Haverhill Retail Park dig unearths Roman farmstead

  • 12 May 2013
  • From the section Suffolk
Archaeological dig at the site of the Haverhill Research Park
Image caption James Newboult said the size of the dig helped reveal the site's extensive history

A high-tech research park is going to be built on land that once housed a Roman farmstead.

An archaeological dig on the site of what will become the Haverhill Research Park has revealed traces of activity from the Iron Age through to the 1840s.

An Anglo Saxon hall and several pieces of jewellery were also found during the excavation, which covered 4.5 hectares.

Headland Archaeology said the dig had provided a "really interesting window" into Haverhill's history.

Image caption Anglo Saxon brooches were unearthed in the dig in Haverhill

The research park is being built on the A1307, the main road to Cambridge from Haverhill, and will also include a hotel and housing.

James Newboult, archaeological project manager, said the findings would be analysed and recorded to preserve the history of the site.

"There hasn't been a lot of archaeological work in recent times in Haverhill, so this really adds to the picture," he said.

The farmstead dates back to the "first or second centuries", he said.

"It's made up of a series of enclosures. Where today we use fences or bricks to define our areas, they use ditches and banks.

"It's what we call a cellular enclosure. People would have lived there, kept animals, and farmed their crops."

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