Neolithic, Iron Age and Romano-British activity at the former MOD Headquarters, Durrington, Wiltshire
By Steve Thompson and Andrew B. Powell
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Excavation at the former MOD headquarters, Durrington, just outside the Stonehenge World Heritage Site, revealed two prehistoric linear landscape features close to the floor of the River Avon valley.
One comprised two intersecting Late Neolithic posthole alignments which were closely associated with a group of Grooved Ware pits and with the utilisation of natural hollows for flint knapping and, in one hollow, for cremation burial.
The other was a substantial Late Iron Age defensive ditch, apparently enclosing a large area of the valley floor, in which the only evidence for earlier Iron Age activity was a smaller number of Middle Iron Age burials. It may be compared to other defended enclosures in the Avon valley, and more widely in the region.
The ditch was infilled at the start of the Roman period, and a settlement established between it and the river, divided by series field ditches and accessed by a trackway crossing the former boundary. Although no structures were identified, storage pits, ovens, pottery kilns and areas of quarrying indicate settlement in the immediate vicinity.
This report explores the archaeological remains within a framework of radiocarbon dating; specialist analyses of finds and environmental remains are also presented.