Over the years we have worked on a diverse set of projects for a wide range of clients. Find out more about some of the exciting projects and discoveries. Use the filters to browse through the pages below.
DP World London Gateway has completed one of the largest dredging projects ever planned in the UK − to widen, deepen and in places re-route the existing commercial shipping channel in the Thames Estuary. Wessex Archaeology undertook extensive marine geophysics and targeted dive surveys to assess and record the archaeological remains along the dredge corridor.
Wessex Archaeology, as official supplier of archaeological and heritage services to the Olympic Delivery Authority, analysed and published the results of the archaeological and cultural heritage investigations at the Olympic Park – the site of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Undertaking work on marine heritage assets on behalf of Historic England, Cadw, Department of the Environment Northern Ireland and Historic Environment Scotland. This work has involved the archaeological assessment of many wreck sites, either to assess their significance as a precursor to possible scheduling, protection or designation, to undertake condition surveys or to re-assess sites.
Wessex Archaeology's Project SAMPHIRE (Scottish Atlantic Maritime Past: Heritage, Investigation, Research and Education) was a great success with over 100 new sites revealed and recorded through the innovative approach to community engagement. Project SAMPHIRE, which was funded by The Crown Estate Stewardship Fund, also won the prestigious European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra Awards 2017 in the Education, Training and Awareness-raising category which is a great honour for and a testament to the dedication and hard work of everyone involved.
Sherford is a new town being developed to the east of Plymouth, Devon, transforming over 1200 acres of farmland and rolling countryside. The project is providing a unique opportunity to mitigate the archaeological potential of South Devon
The National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) has the UK’s largest collection of naval vessels and artefacts, including internationally famous ships such as HMS Victory, HMS Warrior and HMS Caroline. Wessex Archaeology has worked closely with the NMRN as it expands to cover more historic naval vessels around the UK. Following on from our first project putting together the Conservation Management Plan for Nelson’s flagship HMS Victory, we have also completed CMPs and associated recording work for the WWI cruiser HMS Caroline, last survivor of the Battle of Jutland and the submarine HMS Alliance, as well as ongoing work for several other vessels within the NMRN family.
The Humber is one of the largest estuaries in Britain with a rich and nationally important archaeological, geological and palaeoenvironmental record. It has been, and still is, a significant transport, trade and communication route. For over 10 years Wessex Archaeology has supported E.ON Climate & Renewables UK Humber Wind Ltd and their consultants ERM on the scheme, before, during and after construction, offshore and onshore.
Between 1999 and 2007 Framework Archaeology, a joint venture between Wessex Archaeology and Oxford Archaeology, carried out major excavations in advance of the construction of Terminal 5 at Heathrow, on behalf of BAA. The results of the excavations were published in two monographs – which were accompanied by an innovative interactive digital archive.
HS2 is Europe’s largest infrastructure project. It includes the biggest track-building programme seen in the UK since the Victorian era. It also affords the opportunity for the country’s largest ever archaeological investigation. Wessex Archaeology has undertaken extensive geophysical survey work and is currently opening hundreds of evaluation trenches on the proposed route, to locate and assess the archaeological remains.
Horizon Nuclear Power (HNP) are constructing a replacement power station at Wylfa, in north-west Anglesey, and Wessex Archaeology has been working with them and their contractors, providing our expertise in Heritage, Archaeology and Geoservices, to identify important archaeological remains and mitigate any impacts prior to the development.
Our work undertaken at Area 430 highlights how a combination of desk-based assessments and protocols for archaeological discoveries can provide mitigation responses which benefit the protection of submerged cultural heritage.
Wessex Archaeology undertook evaluation and excavation work on a series of sites in advance of family housing being built as part of the Army Basing Programme. Discoveries included Neolithic henge monuments and a Saxon cemetery. Watch the video created with Phil harding.
Wessex Archaeology has been involved with Time Team from the very beginning through one of the programme’s best known characters, Phil Harding. In this section you can explore some of our work with Time Team, and find out what happens after the TV show.
