South Cadbury Environs Project

Middle Iron Age

A key objective of SCEP was to test claims that there was little, if any, extramural settlement close to the developed hillfort. This lack was first noted in the report of survey work around Maiden Castle (Sharples 1991), a year before SCEP was founded. Similar observations were made on publication of the Danebury Environs Programme (Cunliffe 2000).

Test pit distribution map showing Middle Iron Age activity

Test pit evidence for Middle Iron Age activity

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The crucial datable finds for SCEP were crushed shell tempered sherds from generally undecorated straight sided and gently curved saucepan pots and jars. The effort paid off as the concentrations of such pottery show. It is notable that core foci since the earlier Bronze Age persist in localities 2, 4 and 5. A concentration in the south of locality 1 appears to represent a first phase of intensified settlement there but the most substantial new development, in the north west of locality 3, barely registered in the test pits and was only revealed on excavation of targeted geophysical anomalies.

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