Archaeological excavation begins ahead of Cambridgeshire housing development

May 27, 2021

A major archaeological excavation has started in Burwell ahead of the construction of a much anticipated new housing scheme being delivered by This Land™.

Following a series of investigative digs, the 6.5 hectare site on Newmarket Road has been identified as a possible site of a significant Bronze Age settlement. A team of archaeologists will therefore be undertaking a full dig to ensure this 800BC settlement is recorded and any artefacts safely recovered and removed.

The excavation is being carried out by Oxford Archaeology East in two phases. The main dig covering the potential area of the Bronze Age settlement has started. The area identified as a cremation burial ground will be excavated and examined ahead of construction of Phase Two of the scheme.

Supported by Cambridgeshire County Council (CCC) and appointed by specialist archaeological and heritage consultants Orion, the archaeologist’s work will involve the careful stripping of topsoil off the areas of excavation, which will then be followed by the hand excavation of archaeological features revealed.

Once the fieldwork has been completed, there will be a programme of post-excavation assessment and analysis of the artefacts and environmental samples which will be recorded and followed by a full publication of the results. The information will be built into a story of the site and archived, and the artifacts will be donated to CCC and made available for public viewing.

Commenting on the start of the excavation, Acting CEO David Lewis of This Land™ said: “Given the historical significance of the site in Burwell, it’s very exciting that the archaeologists have commenced work on-site. We look forward to their discoveries, which will provide an archival legacy of artefacts for future generations to enjoy.”