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Sherford communities old and new

The creation of a new town on the eastern side of Plymouth has afforded a rare opportunity to investigate a wide multi-period archaeological landscape, revealing the hidden secrets of the people who lived there centuries before. Gareth Chaffey and Matt Kendall explain how these discoveries are pushing back the boundaries of our understanding of southern Devon’s past.

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The die is cast: Investigating Icenian coinage

In a period that is largely defined by the Romans and their written histories, thanks to a relatively poor archaeological record, coinage offers one of the best ways of learning about Britain’s sometimes elusive Late Iron Age tribes. A ten-year study of the coins of the East Anglian Iceni by John Talbot has delved into the production, distribution, and characteristics of their currency, illuminating previously unknown aspects of their culture. Here, he explores questions of identity, and hunts for hidden faces.

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Fishbourne at 50: Celebrating half a century at a unique Roman palace

This month marks 50 years since Fishbourne Roman Palace, one of the great archaeological discoveries of the 1960s, opened its doors to the public. The site continues to hold wide appeal for visitors and researchers alike. Here, Betina Blake and Katrina Burton explore how our understanding of the Roman structures has evolved, and how the anniversary is being celebrated.

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Prehistoric pop culture: deciphering the DNA of the Bell Beaker Complex

More than 4,500 years ago, a hugely popular cultural phenomenon – today known as the Bell Beaker Complex – captured the prehistoric imagination, flourishing across much of Europe. Archaeologists are still deliberating over how this Complex, first identified in the 19th century, developed so quickly and effectively. Now the largest ancient DNA study to-date has shed revolutionary new light on the question, with surprising implications for our understanding of ancient populations – particularly that of Britain, which seems to have undergone an almost complete genetic turnover in just a few centuries.

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Normal for Normans? Exploring the large round mounds of England

Most of England’s monumental mounds are assumed to be Norman castle mottes built in the period immediately after the Conquest – but could some of them have much earlier origins? Jim Leary, Elaine Jamieson, and Phil Stastney report on a project that set out to investigate some of these mighty constructions.

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Iron Age interior design

Across Dorset, impressive earthworks mark the location of Iron Age hillforts. Until recently, though, little archaeological attention had been paid to what lay within these mighty ramparts. Now, thanks to modern geophysics, the picture is beginning to come into focus.

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The Ness of Brodgar

For over a decade, archaeological research at the Ness of Brodgar in Orkney has uncovered an astonishing array of Neolithic structures, including a spectacular settlement, monumental buildings, and hundreds of examples of prehistoric artwork. Nick Card brings us the latest news from the Ness.

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Feeding the ‘builders of Stonehenge’

A newly opened exhibition at Stonehenge documents the diet of the community thought to have been responsible for erecting the main phase of the monument – including the surprisingly far-flung origins of some of their food.

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Ice Age Jersey

If you gazed out across the English Channel 15,000 years ago, the view would be very different to what you might expect today. Excavations in Jersey have uncovered the remains of a Magdalenian hunter-gatherer campsite, founded long before the Channel Island was surrounded by sea.

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