out detailed archaeological investigations before any works are begun.
     This site was of particular interest as it was believed to have been a settlement since Neolithic times with occupation stretching up to Anglo Saxon settlements. The investigations were conducted by a team from Cotswold Archaeology and they began with a geophysical survey followed up by trial trenches.
     Richard Greatorix, Principal Fieldwork Manager, is quoted as saying "We have identified a Bronze Age enclosure with a two metre deep ditch. These enclosures are a bit of a mystery in that they don't appear to be defensive as there are no stores or homes within them but they look far too large to be simply for retaining livestock. We have found remains of up to 70 burials within the enclosure which we believe to be from late Roman or post Roman British/ Anglo Saxon period. We have also found a number of furnaces or corn dryers used to dry a variety of cereals and several additional Bronze Age ditches as well as later post medieval ones. The site has clearly been in use for a long time".
     here is still a considerable amount of work to do, to identify everything found, but it is hoped to produce a report and set out a public display of the findings early next year.

Edited from Exeter Daily (19 October 2015)

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