The Amesbury Archer grave is of a man dating to around 2,300BC and was discovered three miles from Stonehenge by Wessex Archaeology staff in 2002. His grave was the richest ever found dating from the early Bronze Age found in Britain. He was found during excavation in advance of a housing development at Amesbury in Wiltshire, and the man was dubbed the “Amesbury Archer” or the “King of Stonehenge” by the media. He has featured on several radio and TV programmes, including the BBC2 Ancestors series.
Wessex Archaeology record of over 1,000 years of uninterrupted settlement has been discovered in a huge archaeological excavation across six square kilometres (almost two and a half square miles) near Cambridge.
A team of 35 archaeologists have worked on and off for seven years at the site at Cambourne, nine miles west of the city, in advance of the construction of a new settlement with 3,300 homes.
Wessex Archaeology was appointed to undertake excavation work in advance of the building Southampton Football Club’s new Friends Provident St Mary’s Stadium. They discovered an exceptionally rich Anglo-Saxon cemetery and found graves furnished with weapons, gold and fine gold jewellery.
Wessex Archaeology was commissioned by Millwood Designer Homes to excavate land at Cliffs End Farm, Ramsgate prior to housing development. The extraordinary finds made during the 2004-5 excavations have allowed archaeologists to rethink the movement of people between this part of Kent and Continental Europe during the Bronze Age and Iron Age.
In 2005 Southern Water Services commissioned Wessex Archaeology to carry out the excavation of archaeological remains along the route of two new pipelines. More than 650 finds and sites were recorded, most between Manston airfield and Weatherlees Wastewater Treatment Works during these works.
Springhead in Kent was Wessex Archaeology’s longest-running and most prolific excavation. Around 30 archaeologists spent more than two years working at the site, finding more than 150,000 objects, ranging from axe heads dating to 300,000BC to a small hoard of Medieval silver pennies. The site was described as ‘an archaeologist’s dream’.
Wessex Archaeology worked for Frogmore Developments Ltd on the archaeological excavation at 60 & 63 Fenchurch Street in the City of London EC3. The site was redeveloped to provide a prestigious new office building. The excavation revealed medieval and Roman remains and was completed in August 2002. All archaeological remains were removed from the site prior to construction of the new building.
During work at Christchurch Park, Ipswich, a medieval cemetery was found. The remains are probably part of the St Margaret’s church burial ground. The burials were found while a new drainage system for the park renovations was being dug.
The grave of the Boscombe Bowmen was discovered during the digging of a trench for a new water pipe in May 2003. When archaeologist Colin Kirby saw human bone and pottery dating to the Bronze Age pottery, he realised immediately that a grave had been disturbed.
It was soon clear that there was something unusual about the grave. There was not just one skeleton, there were also bones from several other people. It was also clear that while the water trench had cut down one side of the grave, a trench for an electricity cable had also cut across part of the grave. What had survived the electricity and water trenches was quite unexpected.
In the dark and fog of the night of Wednesday 21st February 1917, the ss Mendi was rammed by another ship. It was an accident, but with a deep gash in its side, the Mendi was doomed. She sank 25 minutes later and almost 650 men died. The wreck lies off The Isle of Wight, in the English Channel. In Britain the story of the SS Mendi is almost unknown. In South Africa she is famous; a symbol of a racist past and an icon of unity and reconciliation.
Marine Aggregate Industry Protocol for the Reporting of Finds of Archaeological Interest
Over the summer of 2004, the Port of London Authority worked with Wessex Archaeology to excavate and recover the bow and part of the side of a late 16th century merchant ship. The shipwreck was first located in April 2003 when the Port of London Authority was undertaking survey work in advance of dredging to deepen the Princes Channel to allow safe passage for the increasingly large ships using the Port.
Wessex Archaeology was commissioned in April 2003 to undertake the research project ‘Seabed Prehistory – gauging the effects of marine aggregate dredging’, funded by the Aggregate Levy Sustainability Fund (ALSF). The project demonstrated the scope for assessing prehistoric archaeology that has been covered by rising sea levels, and distributed the results via a series of reports, publications and a 3D animation.
