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Newsletter, January 2009 (Issue 174)

Waterfront Archaeology


From a lecture at University Campus Suffolk, History Department by Rod Gardner of Suffolk Archaeological Unit

Excavations under what has become the Dance East auditorium and adjacent flats revealed extensive evidence of earlier uses. Importantly, the foundations of a late medieval building, probably a merchant's house, were unearthed together with a number of wooden structures. Predominant amongst the timbers were a series of in situ hurdles running for at least 30 metres along an earlier quayside. Early indications are that they are Middle or Late Saxon revetments. Previous Anglo-Saxon waterfront features have been found at this level preserved by being waterlogged.

The bases of other wooden structures were also found and Rod Gardner showed slides indicating their position, a few metres south of College Street. Unfortunately, excavations under Bartholomew Wharf (the Ipswich Society Award winner in College Street) were disappointing because of previous basements on the site. Substantial high medieval septaria-built walls were found on the site of Cranfield's garage between Star Lane and Key Street. There is a planning application for this site of some 400 units of student accommodation.

    Front cover of issue 174 Cover, issue 174

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