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Burial at Ferry Meadows

In order to free up archive space at Peterborough Museum the NVAT organised the re-burial of ‘surplus’ archaeological material from the excavated assemblage derived from the site at Lynch Farm 2, Orton Longueville, Peterborough.

As with all museums space for long-term storage is at a premium, and Peterborough is no exception particularly in relation to the large quantities of ceramics which come from excavations on Roman sites in the area.

Material that was considered to be of no further archaeological value from the excavations carried out on the Iron Age and Roman site within Ferry Meadows Country Park was re-buried within the area of the former excavated site in September 2020.

The material comprised Roman pottery body sherds, pottery from topsoil contexts and ‘sorted’ pottery from contexts with a large pottery assemblage, but which had no diagnostic value in interpreting the site.

The deposition followed a ‘discards policy’ programme, based on a set of protocols developed at Peterborough Museum, where the material was former held.

The site has been fully published in East Anglian Archaeology as volume 163:

The re-buried material was bagged in black plastic bags and placed in a hole 1.5m x 1.5m x 1.5m, full details of which, and other references, have been recorded on the local HER.

The re-burial was organised by the Nene Valley Archaeological Trust through the good offices of the Nene Park Trust (NPT). Particular thanks are due to Adrian Oates and Chris Park of the NPT for arranging for this work to be carried out within the area of the park and for providing machinery.

The burial site is outside of the area of the Scheduled Monument (PE182). Consent was granted by Dr Will Fletcher of Historic England for this work to proceed. Thanks are due to Dr Rebecca Cassa Hatton of Peterborough City Council Planning department (Archaeology) for providing useful comment regarding details of the Event and its numbering.

During the course of digging the hole, we had an unexpected find, which is shown here.

Many thanks to Nina Crummy for the following comments:

"Copper-alloy. Late Roman. Devolved snake's head-terminals. Made for an adult but then adapted to fit a young sub-adult/child. Odd to find a complete bracelet in such good condition on its own. I'd normally expect something like that to be from an inhumation"

The object does not come from a stratified deposit, and was presumably disturbed from its original position by the large-scale earth moving which preceded the excavations.


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