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Lower Graylingwell, Chichester

Evans, Gary and Gorniak, Mariusz Lower Graylingwell, Chichester. [Client Report] (Unpublished)

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Abstract

Oxford Archaeology South (OAS) working for WSP/Parsons Brinckerhoff were commissioned by the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) to undertake an archaeological evaluation of land at Lower Graylingwell, Chichester, following the granting of outline planning permission (CDC/15/00743/OUT). The evaluation did not include the former recreation area, nor the area of two single storey 20th century buildings within the western part of the site. Twenty three trenches were excavated, including six within the abandoned Martin's Farm, and Historic Building Recording was also carried out on the standing remains of the farm, first documented in the 1772 map of the Manor of Broyle. Except in Martin's Farm, the trenches were originally intended to be 50m long, but numerous live services criss-crossing the site broke these into shorter ones. Trenches 1 and 2 at the south-west corner of the site were targeted upon a large entrenchment ditch found in a previous excavation below the Chichester Centre to the east. Trench 15 was targeted upon the possible line of a medieval culvert. Trenches 21-25 in Martin's Farm were located to answer specific questions raised by the historic maps about the location, phasing and function of the buildings. Within the constraints of services and standing trees, the other trenches were laid out to provide an even distribution across the area. Trench 1 located the entrenchment ditch, which contained preserved organic remains close to the base from which a radiocarbon date of 80-220 cal. AD was obtained. The environmental evidence suggested that the bank had a hedge that was overgrown, and lay in an area of pasture. The entrenchment was not found in Trench 2, but shallower Roman ditches slightly offset from it suggested that there had been a gap here, later blocked off. The Roman features were truncated by a pond of 20th century date marked on historic maps. No trace of the medieval culvert was found, and the other trenches outside Martin's Farm revealed only a few undated ditches, and very few finds, though these included two residual flint piercers of Neolithic or Bronze Age date. Trenches in Martin's Farm did not locate any evidence of buildings or activity earlier than the L-shaped block shown on the 1772 map, and the few finds did not refine the date at which these buildings were constructed. Trench 21 did however find evidence for a central timber floor within the barn, supporting its interpretation as a threshing barn, and Trenches 22 and 23 clarified that the northern arm of the L was not at the north-west corner, as shown on the early maps, but further east. This northern building was probably a stable. Trenches 24 and 25 were dug to investigate respectively a circular and a square structure shown on the historic maps of which no evidence survived above ground. The position of the circular structure was confirmed, but its purpose was not clarified; three brick piers below the edges of the square structure indicate that this had been a raised granary.

Item Type:Client Report
Subjects:Period > UK Periods > Medieval 1066 - 1540 AD
Period > UK Periods > Roman 43 - 410 AD
Geographical Areas > English Counties > West Sussex
ID Code:5479
Deposited By: Scott
Deposited On:23 Sep 2019 14:00
Last Modified:23 Sep 2019 14:00

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