Test Pit 26 - 2 North End
The pit was dug behind Mill Cottage, which used to be occupied by the miller that worked at Topcliffe Mill. A lane led from the cottage to the river, upstream of the mill.
The pottery from this test pit included 11 sherds of Glazed Red Earthenware and two Victorian-era sherds.
The other finds included nails and other metal scraps, plastic, brick, tile, coal and some possible worked stone. The faunal assemblage comprised a single unidentifiable bone of a cattle-sized animal.
This was one of very few pits in the village to show no evidence for activity until the post-medieval period, and even after this it seems likely the area was only ever used as fields. Located on land in the gap between the main southern cluster of village houses and the Church to the north, the pottery finds from this pit agree well with finds from other test pits in this area, including test pits 4, 15 and 22 that collectively suggest this area has only ever been used as fields, beginning perhaps as early as the Roman period. The finds from this pit thus contribute towards the emerging picture suggesting that a gap of open fields existed for much of the last 2,000 years between the main village core and the village church, the latter of which also has two moated manorial sites near to it that would have been occupied by relatively rich families. This may imply a degree of spatial separation between the ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’ of Meldreth during Medieval times.
For an overview of the site and finds, please click on the image of the exhibition poster which is the first image in the gallery below.
For detailed analysis of the finds, please see the results sheet for this pit, which is available as a download at the bottom of this page.
For reports and maps relating to all of the test pits, please see the documents available on our results page.
Dig slowed by roots, but interesting pottery found.
Hit a layer of flint, possibly part of a road, but little found.
Please click on a photograph to display a larger image.