The Deer Park, Weston Park Golf Club
Weston Longville, Norfolk

Site Code
ENF 139903
OASIS Number
240877
Site Type
Evaluation
Period
Neolithic, Bronze Age, Post Medieval,
Report Number
2016_026

Summary

An archaeological trial trench evaluation carried out to assess the archaeological potential of 27.5ha of pasture land adjacent to Weston Park Golf Club, Weston Longville, Norfolk, identified a surviving archaeological horizon across the site at a depth of 0.4m-0.7m. Archaeological deposits consisted of evidence for widespread and dispersed prehistoric activity, principally in the Early to Middle Neolithic and Late Neolithic/Early Bronze Age periods, and for post-medieval land management.

The prehistoric evidence consisted of a highly scattered spread of pits distributed across five of the six pasture fields, and which may be contemporary with a range of other undated, and often indistinct, pits and ditches, the latter hinting at a possible series of fields or enclosures. Of particular note was an isolated pit which contained a near intact Beaker pot of exceptionally small size, one small group of pits including three in a linear alignment, and a large natural hollow whose fill contained a large quantity of Neolithic struck flint, indicating flint axe preparation was possibly being undertaken in the vicinity. A degree of truncation to prehistoric deposits was evident, with a substantial proportion of the sites finds assemblage being recovered from overlying subsoil and topsoil deposits.

The evaluation trenching showed that potential areas of interest indicated by an earlier geophysical survey were largely the result of geological variation and natural disturbance. Two discrete cropmarks noted in the Norfolk Historic Environment Record, one thought to represent a ring ditch within a barrow group extending into the southeastern field and the other a small rectangular structure or enclosure, did not correspond to any anomaly in the geophysical survey or physical feature in the evaluation trenching and are presumed to have been caused by natural variation.

The evaluation showed very little evidence for activity on the site after the prehistoric period, with only a small quantity of Roman pottery at the top of a prehistoric pit. The Deer Park therefore does not appear to have been the location for any significant activity in the Roman, Anglo-Saxon or medieval periods, despite known nearby findspots of these dates in the surrounding region. By the late 18th century the site is known to have been referred to as Brecks, before its enclosure as a series of fields attached to the adjacent parkland of Weston House, and the remaining features and artefactual evidence reflect the sites known recent land use.