Monument record MCC5164 - Late Bronze Age and early Anglo-Saxon occupation features at Frog Hall Farm, Fingringhoe


A small excavation in 1975-76 by Colchester Archaeological Committee of a possible domestic timber structure within an irregular ring ditch, dated to the Late Bronze Age. These were defined as cropmarks in 1974 and they are within a much larger area of cropmarks. In addition, a small assemblage of early Anglo-Saxon material suggested occupation in the immediate vicinity.


Grid reference TM 0347 1964 (point)
Map sheet TM01NW


Type and Period (5)

Full Description

A small excavation was undertaken by Colchester Excavation Committee (now Colchester Archaeological Trust) in 1976 and 1976 at Frog Hall Farm (to the northwest of Jaggers), Fingringhoe, in advance of gravel extraction. The excavation was centred on a ring ditch recorded as a cropmark by air photography.<1><2<3>

A variable depth (250-450mm) of modern ploughsoil was removed by machine onto subsoil L2, which had modern cultivation marks but no archaeological features. L2 was excavated by hand in 1m excavation squares and spits, down to the undisturbed natural.

The excavation defined an irregular ring-ditch F1, c.0.85-3.25m wide x c.0.85m deep and c.11.2m in internal diameter, dated to the Late Bronze Age (LBA); the feature was descibed as 'an irregular pennanular ditch with a narrow causeway on its eastern side'. There were a number of shallow internal features (i.e. within the interior of the ring ditch), three of which contained Late Bronze Age pottery. The report interpret a group of post-hole (F4, 6, 7, 14-16 and 18) within the internal area of the ring ditch as the remains of a timber domestic structure/building, measuring approximately 6.4m x 4.8m in area. A crushed pot F13 was also defined within the internal area of the ring ditch.

Three features were defined in the small area investigated outside (and to the south) of the ring ditch - a shallow feature F11, pit F9 and (possible) gully F10. F11, a small shallow feature (pit or post-hole?) outside the ring ditch F1, produced several sherds of LBA pottery and a deposit of horsebean (Vicia faba L. var. minor). A sample of charred horsebean produced a radiocarbon date of 1130-790 cal BC (two sigma: 2760 + 80 BP, HAR-2502).

The excavations produced a total of c.1,200 prehistoric sherds (6.25kg). The great majority of the pottery (930 sherds weighing 4.671kg) was recovered from L2. The prehistoric pottery is of a Late Bronze Age date, with the exception of one small rim sherd which might be part of a rolled rim of an early Neolithic bowl. 29 fragments of worked flint were recovered from the excavation. Small finds included three biconcial spindle whorls (one was only a fragment), a perforated baked clay object, a pottery counter (Roman greyware) and an Anglo-Saxon marvered bead (dated to the 6th or 7th century AD). All of these were from L2 with the exception of the bead from L1 (ploughsoil). In addition to the bead, a small assemblage of early Anglo-Saxon pottery (16 sherds weighing 68g, and representing between 10 and 15 vessels) was recovered from L2. The pottery is exclusively organic-tempered in fabric, undecorated and probably 6th or 7th century AD in date. Twenty-three sherds (422g) of Roman pottery were recovered, including sherds of samian and probable Dressel 20 amphora, but none was stratified in features. There were also 32 sherds (311g) of unstratified medieval and later pottery.

In addition, 32 sherds of medieval and later pottery weighing a total of 311g were recovered from L1 and L2.

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> AP: CUCAP. 1969. AXQ48, 49.
  • <2> EXCAV REPORT: Brooks, H (CAT). 2001. A Bronze Age occupation site at Frog Hall Farm, Fingringhoe, Essex: 1975-76 excavations.. CAT Report 123.
  • <3> Article in serial: Brooks, Howard. 2002. A Bronze Age and Saxon occupation site at Frog Hall Farm, Fingringhoe.. Essex Archaeology and History 33, 54-62.

Finds (4)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Related Monuments/Buildings (5)

Related Events/Activities (1)

Record last edited

May 14 2020 7:44AM

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