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HER Number:MDV75660
Name:Iron Age Settlement to north of Digby Drive, Exeter


Excavations in advance of the construction of Clyst Heath Primary School revealed an Iron Age settlement comprising the remains of four round houses. Sherds of Southwest Decorated ware were recovered from pits within and around the houses. Lack of variation in the pottery assemblage suggests that the settlement was short-lived.


Grid Reference:SX 957 913
Map Sheet:SX99SE
Admin AreaDevon
Civil ParishExeter
Ecclesiastical ParishUNKNOWN

Protected Status: none recorded

Other References/Statuses: none recorded

Monument Type(s) and Dates

  • SETTLEMENT (Middle Iron Age to Late Iron Age - 300 BC to 100 BC (Between))

Full description

Clyst Heath Community Primary School, 2008, Under Our School (Un-published). SDV352560.

The remains of a Bronze Age trackway and four Iron Age round houses were revealed during excavations on the site of the school. Sherds of Southwest Decorated ware were recovered from pits within the round houses.

Best, J. E., 2009, Archaeological Excavation at Clyst Heath Primary School, Exeter (Report - Excavation). SDV342737.

Small settlement of 3rd-1st century BC. The circular structures were clustered towards the base of the east facing slope of the ridge and included at least three hut circles. The limits of the settlement did not appear to be marked by an enclosure or boundary though the tightly packed nature of the features suggests that one fomerly existed. No occupation deposits in the form of hearths or entrances survived and only one hut had any internal features. Large pits around the settlement may have been used for storage and most of the pottery was found at the base of these pits. Lack of variation within the pottery assemblage suggests the settlement was short-lived. Two parallel dtches circa 4 metres apart ran northeast to southwest across the settlement and may represent the edges of a track or drove way providing access between the ridge and lower ground to the east. Very little dating evidence was recovered from the ditches suggesting the track may have predated the settlement.

Quinnell, H. + Farnell, A., 2016, Prehistoric Sites in the Digby Area of Exeter, 106-110, figs 30, 32, 34-36 (Article in Serial). SDV363832.

Group of ring gullies and pits described.

Sources / Further Reading

SDV342737Report - Excavation: Best, J. E.. 2009. Archaeological Excavation at Clyst Heath Primary School, Exeter. Exeter Archaeology Report. 09.21. A4 Stapled + Digital.
SDV352560Un-published: Clyst Heath Community Primary School. 2008. Under Our School. A4 Stapled + Digital.
Linked documents:2
SDV363832Article in Serial: Quinnell, H. + Farnell, A.. 2016. Prehistoric Sites in the Digby Area of Exeter. Proceedings of the Devon Archaeological Exploration Society. 74. Paperback Volume. 106-110, figs 30, 32, 34-36.

Associated Monuments

MDV128966Related to: Iron Age ovens excavated, Digby Drive (Monument)
MDV128965Related to: Middle Neolithic pit off Digby Drive (Monument)
MDV128935Related to: Prehistoric trackway to the north of Digby Drive, Exeter (Monument)
MDV128964Related to: Ring ditch off Digby Drive (Monument)
MDV128969Related to: Roman ditch, Clyst Heath School, Exeter (Monument)

Associated Finds

  • FDV1405 - SHERD (Middle Iron Age to Late Iron Age - 300 BC to 100 BC)

Associated Events

  • EDV4537 - Excavation at Clyst Heath Primary School
  • EDV8336 - Monitoring and Recording of a Housing Development at Digby Drive (Ref: 08.06)

Date Last Edited:Oct 15 2020 2:34PM