Broadcast 24 February 2008
In July 2007 an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of Knave Hill, Stonton Wyville, Leicestershire (NGR 474190 293356), to investigate the existence of a possible Anglo-Saxon settlement site. This area had been previously identified by a systematic fieldwalking survey which recovered the largest concentration of Anglo-Saxon pottery identified by field walking in Leicestershire to date.
Geophysical survey and excavation identified a large ‘D’-shaped enclosure, which proved on excavation to date to the Late Iron Age to Romano-British period. Another possible enclosure was identified lying 120m to the east. In addition, excavation revealed two possible Anglo-Saxon post-built structures, suggesting that the Saxon settlement focus lies to the north-west of the ‘D’-shaped enclosure. This activity was not visible to the geophysical survey.
Dating evidence recovered was relatively limited (pottery and coins), and the Saxon pottery in particular is not susceptible to close dating; it is currently dated broadly as early/middle Anglo-Saxon (5th to 8th century AD). The date range of the RomanoBritish finds (pottery and coins) appears to span the period from 1st century AD (with some possible pre-conquest pottery) to 4th century AD, although continuity of activity throughout the period cannot be demonstrated, and the four late Romano-British coins recovered, three of which were perforated for suspension, could in fact have been collected and re-used during the Anglo-Saxon period.