Staff from Wessex Archaeology Sheffield are providing on-site supervision for the University of Sheffield’s training excavation at Manor Lodge, the site of the medieval and 16th century hunting lodge of Sheffield where Mary Queen of Scots spent part of her captivity in the custody of George Talbot, 6th Earl of Shrewsbury and his wife, Bess of Hardwick.
Wessex Archaeology's Heritage Team recorded the standing remains of the former Staybrite Works, manufacturers of stainless steel at Meadowhall in Sheffield. The site includes a huge steel framed rolling mill building and ancillary workshops and buildings, c. 1907. It is thought to be the earliest electrically driven stainless steel rolling mill in the UK and was part of the huge Firth Brown steelworks.
The character of the Romano-British rural economy in Cambridgeshire has been illuminated by the Priors Gate excavation at Eaton Socon, near St. Neots. The sequence of roundhouses, enclosures, watering holes and a droveway, spanning much of the Roman period, reflects the development, at its most basic and local level, of the Roman agrarian landscape.
Wessex Archaeology excavated the remains of a small Roman building were uncovered on the side of a narrow, steep-sided valley near North Wraxall in Wiltshire. The building, a bath-house, is a short distance from an imposing Roman villa, excavated in the mid 19th century. This project included a community excavation to find out as much as possible about the building and to conserve it for the future.
Collingbourne Ducis, Wiltshire: an Early Saxon cemetery with bed burial
Wessex Archaeology undertook mitigation work and published the result of its excavations at Collingbourne Ducis one of the largest Anglo-Saxon cemeteries in Wiltshire. Dating to between the 5th and 7th centuries AD, it was investigated in 1974 and, in 2007. In all over 120 burials were found.
For many years Wessex Archaeology has undertaken important research in the area around the World Heritage Site of Stonehenge. Between 1998 and 2003 we had a vital role in the development of proposals for the improvement of the road (A303) which passed through the middle of the site. Wessex Archaeology is currently assessing and recording the archaeology in advance of the proposed tunnel corridor near the site.
Kent County Council’s construction of a new road link, the second phase of the East Kent Access (EKA2), on the south side of the Isle of Thanet provided a rare opportunity for Wessex Archaeology to undertake large-scale investigations of this important archaeological landscape.
A team from Wessex Archaeology’s Sheffield office investigated the former Vulcan Iron Works site at Heanor Haulage, Langley Mill, in advance of a new supermarket development. The Vulcan Iron Works was constructed by G R Turner in 1874, the company mainly concentrating on the production of railway rolling stock.
Huddersfield Railway Station is widely held to be one of the finest classical stations in Britain and stands as a dominant reminder of the prosperity of the city's former textile industry. Constructed by two rival rail companies in 1850, the station contained separate ticket offices at either end of the building, with first and second class restrooms in between.
This former grain warehouse in Rotherham town centre is one of the few surviving 19th-century buildings on the Rotherham Cut of the Sheffield and South Yorkshire Navigation canal. It has been surveyed and photographed by our Sheffield Team on behalf of Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council, prior to its demolition to make way for a new railway station as part of the ‘Rotherham Renaissance’ programme.
Wessex Archaeology undertook a scheme of evaluation and mitigation on land at Countesthorpe, Leicestershire. The investigations revealed the remains of three urns, all heavily truncated as a result of medieval and later agricultural land-uses. Two of the urns contained the cremated human remains of two individuals, one adult male and a sub-adult.
On the site of the former MOD Headquarters in Durrington, a programme of archaeological excavation and watching brief (2000−2012) was undertaken by Wessex Archaeology ahead of the site being redeveloped into residential housing by Persimmon Homes South Coast. This revealed archaeological evidence spanning thousands of years and as far back as the last Ice Age.
