Record Details

NHER Number:2744
Type of record:Find Spot
Name:Palaeolithic handaxes, Thetford Warren (Thetford, marginal)


Four Palaeolithic handaxes were found at an unknown location on Thetford Warren in 1869. These objects are now held by the Norwich Castle Museum. The Thetford museum also holds at least one object of possible Palaeolithic date that is recorded as being found on Thetford Warren.

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Full description

1869. Stray Finds.
The Norwich Castle museum holds four Palaeolithic handaxes that were bequethed to them by a Mr A. Fison in 1912 (NWHCM : 1912.129 : A). These objects were apparently originally found in 1869 and were exhibited at a meeting of the Prehistoric Society of East Anglia in December 1912 (S1). The exact location of these discoveries is unknown, Thetford Warren covering an area of several square kilometres. It is however noted on (S2) that these "Group I handaxes" were "Found at depth of 15ft (4.6m)". This information was presumably taken from the museum records and suggests that these objects were most likely recovered from one of the quarries that were open around this time. In 1897 Evans (S3) noted that a considerable quantity of gravel had been dug on Thetford Warren, although he was no aware of any artefacts having been recovered.
These handaxes are also noted in (S4), (S5), (S6) and (S7), although no additional information is given.
Amended by P. Watkins (HES), 1 July 2013.

?1930. Stray Find.
A note on (S2) suggests that the Thetford Museum also holds Palaeolithic material from Thetford Warren. Only one find in the Thetford Museum appears to have this provenance: an ovate flint object that was possibly found during the 1930s (THEHM : 1979.100.1). According to the museum records this object is labelled as being Palaeolithic, but this is seen as doubtful.
P. Watkins (HES), 1 July 2013.

Monument Types

  • FINDSPOT (Lower Palaeolithic to Middle Palaeolithic - 500000 BC to 40001 BC)

Associated Finds

  • HANDAXE (Lower Palaeolithic to Middle Palaeolithic - 500000 BC to 40001 BC)
  • LITHIC IMPLEMENT (Lower Palaeolithic to Middle Palaeolithic - 500000 BC? to 40001 BC?)

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Archive: Ordnance Survey Staff. 1933-1979?. Ordnance Survey Record Cards.
---Archive: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
---Archive: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Palaeolithic.
<S1>Article in Serial: 1913. Summary of Proceedings. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society of East Anglia. Vol I Pt III (for 1912-13) pp 378-382. p 380.
<S2>Archive: Clarke, R. R. and NCM Staff. 1933-1973. Norwich Castle Museum Record Card - Palaeolithic.
<S3>Publication: Evans, J. 1897. The Ancient Stone Implements, Weapons and Ornaments of Great Britain. 2nd Edition. p 556.
<S4>Monograph: Roe, D. A. 1968. A Gazetteer of British Lower and Middle Palaeolithic Sites. CBA Research Report. No 8. p 240.
<S5>Publication: Wymer, J. J. 1985. Palaeolithic Sites of East Anglia. p 115.
<S6>Unpublished Document: Wessex Archaeology. 1996. The English Rivers Palaeolithic Project. Regions 9 (Great Ouse) and 12 (Yorkshire and the Lincolnshire Wolds). LLO-2, No. 15.
<S7>Website: TERPS online database. Site 22686.

Related records - none

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