Record Details

NHER Number:20651
Type of record:Monument
Name:Site of Middle and Late Saxon settlement and multi-period finds


Fieldwalking results suggest this is the site of a Middle Saxon settlement, which continued to develop throughout the Late Saxon period, until the settlement was abandoned in the early 12th century. The settlement was a small, nucleated hamlet or village, surrounded by arable fields. This settlement continues under NHER 20653. Prehistoric flints, a Lower Palaeolithic flint handaxe, a Roman coin, fragments of pottery dating from the Roman period to the post medieval period, medieval bricks, and a quern, a knife and slag of unknown date, found during field walking and metal detecting.

Images - none


Grid Reference:TF 90 13
Map Sheet:TF91SW

Full description

1980, 1983 and 1985. Ordnance Survey field Great Fransham 225. Field walking in varying conditions.
Very large quantities of sherds including medieval wares, Roman sherds (some decorated); Late Saxon Thetford-type including rouletted; Ipswich ware; post medieval wares including glazed red earthenware; prehistoric sherds and flints; much lava fragments; medieval brick; slag iron knife.
Information from (S1). See also (S2) and (S3).
Found and identified by A. Rogerson (NAU)
E. Rose (NAU) 10 September 1984.

1985. Stray Find.
Found on surface (Context 41):
1 Lower Palaeolithic flint handaxe. Acheulian, stained and patinated, two thermal flakes removed on edges and large one at base. See drawing (S4).
Identified by J. J. Wymer (NAU), see description in file.
Compiled by E. Rose (NAU) 26 April 1985. Information from (S1).
Also noted on (S5) and in (S6) and (S7), although no additional information is given.
Amended by P. Watkins (HES), 28 August 2014.

1989. Further gridded field walking.
Contexts 50 to 54 to produce 'dot density map' of Middle Saxon pottery.
See (S2).
Roman coin found during walking in Context 52.

29 November 1989. Metal detecting survey of eastern end, before tree planting, Context 55.
No significant finds.
A. Rogerson (NLA) March 1992

October 1995. Metal-detecting.
Drilled and rolled cereal 40% visibility.

Western area:
8 worked flints.
Thetford-type 1 jar rim, 1 sagging base, 1 body sherd with diamond roulette.
2 body sherds probably Middle Saxon sandy.
2 body sherds medieval unglazed.
2 body sherds glazed Grimston.
1 body sherd late medieval/early post medieval

Eastern area:
2 worked flints.
1 Ipswich sandy rim.
1 probable Middle Saxon sandy rim.
Thetford-type 4 jar rims, 1 sagging base, 4 body sherds (including 1 storage jar).
4 body sherds probably Thetford-type.
A.Rogerson (NLA) 29 November 1995.

According to (S3) this is the only Middle Saxon site in Fransham. The settlement developed from the 7th century as a small, nucleated linear village, surrounded by arable fields. During the Late Saxon period, the settlement seems to have expanded, and was one of the two main centres of settlement in the parish in the Late Saxon period, both of which had been abandoned by about 1100.
See (S3) and NHER 20653.
S. Spooner (NLA) 14 December 2005

Monument Types

  • FINDSPOT (Undated)
  • FINDSPOT (Lower Palaeolithic - 1000000 BC to 150001 BC)
  • FINDSPOT (Prehistoric - 1000000 BC to 42 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Late Prehistoric - 4000 BC to 42 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2351 BC)
  • FINDSPOT (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Middle Saxon - 651 AD to 850 AD)
  • SETTLEMENT (Middle Saxon to Late Saxon - 651 AD to 1065 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Late Saxon - 851 AD to 1065 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • FINDSPOT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Associated Finds

  • KNIFE (Undated)
  • QUERN (Undated)
  • HANDAXE (Lower Palaeolithic - 500000 BC to 150001 BC)
  • LITHIC IMPLEMENT (Lower Palaeolithic to Late Iron Age - 500000 BC to 42 AD)
  • AXEHEAD (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2351 BC)
  • POT (Late Prehistoric - 4000 BC to 42 AD)
  • COIN (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • POT (Roman - 43 AD to 409 AD)
  • POT (Middle Saxon - 651 AD to 850 AD)
  • POT (Late Saxon - 851 AD to 1065 AD)
  • BRICK (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • POT (Medieval - 1066 AD to 1539 AD)
  • POT (Post Medieval - 1540 AD to 1900 AD)

Protected Status - none

Sources and further reading

---*Fieldwork: Fransham Survey. G225. AJGR.
---Secondary File: Secondary File.
<S1>Record Card: NAU Staff. 1974-1988. Norfolk Archaeological Index Primary Record Card.
<S2>Archive: Fransham Field Walking Boxfile.
<S3>Thesis: Rogerson, A.. 1995. Fransham: an archaeological and historical study of a parish on the Norfolk boulder clay.
<S4>Illustration: Wymer, J. J. 1985. Drawing of a Lower Palaeolithic flint handaxe from Fransham. Paper. 1:1.
<S5>Record Card: Wymer, J. J. Wymer Index Card - Palaeolithic. Fransham.
<S6>Unpublished Contractor Report: 1997. The English Rivers Palaeolithic Project. Regions 8 (East Anglian Rivers) and 11 (Trent Drainage). Wessex Archaeology. p 62.
<S7>Website: TERPS online database. Site 22591.

Related records - none

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