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Monument record MDR112 - Etches' Cave, north-west of Dowal Hall farm, Hartington Middle Quarter

Type and Period (2)

  • (Upper Palaeolithic to Late Iron Age - 40000 BC to 42 AD)
  • (Prehistoric - 500000 BC to 42 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

SK 0749 6755: Etches' Cave: ?Palaeolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age occupation and finds. Etches' Cave was located at SK 07496755, on the south rock face. It has a 1m by 1m modern and locked entrance, the door bears the name 'Etches Cave'. The local farmer stated that "no finds have been made here but an excavation is planned for the future". Cave entrances surveyed at 1:2500. (1). Explorations at Etches' cave took place sporadically between 1958 and 1963. Artefacts from the site were found mainly on the extensive dump outside the cave and included five pieces of flint, three of which showed signs of having been worked. Potsherds were also found, several of which were though to have formed part of a collared urn of Middle Bronze Age date. Two worked antler fragments were found in association with broken animal bones and charcoal. One was thought to resemble the haft of an Early Iron Age or Roman knife. A further piece of worked bone also appeared to have been hollowed out for use as a knife handle, again probably of Early Iron Age date. A wide range of mammalian and other faunal remains included examples of bear, reindeer, hare, wolf, fox, badger, stout, pig, ox, deer, rabbit and cat. It was concluded that in post-glacial times the cave was sporadically occupied by animals and human beings, with three possible habitation layers being identified, namely Neolithic, Middle Bronze Age and Early Iron Age. Subsequent infilling rendered the cave too cramped for habitation. (2). There is also a possible bone maglemosian harpoon point. The finds are held at Nottingham University Museum, accession no. 1965.28. (3,4).

Sources/Archives (4)

  • <1> Personal Observation: F1 FRH 25-FEB-66.
  • <2> Article in serial: Pernetta, J C. 1966. 'Report on the findings at Etches' Cave, Dowel Dale, Derbyshire', Peakland Archaeological Society Newsletter. No. 21, pp 11-16, plan, fig..
  • <3> Monograph: Challis, A & Harding, W. 1975. 'Later Prehistory from the Trent to the Tyne', British Archaeological Report 20. Part 2. p34.
  • <4> Index: NDAT. 1055. 1055.



Grid reference SK 0749 6755 (point) (Centre)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR1377

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External Links (0)

Record last edited

Mar 9 2015 10:23AM

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