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TheUrnfield

Page history last edited by Peter Tipton 7 years, 9 months ago

THE URNFIELD LEGEND

page contributed by Geoff Hoare

 

A Bronze Age burial site was found during gravel workings in the fields, now known as the Urnfield, between Moulsham Lane and Chandlers Lane.

 

Why the legend is true

During gravel extraction in 1926 several cinerary urns were unearthed by workman but were unfortunately smashed in the process. The surviving sherds were taken to Reading Museum where they were identified as being from Late Bronze Age 'Bucket Urns'. Mention was made at the time of a domed chamber in the gravel which contained the urns and which was later used by the

workman to store their tools until it was demolished. In 1927 and 1928 further evidence of cremations was found and once again all the sherds were taken to Reading Museum.

Also found were loom weights which are indicative of a settlement. From 1928-36 some 30 Late Bronze Age Bucket Urns were found in the two gravel pits either side of the road. Of great interest was the reported evidence of occupation on the urnfield site. Normally a settlement site would be approximately 400m away from a surface cemetery.

It is a matter of great regret that no archaeological investigation was carried out at the site during the gravel extraction. The only archaeological input at the time was the identification of the pottery sherds by Reading Museum. Late Bronze Age cinerary urns have been found in other parts of Yateley on the same contour as the Moor Park Farm site.

A report, seemingly based on information from Reading Museum and Mr English, the site owner, was written later by Stewart Piggott, an eminent archaeologist.

 

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