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Historic England Research Records

Borough Fen Enclosure

Hob Uid: 350093
Location :
City Of Peterborough
City Of Peterborough
Newborough, Borough Fen
Grid Ref : TF1908007290
Summary : Plough-damaged Iron Age lowland fort. Despite damage the interior, protected by later alluvium, preserves a nationally important Iron Age occupation area, with waterlogged features
More information : (TF 19080727) Occupation site. Section examined in W
side of silage pit (19140719) shows black layer of occupation
debris (cattle bones, imported stone, sherds, burnt wood)
underlying a bank of stones, sand and clay, & extending into
central raised area. C. 2' of topsoil overlies this black layer
inside the bank. The level of the natural (soil) is about the
same inside and outside, so that the raised area inside (2' - 3'
above the surrounding land) appears to be artificially built up
by the black layer & overlying 'topsoil'. Questions source? The
'pit' south of the camp is down to rock. This may have provided
some material for building the inside area. Sherds from
occupation (black) layer not RB, Poss Md (Dunning) poss mid 1st
cent, I A 'A' type (Miss Fell) Walter of Whittlesey refers to
"putting banks round holms in the Marsh' c 1320, in a passage
referring to Cranemoor, Noretholm, Eyebury & Oxeney.
Visited May-June '51 seen on AP CPE/UK/1932N3086-7.(1)

A near circular earthwork, the main feature comprising a ditched
enclosure with a slightly elevated interior. Building
foundations set against the inside of the ditch occur mainly to
the south and a few to the north. The site is cut by a modern
road east of which the land is arable and the slopes are much
spread. A break in the centre of this part may be the remains of
an entrance. Examination of AP's(2a) shows the outer ditch still
visible on the ground to the north and west probably encompassed
the whole site.(2)

Possibly an inhabited pastoral enclosure of medieval date.

Surveyed at 1/2500.

The ten-acre enclosure near Peakirk has been shown to be a well preserved Iron-age ring-fort and not a medieval monastic site. The interior is entirely buried beneath clay and all its floors etc are still intact. The bank and ditch that surround it, too, are intact and the defensive ditch is waterlogged. It must be among the most important Early Iron-age sites in Britain (3).

Additional reference describing survey/auger work (4)

(TF 1908 0729) In December 1993, RCHME's Cambridge Field Office carried out an analytical earthwork survey of the enclosure, following a request from Alison Taylor, Cambridgeshire County Council Archaeologist. The survey work complements the results of recent augur surveys and limited excavation of the site. The augur survey (1987) demonstrated the survival of a well preserved buried soil and a major phase of occupation, sealed by alluvial deposits of probably Roman date. In 1991 the Ancient Monuments Laboratory carried out satellite photography and resistivity survey. In 1992-3, limited excavation was carried out along the sides of Redcow Drain, and sections through both ramparts were exposed. Organic material and Middle Iron Age pottery (third to second century BC) were recovered from the water-logged primary fills of the main ditch. (5a, b, c)

The RCHME survey confirmed the position of the entrance on the east side of the enclosure with evidence of an inturned gateway. Other postulated entrances are less certain: a breach in the north side seems to be the result vehicular erosion.

For further details see RCHME Level 3 client report and survey at 1: 1000 scale, held in archive. (5)

Sources :
Source Number : 1
Source : Annotated Record Map
Source details : Corr 6'(Mrs S J Hallam 1953)"
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Source Number : 2
Source : Field Investigators Comments
Source details : F1 BHS 18-DEC-68
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Source : Borough Fen
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Source : Borough Fen/ink survey
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Source Number : 2a
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : APs (RAF CPE/UK 1932 Jan 17th 47 3086-7)
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Source Number : 3
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Durobrivae 9 1984 10 (F Pryor)
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Source Number : 4
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Northamptonshire Archaeol 18 1983 167 (F Pryor)
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Source Number : 5
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : RCHME: Borough Fen enclosure survey
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Source Number : 5a
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Malim T and McKenna R 1994 Borough Fen Ring-work: Iron Age Fort Newborough. Fenland Research 8
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Source Number : 5b
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : Hall D 1987 'The Fenland Project No. 2: Cambridgeshire Survey, Peterborough to March East' EAA 35, 26-8
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Source Number : 5c
Source : VIRTUAL CATALOGUE ENTRY TO SUPPORT NAR MIGRATION
Source details : French CAI & Pryor FMM 1993 'The South-West Fen Dyke Survey Project' Antiquity 62, 343-8
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Source : Borough Fen, southern earthworks/pencil survey
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Monument Types:
Monument Period Name : Middle Iron Age
Display Date : Middle Iron Age
Monument End Date : -100
Monument Start Date : -300
Monument Type : Enclosed Settlement, Sub Circular Enclosure
Evidence : Earthwork
Monument Period Name : Medieval
Display Date : Medieval
Monument End Date : 1540
Monument Start Date : 1066
Monument Type : Findspot
Evidence :

Components and Objects:
Period : Middle Iron Age
Component Monument Type : Enclosed Settlement, Sub Circular Enclosure
Object Type : VESSEL
Object Material : Pottery
Period : Medieval
Component Monument Type : Findspot
Object Type : VESSEL
Object Material : Pottery

Related Records from other datasets:
External Cross Reference Source : Scheduled Monument Legacy (County No.)
External Cross Reference Number : CB 222
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : SMR Number (Cambridgeshire)
External Cross Reference Number : 591
External Cross Reference Notes :
External Cross Reference Source : National Monuments Record Number
External Cross Reference Number : TF 10 NE 17
External Cross Reference Notes :

Related Warden Records :
Associated Monuments : 372192
Relationship type : General association
Associated Monuments : 890640
Relationship type : Is referred to by

Related Activities :
Associated Activities : FIELD OBSERVATION ON TF 10 NE 17
Activity type : FIELD OBSERVATION (VISUAL ASSESSMENT)
Start Date : 1968-12-18
End Date : 1968-12-18
Associated Activities : BOROUGH FEN SITE BOF 7, NEWBOROUGH FEN
Activity type : EXCAVATION
Start Date : 1983-01-01
End Date : 1983-12-31
Associated Activities : BOROUGH FEN RINGWORK
Activity type : GEOPHYSICAL SURVEY
Start Date : 1991-01-01
End Date : 1991-12-31
Associated Activities : BOROUGH FEN IRON AGE FORT (NEW BF 93)
Activity type : WATCHING BRIEF
Start Date : 1992-01-01
End Date : 1992-12-31
Associated Activities : RCHME: BOROUGH FEN ENCLOSURE SURVEY
Activity type : MEASURED SURVEY
Start Date : 1993-12-01
End Date : 1993-12-15