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HER Number MWB10069
Record Type Find Spot

Grid Reference SU 458 662
Map Sheet SU46NE
Parish Newbury, West Berkshire
Map:Show location on Streetmap


Archaeologically significant gravel pit with many finds of flint and pottery from wide range of periods

Associated Legal Designations or Protected Status

  • Registered Battlefield 1000026: Battle of Newbury 1643

Other Statuses and Cross-References

  • Berkshire SMR No. (pre 2000): 01447.00.000
  • National Monuments Record No.: SU 46 NE 70
    SU 4587 6627
  • Primary Reference Number: 1535-9
    Ref from planning consultation 13/12/1985 for application at Enborne Gate Farm

Monument Type(s):

  • FINDSPOT (Lower Palaeolithic to Middle Bronze Age - 500000 BC to 1001 BC?)

Full Description

In 1936 a member of the Newbury District Field Club recorded, "Few if any sites in the Newbury District have proved more prolific in remains from all periods than the gravel-pit at Enborne Gate, worked by Mr Frewen… thanks to the energy of our indefatigable member, Brig-Gen W K Hardy, these have been recorded in our Transactions and have found a home in the Newbury Museum. The objects hitherto recorded date from the Lower Palaeolithic, Neolithic, Middle Bronze and Early Iron Ages, and include pottery of Saxon and medieval times." <4>

The first description of Hardy's work was when he saw some fragments of Early Iron Age pottery in 1931 at the base of a depression in the gravel, which he interpreted as a filled in pond <2, p178>. A year later a number of shallow pits were found sunk in the gravel, 18 inches deep and about 2 feet in diameter, and containing Saxon pottery; it was possible to restore one whole pot to be displayed in Newbury Museum. A larger pit had no finds. <2, p209>. Fragments of pottery attributed to the Bronze Age also came from a hollow near by <3, p127>.

Further workings at the gravel pit allowed a geological section to be drawn, showing dark blue clay lying beneath the gravel and resting upon yellow sand, one of the basement layers of the Reading Beds. A small flint flake was found just beneath the clay <2, p228>.

In 1934, a large pit about 5 feet in diameter and 4 feet deep was uncovered 25 yards to the east of the pits found previously. Neolithic Peterborough ware was recovered from this pit associated with, or resting on, two fragments of sarsen stone, perhaps parts of a muller or saddle quern. Two flint flakes were also found <3, p127>.

Hardy examined the north face of the gravel pit, where the gravel was capped by a layer of humus which contained much medieval pottery. Although the Salcome Road Roman villa was known to lie only 300 yards to the east, no Romano-British pottery had been found in the gravel pit <3, p127>.

Two abraded St Acheul flint implements from the Enborne Gate gravel pit were given to the museum in 1935 <3, p130> <7>. Discoveries were also noted in the Berkshire Archaeological Journals of 1937 and 1938 <5><6>.

The Ordnance Survey field investigator visited the site in the 1960s <9> but by then the gravel pit was disused; the local farmer occasionally dug gravel for his own use but had made no further finds.

(The Saxon, medieval and post-medieval pottery was apparently examined and commented on by A Vince, Berks Archaeological Unit, Dec 1979?)

Sources and further reading

---Newbury District Field Club. 1933. TRANS NEWBURY DISTRICT FIELD CLUB 1933 VOL 6 NO 4. p228 Enborne Gate Gravel-Pit. [Article in serial / SWB10688]
<01>Peake, H. 1931. The Archaeology of Berkshire. P194. [Monograph / SWB10018]
<02>Newbury District Field Club. 1932. TRANS NEWBURY DISTRICT FIELD CLUB 1932 VOL 6 NO 3. P177, 178, 209, 228. [Article in serial / SWB6934]
<03>Newbury District Field Club. 1935. TRANS NEWBURY DISTRICT FIELD CLUB 1935 VOL 7 NO 2. P127, 130, 133. [Article in serial / SWB10880]
<04>Newbury District Field Club. 1936. TRANS NEWBURY DISTRICT FIELD CLUB 1936 VOL 7 NO 3. p185 Middle Palaeolithic Implements from Enborne Gate. [Article in serial / SWB12911]
<05>Berkshire Archaeological Society. 1938. Berkshire Archaeological Journal 1938 42. 42. In ADS Journals. 10.5284/1000017. P23 in Notes on Recent Antiquarian Discoveries in Berkshire (II) by F M Underhill. [Article in serial / SWB10893]
http://archaeologydataservice.ac.uk/archives/view/berks_bas_2007/journal.cfm?volume=42 (Accessed 03/08/2016)
<06>Berkshire Archaeological Society. 1937. Berkshire Archaeological Journal 1937 41. 41. In ADS Journals. 10.5284/1000017. P35 in Notes on Recent Antiquarian Discoveries in Berkshire by F M Underhill. [Article in serial / SWB10778]
http://archaeologydataservice.ac.uk/archives/view/berks_bas_2007/journal.cfm?volume=41 (Accessed 04/02/2016)
<07>Newbury District Field Club. 1939. TRANS NEWBURY DISTRICT FIELD CLUB 1939 VOL 8 NO 2. p140 in Borough of Newbury Museum - Some recent accessions of local interest by Harold Peake. [Article in serial / SWB10529]
<08>Archaeology Branch of Ordnance Survey & Newbury Museum staff. 1913 onwards. Newbury Museum Archaeology Map XLII NE.. 42NE. 6 inch. Annotated Enborne Gate gravel pit, in connection with medieval pottery. [Map / SWB11441]
<09>Ordnance Survey. 1960s-70s. Ordnance Survey Field Investigators Comments. F1 NVQ 11-SEP-63. [Personal observation / SWB14640]
<10>Wymer, J J. 1968. Lower Palaeolithic Archaeology in Britain, as represented by the Thames Valley. p113. [Monograph / SWB13979]
<11>Wymer, J J (ed). 1977. Gazetteer of Mesolithic Sites in England and Wales with a Gazetteer of Upper Palaeolithic sites in England and Wales. 20. p10. [Monograph / SWB10038]
http://archaeologydataservice.ac.uk/catalogue/adsdata/arch-281-1/dissemination/pdf/cba_rr_020.pdf (Accessed 07/10/2015)
<12>Wessex Archaeology. 1993. The Southern Rivers Palaeolithic Project: Report No 1, The Upper Thames Valley, the Kennet Valley and the Solent Drainage System. Report No 1. p62. [Monograph / SWB14674]

Related Monuments

  • None recorded
  • Associated Excavations and Fieldwork

    EWB871The Southern Rivers Palaeolithic Project