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Monument record MDR4562 - Medieval occupation site, Full Street, Derby

Type and Period (3)

  • (Saxon to Post Medieval - 410 AD? to 1900 AD)
  • (Medieval to Georgian - 1066 AD to 1800 AD)
  • (Medieval to Georgian - 1066 AD to 1800 AD)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

SK 3532 3640. In 1972 investigation of an area of 480 square metres on the south-west corner of Full Street, Derby (referred to as Full St. 72) where it runs into the Market Square, was possible due to demolition in advance of construction of the new Civic Centre. Preliminary investigation revealed a complex of pits dating from the later 11th century onwards and a stone-lined well of c.1500. In view of this and the paucity of previous excavation within the medieval town (3), an open area excavation was led by R A Hall. This produced a medieval and post-medieval series of pottery and other finds, including a ring-headed pin (of possible pre-Conquest date) and a bronze bowl of c.1200. The assemblage of stratified pottery from forty-one pits and wells represent, on the basis of typology and association, a cross-section of 11th to later 18th century wares. It is suggested that this pottery represents the domestic refuse from tenements close to the Market Place. Wood, leather and textile remains were preserved due to the damp conditions of the well. Evidence for building, was slight; only one tenuous indication of a building, or more probably, a property division, was encountered. All traces of the medieval and later buildings to which the pits related have been removed by modern cellars. (2) Although archaeological evidence for the earlier, Saxon occupation of Derby is very slight and limited to a few objects possibly assignable to the period, some reference to the town occur in pre-conquest sources. The Saxon burgh is first recorded in the chronicle of Aethelweard in 871 as Northworthy and was thus the site of an English settlement before attaining burgh status. The site of Northworthy cannot be precisely defined, but the position of St. Alkmund's Church indicates the general area of settlement. (5) A mint at Derby is known to have produced coins between 959 and 973 AD, (6) and the fortification of Derby by 917 is implied by the Mercian Register (1). The line of the medieval defences is unknown, but the medieval town ditch is referred to in the Darley Abbey cartulary. Site reports and finds from the Full Street excavation are deposited with Derby Museum. (7)

Sources/Archives (8)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Turner, H. L. 1970. Town Defences in England & Wales. p119.
  • <2> Article in serial: Hall, R & Coppack, G. 1972. 'Excavations at Full Street, Derby', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. Volume 92, pp 29-77.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Heighway, C M (ed). 1972. The Erosion of History. p 68.
  • <4> Article in serial: Cherry, J & Webster, G. 1973. Medieval Archaeology, 17. Volume 17. p166-7.
  • <5> Article in serial: Hall, R. 1974. 'The Pre-Conquest Burgh of Derby', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. Volume 94, pp 16-23.
  • <6> Bibliographic reference: Wilson, D. M.. 1976. Archaeology of Anglo-Saxon England. p138.
  • <7> Bibliographic reference: Schofield, J et al. 1981. Recent Archaeological Research in English Towns.
  • <8> Bibliographic reference: TPAT 2358.



Grid reference SK 3532 3640 (point) (Centre)

Related Monuments/Buildings (0)

Related Events/Activities (1)

  • EDR395

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External Links (0)

Record last edited

Jul 15 2019 9:47AM

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