Excavations at Thelsford Priory

Description of this historic site

Archaeological excavations uncovered a series of monastic buildings from the Medieval period. Many of them were constructed of timber. Finds included roof tiles, a coin and pottery all dating to the Medieval period. The site is located 700m south east of Wasperton.

Notes about this historic site

1 Excavation in 1966 indicated that about half the area of the Priory precinct was covered by buildings which were either entirely of timber, or with stone footings to support timber superstructure. These conventual buildings had suffered no damage except for continuous ploughing.
2 All these buildings were aligned E-W. It was difficult to identify the exact purpose of each building as encountered in the trial trenches. To the N of the church was an area of metalling with earlier buildings beneath. To the W of the church there was a building with dressed limestone footings whose floor levels showed three periods of destruction, with pottery of 15th and 16th century and a large hearth. Beneath this building was evidence for an earlier building with 13th-14th century pottery. At the W extremity of the site was a stone-lined cesspit containing bones and 15th century pottery. A coin of Edward I was found nearby. Four other pits were found on the site. Also at the W was a large hollow filled with ashy soil, roof tile, building debris and 16th century pottery. A well-made drain led from the complex of buildings to the W of the church towards the brook.
3 Further excavation in 1972 on the W of the site demonstrated that destruction debris extended 15m into this area and beneath this were traces of timber buildings. Three definite structures included a small hut, a sunken clay linear area and a lowered area containing roof tiles and an iron fish harpoon.
4 Plan.
5 Area of SAM revised 1996.

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