chapter  10
16 Pages

The dyke survey in the northwestern Cambridgeshire fenlands

The dyke survey project (French and Pryor 1993) arose from the extensive excavations on the fen-edge/lower river valley at Fengate in the lower Nene valley (Pryor 1980, 1984) (see Chapter 6), Maxey (Pryor and French 1985) and Etton (Pryor 1998) in the lower Welland valley (see Chapter 7) and the survey work of David Hall for the Fenland Project (Hall 1987). In particular, Hall’s work (ibid.) revealed that many prehistoric sites and landscapes were emerging from beneath later peat cover as a result of drainage and desiccation (see Chapter 11). At the same time, the whole Welland valley team had worked briefly on the Assendelver Polders Project in the Netherlands (Brandt et al. 1987) and had been exposed to a very successful form of dyke survey and extensive augering survey techniques used to prospect for sites in the peatlands of Holland.