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The Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon Suffolk

The Lakenheath Horse & Warrior Grave (Jo Caruth)

with Jo Caruth
(Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service)


at the Old Court, Sutton Hoo (map)
on Saturday, 30th November 2013.

This day will consider how the results of recent excavations by Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service will help to answer some of the research questions for the Early and Middle Anglo-Saxon period in Suffolk. It will present in detail the results of four excavations, at West Stow (2008), Eye (2007), the nationally significant Early Anglo-Saxon cemetery at RAF Lakenheath (1992-2012), and Brandon (1979-88), and consider them thematically to address some of the key research topics.

Provisional Programme
(There may be variations to the programme on the day)
  10:00 Coffee on arrival  
  10:15 Introduction – We begin with a look at the Historic Environment Record data and the contribution excavation results have made to the increase in knowledge, in comparison with evidence from Portable Antiquities Scheme and other sources. A summary of the four sites will be presented and an outline of evidence from other recent pieces of work.  
  11:15 Coffee  
  11:45 Settlement evidence - We will look at the evidence for Early Anglo-Saxon settlements primarily from West Stow, Eye and RAF Lakenheath comparing it with other regional published sites, such as West Stow, Carlton Colville, Mucking and then with the Middle Saxon site at Brandon. We will examine and compare:
• Building types, considering the evidence alongside current theories for their construction, use and disuse.
• Evidence for settlement layout and zoning of activities, looking particularly at changes between sites and over time.
• Evidence for and against nucleation of settlement - in particular looking at the interpretations within the original West Stow publication against the results of more recent work.
• Discussion of the evidence for changes between the Early and Middle Saxon periods, and discussion of the potential drivers for change.
  12:45 Lunch break  
  14:00 Burials – The focus will be on the results of the ongoing analysis and publication of the Early Anglo-Saxon cemeteries at RAF Lakenheath, outlining the range of studies taking place and presenting some of the available results. There will be particular focus on some of the ground-breaking scientific studies that are being undertaken on the population and artefacts as well as discussion of the evidence for social organisation, belief and lifestyle.  
  15:00 Tea break  
  15:15 Agriculture, craft, technology, trade and economy - We will look at the evidence gained from the various excavations and:
• consider the evidence for metalworking and glass production in particular.
• examine evidence for trading both locally and with the continent.
• discuss the evidence for farming and the nature of the agrarian economy
• review the environmental data, comparing the evidence from different sites and looking at how this influenced the settlement activity.
  16:20 Close  

About Jo Caruth

Jo is Senior project Officer with Suffolk County Council Archaeology Service, and has more than 20 years archaeological fieldwork experience working in Suffolk. Although she has worked on sites of all periods her most recent work revolves around the excavations at RAF Lakenheath and the Anglo-Saxon settlement at Eye. She is currently working on a major post-excavation programme funded by the MoD to publish the results of the RAF Lakenheath work, including prehistoric, Roman and Anglo-Saxon burials and Roman and Anglo-Saxon settlement.

Some suggestions for further reading
(useful but not essential)

Blair, J., 2000 The Anglo-Saxon Age. A Very Short Introduction to Anglo-Saxon England.
Hamerow, H., 1993 Excavations at Mucking Volume 2: The Anglo-Saxon Settlement (London, English Heritage/British Museum Press)
Hamerow, H., 2002.Early Medieval Settlements. The Archaeology of Rural Communities in North-West Europe 400-900. Oxford University Press
Lucy, S. 2000. The Anglo-Saxon Way of Death. Sutton Publishing
Lucy, S., Tipper, J. and Dickens, A., 2009 The Anglo-Saxon settlement and cemetery at Bloodmoor Hill, Carlton Colville, Suffolk, East. Anglian Archaeol. 131
Plunkett, S., 2005 Suffolk in Anglo-Saxon Times. Tempus Publishing Ltd
Tayor, A., 2001 Burial Practice in Early England. Tempus Publishing Ltd
Tipper, J. 2004 The Grubenhaus in Anglo-Saxon England. Landscape Research Centre
West, S.E., 1985 West Stow, The Anglo-Saxon Village. East Anglian Archaeology Report No. 24


Please phone or email to check the availability of places. Study Days are 38 per person, which includes a full day of lectures, access to the NT site, parking, coffee and tea throughout the day, and access to the NT exhibition. Once you have reserved your place please send payment to confirm the booking. For your first booking please complete the application form to ensure that we have recorded your contact details correctly.

Wuffing Education,
4 Hilly Fields,
Woodbridge, Suffolk IP12 4DX
tel : 01394 386498

Email cliff AT wuffingeducation.co.uk
(replace 'AT' by '@' in order to send email - we used 'AT' to avoid spam robots automatically sending us emails)
Website www.wuffingeducation.co.uk

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Updated 7 November, 2013
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