Strategic Support for Marine Development Management: Palaeolithic archaeology and landscape reconstruction offshore

Author(s): Rachel Bynoe, Michael J Grant, Justin K Dix

The beach replenishment programme from Clacton-on-Sea to Holland-on-Sea, Essex, carried out between 2014 and 2015, has resulted in the appearance and collection of both Pleistocene mammalian remains and stone tools, including Early Middle Palaeolithic Levallois; one of the largest in the country (Scott pers. comm.). The sands used in this coastal protection scheme derived from offshore Licence Area 447. As such, this raised questions surrounding the measures of mitigation that had been in place for Area 447, the subsequent beach replenishment programme during the marine licence application stage, and the potential to recover information from pre-existing, split-open vibrocores. Due to these concerns, Historic England commissioned the University of Southampton (Project 7738, led by Dr Rachel Bynoe) to assess the existing datasets available for Area 447 to permit the reconstruction of a narrative around the formation of the archaeological deposits extracted from Area 447 and their subsequent use, which would in turn help understand why the industry methodologies used at the time and the associated curatorial process did not identify this archaeological resource.

Report Number:
Research Report
Geoarchaeology Palaeolithic Marine


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