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Ancient finds at Wisley interchange

7 Dec 23 Archaeologists have been having a field day on Balfour Beatty’s £317m M25 junction improvement project in Surrey.

Iron Age vessel recovered from settlement site
Iron Age vessel recovered from settlement site

For more than a year now Balfour Beatty has been working with Oxford Archaeology, casing the site of its new junction 10 on the M25 at Wisley, where it intersects with the A3.

Remains discovered include a late Bronze Age / early Iron Age settlement believed to date from around 1,000 to 500 BC and evidence of post-medieval agricultural practices.

The settlement was discovered just south of the A3, towards the eastern scheme limit.

It comprises the remains of at least five roundhouses, the largest of which has a diameter of about 10 metres. They are defined by ring ditches which were found to overlap each other, exposing the longevity of the settlement. Archaeologists also found re-cuts within a pair of parallel ditches that enclose the site, showing that the settlement was maintained over a prolong period of time. 

Jonathan Wade, project lead for the M25 Jct 10/A3 improvement scheme, said: “The farmstead and artefacts we have unearthed near Painshill are hugely exciting and significant finds as it helps to further shape our understanding of what life in the region was like over this period in history, and we can see how the site developed through different periods of time.”

Oxford Archaeology project manager John Boothroyd added: "It’s great to find such an interesting site and a reminder that through modern progress we can gain fascinating insights into our past.”

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