Two separate phases of excavation were undertaken by Wessex Archaeology at Holland Park School in the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea. The works include the demolition of the existing 1950s-built school and the building of a new school and sports area.
In 2009, Wessex Archaeology undertook a substantial excavation at Margetts Pit, Burham, Kent, on behalf of Aylesford Newsprint Services Ltd via their consultants AECOM prior to the development of the site and the creation of a large lagoon. The excavations were undertaken as a requirement of planning consent as requested by Kent County Council.
Wessex Archaeology was commissioned to prepare a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) by Wiltshire Council (formerly Salisbury District Council) for the Grade II Registered Council House Gardens at Bourne Hill in Salisbury. Salisbury District Council was dissolved and subsumed into Wiltshire Council in April 2009.
Wessex Archaeology's heritage team based in Sheffield investigated the former Lion Works, one of the few remaining metal trades works within Sheffield. Constructed in the mid-19th century, the Grade II listed, three-storey brick structure comprised a narrow linear range of workshops orientated end on to the street with a narrow yard with external steps leading to the upper floors.
Trial trenching behind the Exide Battery Works, off Salford Road, Bolton was carried out on the site of a proposed In-Vessel Composting Facility for the Greater Manchester Waste Disposal Authority. The work evaluated the site of the former historic farmstead of Bank House and an area of historic coal mining associated with the former Bank House Colliery.
Down Farm, Cranborne Chase: Practical Archaeology Courses 2004-2008
A team from Wessex Archaeology's Sheffield office carried out an excavation within Wakefield Cathedral in advance of the construction of a new floor. The work revealed over 20 inhumations, which are mostly coffin burials associated with the 18th/19th century church. Many of the graves were previously disturbed, probably during Sir George Gilbert Scott’s restoration work in the mid- to late-19th century.
In May and June 2012 Wessex Archaeology undertook excavation and recording of an 18th century garden feature, a former water cascade within the grounds of Bramham Park, Wetherby, West Yorkshire. The Grade 1 listed grounds and park at Bramham were laid out during the period 1700–1713 for the Benson family, and include early water garden features which have not often survived in contemporary gardens.
Staff from the Sheffield office have recently undertaken a community archaeology project at Wortley Tin Mill, Barnsley in collaboration with Hunshelf Parish Council, the East Peak Innovation Partnership and the South Yorkshire Industrial History Society. The project involved the production of a desk-based assessment, landscape survey and on-site and off-site training.
Investigations by Wessex Archaeology at Kingsmead Quarry, Horton, Berkshire, have revealed a complex archaeological landscape and evidence that people had used the area since the end of the last Ice Age, a period of over 12,000 years.
In 2013 Wessex Archaeology undertook a programme of historical building recording and evaluation work at the Square Chapel, as part of the Cornerstone Project which is adding an extension to the Arts Centre and alterations to Piece Hall.
The Steart Point Habitat Creation Scheme is a project in North Somerset which will create a major new wetland habitat, including some 183 ha of intertidal salt marsh, 40 ha of intertidal mudflat, 69 ha of transitional brackish habitat, 79 ha of coastal grazing marsh, 32 hectares of brackish and saline lagoons, 26 hectares of freshwater lagoon and numerous ponds and ditches.
A team from the Sheffield Office undertook excavations along the line of a new water main from Uckington to Atcham in Shropshire. The water main runs to the north of the Scheduled Monument (No. 1003705) of Wroxeter Roman City (Viroconium) which developed from the 1st century AD onwards, and became the fourth largest city in Roman Britain.
In December 2012 Wessex Archaeology was asked to prepared a Historic Building Record on behalf of Skillingtons, through Donald Insall Associates. Westminster Hall is part of the Palace of Westminster and is listed Grade I.
In July 2012 Wessex Archaeology was asked to prepared a Historic Building Record for Purelake New Homes. This included building recording of the Empire Kinema which was built in 1913 for Alexander Bernstein.
Wessex Archaeology Wales has undertaken a photogrammetric survey of The Old College, Aberystwyth, one of the town’s most striking buildings. A total of 222 photos were taken with a standard digital SLR, which were then processed to produce a 3d model from which accurate orthographic projections can be taken.
