Site of Copston Parva Deserted Medieval Settlement

Description of this historic site

The site of the Medieval deserted settlement of Copston Parva. The settlement is known from documentary evidence. It was situated 1km east of Wolvey Heath.

Notes about this historic site

1 Dugdale records that N from Wolvey lies Copston Parva, now a depopulated place and only known by the name of Copston Fields. Here was a chapel (PRN 5474). Area centred SP445890.
2 Location unknown (U), small quantity of documentary evidence for village’s former existence.
3 A field at about the above grid reference is called ‘The Township’.
4 The Wolvey Historical Society have been fieldwalking the site during 1985 and 1986. Although all traces of earthworks have been lost, surface traces of the village survive in the form of a dense concentration of Medieval pottery at the above grid reference.
5 The site was walked with a grid of twenty metre squares. The density of material, particularly pottery, indicates that this is the site of a deserted medieval village or hamlet. The pottery is predominantly in sandy wares of an oxidised nature – probably Coventry products. Nuneaton A wares also occur and the pottery is probably broadly c1250-1300 with intrusive sherds of Midland Purple (c1350-1450). A piece of daub and fragment of roof tile were also found. The settlement was probably of mid 13th century to early/mid 15th century. The pottery scatter is about 60/70 by 80m and this could indicate that the site was a small hamlet. Alternatively the gridded area may only represent a part of the site. Depopulation probably occurred in the late 14th century/early 15th century. The settlement was probably poor with timber, daub and thatch houses.
6 Negative archaeological observation at Copston Lodge Farm on the site of the medieval settlement in March 1994.
7 Fieldwalking in the field south of the farm recorded a big spread of medieval pottery. 786 sherds were recorded, concentrated in the north-west quadrant of the area and in parts of the north-east quadrant. Analysis of the pottery by Stephanie Ratkai suggested occupation on the site from possibly the 12th century but certainly from the first half of the 13th century. This occupation continued up until the 16th century, although most of the sherds dated to the 13th century. The pottery found was mostly locally produced with a majority of the sherds from cooking pots. Scatters of Stockingford Shale slate and roof tile, including glazed roof tile were collected from the north-east quadrant of the site, suggesting some buildings of status in this area.

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