Archaeological excavations at Wimpole

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Discovering our past during Summer 2018

Wimpole Estate has added another chapter to its long history with plans for a new visitor welcome and gateway to the estate, with a whole new arrival for visitors, including a new car park, are underway.

This ambitious project gave us a rare archaeological opportunity to glimpse at the past layers of Wimpole’s history before moving it well and truly into the future. What did we discover?

Why did we dig at Wimpole?

As part of the planning permission gained for the improvements to the estate, including a new visitor welcome and car park, it was a requirement that we carry out archaeological excavations before any building works begin.

Where did we dig?

Lamp Hill field site of the 2018 archaeology excavation
Lamp Hill field site of the 2018 archaeology excavation
Lamp Hill field site of the 2018 archaeology excavation

We dug in a section of the arable field to the South East of the house. We did not excavate the whole field - a survey carried out in 2015 and previous investigations allowed us to identify the ‘core’ of the settlement site and which parts of it that would be affected by the development.

The initial plan was to excavate and record a measured area of the site, based on the layout of the development and the known archaeology remains. 

Who were the archaeologists?

Oxford Archaeology East, who have worked on various projects at Wimpole for over 30 years, were commissioned to undertake the archaeological excavations on behalf of the National Trust to ensure we recorded any significant remains that lie under the field before the new car park and visitor welcome was built.  

What could you see?

What have we discovered?
listening to an explanation by an archaeologist whilst standing in the trench
What have we discovered?

There was a unique opportunity for people to see the archaeologists in action throughout September 2018 by taking a walk up to the dig site.  

What did we find?