A46 Newark to Widmerpool Road Improvement scheme (2009)

Wessex Archaeology, Cotswold Archaeology, 2017

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Wessex Archaeology, Cotswold Archaeology (2017) A46 Newark to Widmerpool Road Improvement scheme (2009) [data-set]. York: Archaeology Data Service [distributor] https://doi.org/10.5284/1046307

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A46 Newark to Widmerpool Road Improvement scheme (2009)

Cotswold Wessex Archaeology, a Joint Venture between Cotswold Archaeology and Wessex Archaeology, were appointed as the archaeological contractors to Balfour Beatty Civil Engineering Limited, employed by the Highways Agency as lead contractor on the A46 Newark to Widmerpool Improvements. The project comprised on-line and offline improvements to an approximately 29km stretch of the A46 trunk road between Newark and Widmerpool, Nottinghamshire.

The course of the A46 trunk road in south-east Nottinghamshire follows the line of the Fosse Way, a Roman road linking Lincoln and Leicester. The project provided a rare opportunity to investigate not only how the construction of the Roman road influenced patterns of settlement, economy and agriculture during the period of Roman occupation, but also how those patterns had developed through the preceding prehistoric period, and in turn how they helped shape the post-Romano-British landscape up to the present day. These road improvements, as previously, largely reproduced the line of the ancient road almost two millennia after its construction.

Yet, the archaeological evidence revealed during the investigations along its course – of flint working in the Upper Palaeolithic, Mesolithic and Neolithic; barrow construction and burial in the Early Bronze Age; land division starting in the Late Bronze Age; settlement and agriculture in the Iron Age and, subsequently, in the Romano-British period flanking the Roman road and around the town of Margidunum; funerary practices of Romano-British and Saxon date; and land use from the medieval period to the present – has thrown light on longer-term patterns of continuity and change in the settlement and exploitation of the landscape.