A team from Wessex Archaeology carried out the first phase of archaeological works at Rossington Inland Port, near Doncaster, South Yorkshire. CgMs Consulting commissioned Wessex Archaeology to carry out geophysical survey, evaluation and excavations of the 40 hectare site, which has been carried out over two and half years.
A combination of historical research, building recording and archaeological excavation revealed the complex history of the site that in 1800 was still surrounded by fields on the town’s north-western edge, but which soon after was swallowed up by steel works, foundries and workers’ housing. Sheffield’s burgeoning population provided the workforce for the series of industrial premises.
Wessex Archaeology undertook an archaeological evaluation to the east of Llangefni on the Isle of Anglesey as part of proposals for a new link road. Nineteen trenches were excavated which uncovered evidence of the post-medieval (1500-1800) field system as well as several features which could not be dated. This suggests that the area has been in a predominantly rural landscape until the present day.
Archaeological investigations at Cannington Court in 2013−14 provided further information about the former priory and subsequent Elizabethan manor house. In particular, the excavations identified several phases of activity relating to the foundation and development of the priory.
The conversion and reuse of the Butcher Wheel, a former Sheffield cutlery works on Arundel Street, included a programme of archaeological building recording and detailed analysis of its evolution and operation.
Bath’s riverside underwent a major redevelopment aimed at revitalising a previously neglected quarter of the city. As part of these works, Wessex Archaeology was commissioned by Alun Griffiths Ltd. to undertake an archaeological excavation during preliminary flood mitigation and development-enabling works at Bath Quays.
In 2014 Wessex Archaeology produced a Conservation Management Plan (CMP) for the HMS Victory located within Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. The HMS Victory is a World Class Historic Vessel and an exemplary version of a warship from the Age of Sail with a distinguished service career.
Wessex Archaeology undertook a programme of archaeological works on the south side of Chipping Campden, in the Cotswolds of Gloucestershire, which have produced the first archaeological evidence for Saxon settlement in the town. The works were undertaken by our Bristol Team in advance of a proposed residential development in Badgers Field, off George Lane.
The site of Wessex Archaeology West’s excavation at the Hucclecote Centre, Hucclecote lies to the north of a Roman villa which is known from excavations undertaken by Canon Bazeley in 1911 and E.M. Clifford in 1933. The earliest parts of the Hucclecote villa complex are thought to have been built c. AD 150, but the presence of pottery below its floors suggested that there was an early Romano-British settlement pre-dating it.
In April 2017 Wessex Archaeology was commissioned by West Waddy ADP on behalf of the Winterbourne Medieval Barn Trust to undertake archaeological investigations in the grounds surrounding the medieval Court Farm Barn.
Excavation at Marnel Park and Merton Rise (Popley), Basingstoke
'Skeletons in the Shed': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of the Scheduled Ancient Monument of Blythburgh Priory in Blythburgh, Suffolk (Scheduled Ancient Monument Number SF215), to investigate the remains of the Augustinian Priory.
'The Naughty Nuns of Northampton': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of Sewardsley Priory within the gardens of Showsley Grounds, Towcester, Northamptonshire to investigate the remains of a Cistercian Priory founded, according to documentary sources, c.1155.
'Saxons on the Edge': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of Knave Hill, Stonton Wyville, Leicestershire, to investigate the existence of a possible Anglo-Saxon settlement site.
'The Cheyne Gang': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at Chesham Bois House in Buckinghamshire. The evaluation area comprised the garden of Chesham Bois House and the Church Field, the field adjacent to St. Leonard’s Church, which contains several earthworks, some 80 m to the north-east.
'A Tale of Two Villages': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ in the village of Wicken in Northamptonshire, to investigate the lost site of the church of St James at Wick Hamon, and to examine the early ‘nucleated’ settlement in the northern half of the village, Wick Dive.
