Channel Tunnel Rail Link Section 1

Stuart Foreman, 2004 (updated 2009)

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Snarkhurst Wood, Hollingbourne, Kent - Integrated Site Report


Kiln during excavation at Snarkhurst Wood.

As part of an extensive programme of archaeological investigation carried out in advance of the construction of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link (Channel Tunnel Rail Link -CTRL-), Oxford Archaeology (formerly Oxford Archaeological Unit) was commissioned to undertake a strip, map and sample excavation at South of Snarkhurst Wood in Kent. The excavation was carried out between January and February 1999, under the project management of Rail Link Engineering on behalf of Union Railways (South) Limited (a subsidiary of London and Continental Railways).

The occupation uncovered upon the site was principally of late Iron Age and Roman date. However, activity within the area since prehistoric times was suggested by the retrieval of an assemblage of redeposited worked flint ranging from the Mesolithic to early Bronze Age. Two pits may relate to middle Bronze Age occupation.

Late Iron Age and early Roman activity was identified in the form of a rural occupation area defined by enclosure ditches and a possible trackway. Associated discrete features include a circular post structure, two four-post structures, a domestic oven and a few pits and postholes. These remains are likely to represent the northern extent of a small scale, low status rural settlement. One cremation pit related to this phase was located c 200 m to the north-west of the enclosure. Few changes seem to occur in the few years following the Roman Conquest.

Some time after AD50, some of the enclosure ditches seem to have fallen into disuse to be replaced by a less complex system of ditches. Another possible enclosure may have been dug during this phase, next to the first one. Discrete features of early to middle Roman date included three four-post structures and a few pits. Roman activity seems to have ceased on the site around AD250.

Post-Roman activity was represented by a few field boundary ditches of early medieval and post-medieval date.

The fieldwork events covered by this report are:

  • South of Snarkhurst Wood (ARC SNK99) - Excavation
  • South of Snarkhurst Wood Watching Brief - Area 420 (ARC WB420/66+300-67+100) - Watching Brief
  • Musket Lane Watching Brief - Area 420 (ARC WB420/67+100-68+10) - Watching Brief

Other material from the programme linked to this report.

Phase 2

Specialist Research Reports

Below is a list of specialist research reports associated with this report.

Roman Pottery Ceramics
Lithics Lithics
Small Finds Small Finds
Human Remains Human Remains
Integrated Site Report

The integrated site report and data for this site can be found on the downloads page.

Phase 1

Evaluation and Interim Excavation Data

Below is a list of other evaluation and interim excavation data from sites and field work events associated with this report.

Crismill Lane (ARC CSM99) Evaluation
East of Hockers Lane (ARC EHL99) Evaluation
Land South of Snarkhurst Wood (ARC SNK95) Evaluation
South of Snarkhurst Wood (ARC SNK99) Excavation