Record Details

NHER Number:17739
Type of record:Monument
Name:Cropmarks of possible Roman farmstead

Summary

Aerial photographs from 1977, 1990 and 1996 recorded the cropmarks of a possible Roman period farmstead. The site consists of a rectilinear ditched enclosure, partially subdivided into a number of smaller enclosures. In the immediate vicinity of the farmstead, a series of associated ditches appear to define further small rectilinear enclosures. In its wider setting, the site lies in the midst of an extensive field system (NHER 38499). Elements of the field system may date from the Iron Age to Roman period, although a paucity of finds from the area means that neither the potential farmstead nor the field system can be dated precisely.

Images - none

Location

Grid Reference:TG 2349 3540
Map Sheet:TG23NW
Parish:THORPE MARKET, NORTH NORFOLK, NORFOLK

Full description

30 July 1981, 12 July 1990. NAU Aerial Photography.
Cropmarks of a ditched enclosure (together with those of drainage).
D. Edwards (NAU).

28 June 1996. NLA aerial photography.
Cropmarks of a rectangular ditched enclosure with internal sub-divisions visible.
Possibly indicating a Roman farmstead, although this is by no means clear.
S. Massey (NLA), 9 October 2001.

March 2004, Norfolk NMP
A rectilinear ditched enclosure, subdivided internally into a number of compartments, is visible as cropmarks on aerial photographs (S1-3), centred at TG 2350 3540. A series of ditches in the immediate vicinity of the enclosure, such as those centred at TG 2353 3544, appear to define further, small rectilinear enclosures associated with the principal enclosure. As a whole, the site appears to be a farmstead, with the principal enclosure (defined by the widest ditch) representing a domestic settlement, and the outlying ditches defining ancillary enclosures which may have had a domestic or economic function. This in turn is surrounded by a more extensive field system (NHER 38499). The rectilinear plan of the farmstead and its general morphology suggests a Romano-British date, but it could in fact date to any period from the Romano-British to early post-medieval, after which this area was enclosed to become the northern part of Gunton Park (NHER 30438; S4). Few finds have been recovered from the area, although a Romano-British coin was found 350m to the north-west of the farmstead.

The principal enclosure is rectilinear in plan and measures 80m long and 40m wide. It may have been entered at its south-east corner; a break in the ditch at its south-west corner is the result of the cropmark being masked. The western end and north-east corner of the enclosure are each divided into at least two compartments, measuring 16m by 9m to 24m by 17.5m. Other ditches may define further compartments or may represent an earlier or later phase of activity. The compartments lie to each side of a more open central area. This is crossed diagonally by two narrow ditches which could define a trackway or drains, or perhaps date to a separate phase. Three pits have been mapped within a narrow, open-ended compartment in the north-east corner of the enclosure; it is possible that these are geological rather than archaeological in nature. A curvilinear ditch of unknown function on the north side of the enclosure may also be a geological cropmark.

The cropmarks of the subsidiary enclosures surrounding the farmstead are too discontinuous to be interpreted in any detail. Possible annexe enclosures are visible along the northern and southern sides of the farmstead. To its north-east (centred at TG 2353 3544) a group of small enclosures, or several enclosures of varying date, appear to be bounded to their east by a ditch. This ditch, which forms part of the field system surrounding the site (NHER 38499), shares an alignment with the farmstead and associated ditches and is likely to be a contemporary feature.
(S1-4)
S. Tremlett (NMP), 18 March 2004

Monument Types

  • DITCH (Unknown date)
  • DITCHED ENCLOSURE (Unknown date)
  • DRAIN (Unknown date)
  • ENCLOSURE (Unknown date)
  • FARMSTEAD (Unknown date)
  • PIT (Unknown date)
  • RECTANGULAR ENCLOSURE (Unknown date)
  • RECTILINEAR ENCLOSURE (Unknown date)
  • SETTLEMENT (Unknown date)
  • TRACKWAY (Unknown date)
  • DITCHED ENCLOSURE (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • DRAIN (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • FARMSTEAD (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • PIT (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • RECTANGULAR ENCLOSURE (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • RECTILINEAR ENCLOSURE (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • SETTLEMENT (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • TRACKWAY (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)

Associated Finds - none

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---Aerial Photograph: TG2335 A,B-E.
---Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A. (NLA). 1996. TG 2325J - M.
---Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
<S1>Oblique Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A.. 1977. NHER TG 2335A (NLA 52/AKJ24) 30-JUL-1977.
<S2>Oblique Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A.. 1990. NHER TG 2335B (NLA 272/GDG10) 12-JUL-1990.
<S3>Oblique Aerial Photograph: Edwards, D.A.. 1996. NHER TG 2335J (NLA 365/JFK16) 28-JUN-1996.
<S4>Designation: English Heritage. Register of Parks and Gardens of Special Historic Interest in England..

Related records - none

Find out more...

Norfolk County Council logo Heritage Lottery Fund logo

Powered by HBSMR-web and the HBSMR Gateway from exeGesIS SDM Ltd, and mojoPortal CMS
© 2007 - 2021 Norfolk Historic Environment Service