Monument record MDR6396 - Ash Tree Cave, Burntfield Grips, Whitwell
Type and Period (4)
- CAVE (Middle Palaeolithic to Roman - 150000 BC to 409 AD)
- BURIAL (Neolithic - 4000 BC to 2351 BC)
- LITHIC SCATTER (Middle Palaeolithic to Late Bronze Age - 150000 BC to 701 BC)
- OCCUPATION SITE (Middle Palaeolithic to Roman - 150000 BC to 409 AD)
Ash Tree Cave is situated at the north west side of a dry v-shaped valley known as Burntfield Grips, near Whitwell, and was excavated by Armstrong 1949-1957 when Neolithic burials, a submegalithic cist, Roman and Iron Age pottery, Mesolithic, Creswellian and Mousterian horizons were found. (1) Bronze Age pottery was found on the platform outside the cave during excavations 1959-60. (3) Site No. 2 opposite to Ash Tree Cave was found to be a small rock shelter with a Mesolithic occupation level and small fleckes of charcoal, possibly indicating casual occupation, beneath glacial material. 'Ash Tree Cave' surveyed at 1/2500 at SK 5148676147 The rock shelter could not be identified. Sheffield Museum hold all the finds. The supposed 'Creswellian' artifacts from Ash Tree Cave include as backed tools only Mesolithic 'microliths' and a 'petit tranchet derivative' of more Neolithic aspect. Cave at Burntfield Grips discovered by Dr. A Court and excavated by him and A L Armstrong sporadically between 1938 and 1956. Excavation ceased on Armstrong's death. Further unpublished excavation by Riley and West, and the cave. There appears to have been animal occupation only, with no evidence of a contemporary human presence. (10) Ash Tree Cave is situated north of Hollin Hill, a few kilometres north-west of Creswell Crags and on the south side of the small dry valley of Burhill Wood. It lies level with the existing valley floor and the small cliffs on either side of the valley are no more than 5m high at any point. The cave itself consists of a relatively large entrance chamber, narrowing into a long, sinuous passage and containing backfill from partial excavations carried out between 1934 and the present. These have produced material from the Mesolithic, Neolithic, Bronze Age, Iron Age and Roman periods, but the main significance of the cave lies in the Palaeolithic remains. These include Later Upper Palaeolithic 'Creswellian', Earlier Upper Palaeolithic and Middle Palaeolithic artefacts and faunal remains. Some material has yet to be processed from earlier excavations, but it is anticipated that this will add to the Palaeolithic evidence. Remnants of unexcavated deposits survive along the cave walls and substantial remains are still intact underneath tip in the area outside the cave entrance. A considerable depth of deposit outside the cave is indicated by excavation trenches which did not reach bedrock until 6.2m below datum. The monument includes all deposits inside the cave, and outside the cave, it includes an area of 6m radius around the mouth of the cave.(14) Associated with SMR sites 15124, 15125, 15126, 15127, 15128.
- <1> SDR7728 Article in serial: Armstrong, A. 1956. 'Report on the excavation of Ash Tree Cave, near Whitwell, Derbyshire, 1947 to 1957', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal.
- <2> SDR8219 Correspondence: Bartlett, J (Sheffield City Museum). 1959. Letter regarding Ash Tree Cave, 19th January, 1959. Letter.
- <3> SDR5833 Bibliographic reference: West, S (East Midlands Committee of Field Archaeologists). 1959. East Midlands Archaeological Bulletin, 1959.
- <5> SDR1637 Article in serial: Armstrong, A. 1953. 'Excavation of prehistoric sites in East Derbyshire, 1953', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal. Volume 74, pp 102-104.
- <6> SDR6383 Personal Observation: F1 JB 22-OCT-65.
- <7> SDR7690 Article in serial: Armstrong, A. 1950. 'Exploration of prehistoric sites in East Derbyshire, 1950', Derbyshire Archaeological Journal.
- <8> SDR10777 Bibliographic reference: Hart, C (NDAT). 1981. The North Derbyshire Archaeological Survey to AD 1500. p19.
- <9> SDR15891 Bibliographic reference:
- <10> SDR8064 Monograph: Jenkinson, R. 1984. Creswell Crags: Late Pleistocene Sites in the East Midlands, British Archaeological Reports 122.
- <11> SDR11124 Index: North Derbyshire Archaeological Trust (NDAT). North Derbyshire Archaeological Trust Index: 1954. 1954.
- <12> SDR1631 Bibliographic reference: Armstrong, A. 1939. Report of the Committee for the Archaeological Exploration of Derbyshire, Dundee, 1939.
- <13> SDR1641 Article in serial: Armstrong, A. 1957. Report of the Excavation of Ash Tree Cave, near Whitwell, Derbyshire.
- <14> SDR18416 Scheduling record: English Heritage. 1991. Scheduling Notification. 13240. Cat. No.: 283.
|Grid reference||Centred SK 5148 7614 (39m by 30m) (Centre)|
|Civil Parish||WHITWELL, BOLSOVER, DERBYSHIRE|
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Record last edited
Jun 12 2017 4:39PM