Last summer, we ran a feature about the long-running excavation at Poulton, near Chester, which was then exploring a cemetery associated with a medieval farming community. Within the grave fills, however, the team found far older artefacts: hints of earlier occupation. Now they have revealed the remains of a completely unexpected Iron Age and Romano-British settlement, which is set to transform our understanding of the region during this period.

A similarly unexpected find is the focus of our second feature. Archaeological work at Bath Abbey revealed quantities of decorative 17th-century plaster, and when one of the team happened to glance through a pub window while collecting lunch, he noticed an ornate ceiling bearing strikingly similar motifs. Can this lucky spot help reconstruct the Abbey’s once glorious interior?

Further painstaking piecing-together of minute details is taking place at Stonehenge, where cutting-edge techniques are helping to pin down the sources of the bluestones with ever-greater precision, by analysing their mineralogical make-up.

As for more modern constructions, we cover the archaeology of working-class housing: what can be added to written accounts of the poorest during the Industrial Revolution?

Our final feature focuses on the Anglo-Saxon period. The appropriateness of this term as a historical descriptor has recently been the subject of heated debate. But what did the Anglo-Saxons call themselves?

We also have another special round-up of ways to explore ‘Heritage from Home’ – with a bonus page to highlight places that are welcoming visitors once more. We would love to hearyour experiences of visiting a newly reopened museum or site.

In This Issue:

FEATURES

TALES OF THE UNEXPECTED

Uncovering an illuminating Iron Age settlement at Poulton
North-west England is traditionally viewed as a sparsely populated, peripheral region during the Iron Age – but excavations in rural Cheshire have made surprisingdiscoveries that are drastically changing this picture.


A TALE OF TWO CEILINGS

Reconstructing Jacobean artistry at Bath Abbey
The discovery of a pub ceiling with intact 17th-century plasterwork motifs matching fragments found underneath the floor of Bath Abbey offers new insights into the history of both buildings.


PROVENANCING THE STONES

Mapping the Stonehenge bluestones with mineralogy
Attempts to identify the origins of the stones of Stonehenge have been made for centuries, but recent scientific advances are finally making it possible to determine exactly where some were quarried.


BLEAK HOUSES?

Delving into the development of working-class dwellings
Research into the oft-ignored archaeology of working-class homes has shed new light on the conditions in which many people lived during the Industrial Revolution.


THE ANGLO-SAXONS: WHO DID THEY THINK THEY WERE?

Exploring identity in early medieval England
The suitability of the term ‘Anglo-Saxon’ to describe the occupants of early medieval England has been the subject of much debate in recent years – but how did these people view themselves?


NEWS

Monumental discovery at Durrington Walls; All in the family: genetic links in prehistoric Ireland; London’s earliest playhouse?; Saving the Mary Rose; Murder, monuments, and material wealth uncovered during HS2 works; Science Notes; From Augustinians to Eboracum at York Guildhall; Finds Tray


REGULARS

Comment
Joe Flatman excavates the
CA archive

Context
Scipio Africanus’ gravestone, Henbury, Bristol

Reviews
Coton Park, Rugby, Warwickshire: a Middle Iron Age settlement with copper alloy casting; Farmsteads and Funerary Sites: the M1 Junction 12 improvements and the A5–M1 Link Road, Central Bedfordshire; The Role of Anglo-Saxon Great Hall Complexes in Kingdom Formation, in Comparison and in Context AD 500-750; Stirling’s Military Heritage; A Flight of Figureheads; Belfast History Tour

Heritage from Home
A selection of resources and activities to help you explore the past without leaving the house – as well as news of heritage sites that are reopening to the public

Sherds
Chris Catling’s irreverent take on heritage issues

Odd Socs
Pope’s Grotto Preservation Trust


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