'The Bodies in the Shed': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at Glendon Hall, Kettering, Northamptonshire with the aim of defining the extent of the known medieval cemetery and locating Glendon church, and refining the form and date of the known deserted medieval settlement c. 150m to the east of the Hall.
'The Manor That's Back to Front': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at Chenies Manor, Chenies, Buckinghamshire to ascertain the character, extent and degree of preservation of the archaeological remains at Chenies Manor.
'Lost Centuries of St Osyth': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ in the village of St Osyth, Essex. St Osyth, to gain an understanding of the evolution and development of St Osyth with its relationships to the development of the Priory and examine the role of the creek in the economy of the town.
'Beacon of the Fens': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at Chapel Head, a small hillock rising above the surrounding fenland. During the medieval period the Site was known to be the property of nearby Ramsey Abbey.
'Friar's Wash': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at Friars Wash, Hertfordshire, which lies in the hinterland of the important Romano-British town of Verulamium (St. Albans) and is located close to the assumed line of Watling Street, an important road running from London to Wroxeter.
'Mystery of the Ice Cream Villa': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ on the site of Yelnow Villa at Colworth Science Park, Bedfordshire to determine extent, character and condition of the Roman villa remains
'Back Garden Archaeology Revisiting a Roman Villa': Archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s Time Team on Castle Hill, Ipswich, Suffolk to investigate a previously discovered Roman villa.
'King Cnut's Manor': Archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s Time Team in the grounds of the Prebendal Manor House, Nassington, Northamptonshire, mentioned in Saxon chronicles as being the subject of a visit by King Cnut in the 11th century.
A medieval blast furnace: Archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s Time Team at two sites in the River Churnet valley, near Oakamoor, Staffordshire, to investigate the development of medieval and post-medieval iron smelting in the area.
Wessex Archaeology has been involved with Time Team from the very beginning through one of the programme’s best known characters, Phil Harding. In this section you can explore some of our work with Time Team. This page provides a copy of the full report produced after the work at Roxburgh, Kelso.
'Saxon Burials on the Ridge':Archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s Time Teamon land belonging to South Cliff Farm, South Carlton, Lincolnshire, to investigate the extent and date of an Early-Mid Saxon cemetery and the site of a deserted medieval village at Middle Carlton.
'There's a Villa Here Somewhere': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site within the village of Litlington in Cambridgeshire, with the aim of locating the ‘Litlington villa’ identified and excavated by the Reverend W. Clack in the 1820s, and a nearby Roman walled cemetery known as ‘Heaven’s Walls’, found during quarrying, also in the 1820s.
'Rooting for the Romans': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ within Bedford Purlieus Wood, Thornhaugh, near Peterborough, Cambridgeshire to investigate a series of Roman remains first identified at the beginning of the 19th century.
'Death and Dominos, the First POW Camp': an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of Norman Cross Camp, the first specially constructed prisoner of war camp for the internment of those captured in the Napoleonic Wars of 1793-1815.
'Under the Gravestones': An archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ around St Kyneburga’s Church, Castor, near Peterborough, Cambridgeshire to investigate the remains of an extensive complex of Roman buildings.
The House of the White Queen: In April 2010 an archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s ‘Time Team’ at the site of a Norman motte and bailey castle and medieval manorial site at Groby Old Hall.
'Saxon Death, Saxon Gold': Archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s Time Team on land at West Langton, Market Harborough, Leicestershire. In the 1970s, small-scale excavations revealed the remains of a poorly-preserved Romano-British villa in the field to the north of the Langton Brook. Anglo-Saxon artefacts, particularly metalwork, have also been found in the area, providing evidence for a possible settlement and cemetery located to the south, on the hilltop above the villa.
The Only Earl is Essex: Archaeological evaluation was undertaken by Channel 4’s Time Team at the site of Colne Priory, Earls Colne, near Colchester, Essex to investigate the site of the Benedictine Priory of St. Mary the Virgin and St. John the Evangelist founded by the De Vere family in the early 12th century.