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Prehistoric Riseley

The Bedfordshire Historic Environment Record [HER] contains information on the county's historic buildings and landscapes and summaries of each entry can now be found online as part of the Heritage Gateway website. Prehistoric evidence of settlement in Riseley comes from two main sources, artefacts and cropmarks showing disturbances in the soil which indicate the presence of ditches.

The artefacts found in the parish are as follows. Note that flint, because it is readily available and easily worked was used for tools from earliest times through even into the Iron Age:

  • A re-touched flint blade found in 2005 probably dates from the Mesolithic era [HER 21271];
  • A group of 21 flint blades and fragments found in 2005 are probably Mesolithic [HER 21343];
  • A roughly semi-circular flint blade core may belong to the early Mesolithic period [HER 23147];
  • Three re-touched flint flakes found in 2005 are probably Mesolithic [HER 21349];
  • Anincomplete flint microlith (very small stone tool) is probably Mesolithic [HER 21341];
  • A flint core from which flakes for working had been removed probably dates to the Mesolithic or Neolithic eras [HER 21272];
  • Nine broad flint blades found in 2005 are probably Mesolithic or Neolithic [HER 21284];
  • A semi-circular flint core found in 2005 may be late Mesolithic or early Neolithic [HER 21346];
  • Two flint flakes found in 2005, found in association with tools and cores of Mesolithic or Neolithic date are probably from the same time-frame [HER 21269];
  • Seven flint cores found in 2005 are probably late Mesolithic or early Neolithic [HER 21342];
  • A group of flint flakes, waste products of tool making, found in 2005 may be late Mesolithic or early Neolithic [HER 21344];
  • A slender flint blade found by fieldwalking in 2005 may be late Mesolithic or early Neolithic [HER 21348];
  • A flint core found in 2005 may be late Mesolithic or early Neolithic [HER 21350];
  • Half a flint core found in 2005 may be late Mesolithic or early Neolithic [HER 21270];
  • A group of19 re-touched flint flakes of differing size found in 2005 are probably Neolithic in date [HER 21345];
  • A serrated flint flake found in 2005 probably dates from the Neolithic [HER 21273];
  • Four waste flint flakes found in 2004 may be Neolithic [HER 21519];
  • A worked U-shaped flint found in 2005 may be late Neolithic or early Bronze Age in date [HER 21275];
  • A retouched flint flake found in 2004 is probably Neolithic [HER 21520];
  • A flint scraper found in 2005 is probably Neolithic [HER 21274];
  • A fragment of a copper alloy socketed axe found in 2007 belongs to the middle or late Bronze Age [HER 21015]

The potential occupation sites highlighted by cropmarks are as follows:

  • Cropmarks of a complex of enclosures north-west of Lodge Farm may be prehistoric as they seem to lie under later ridge and furrow marks [HER 12644];
  • A complex group of cropmarks identified north of Dag Lane may be prehistoric [HER 12647];
  • Three circular cropmarks beside a stream near Coldhams Lodge Farm, visible on aerial photographs of 1945 may be prehistoric [HER 12652];
  • Now destroyed circular cropmarks west of Worleys Wood almost on the parish boundary are visible on aerial photographs from 1945 [HER 12655];
  • Cropmarks of a series of rectangular enclosures strung out along a linear feature which may be a trackway, on a ridge top north-west of Keysoepark Wood may be prehistoric [HER 14014];
  • A complex of cropmarks north-west of Dag Lane may be prehistoric [HER 14061];
  • Cropmarks of a large rectangular enclosure with the remains of a smaller enclosure attached near an L-shaped water feature known as Slaneys Pond may be prehistoric [HER 14064];
  • Two separate rectangular enclosures south-east of Worley Wood may be prehistoric [HER 14065];
  • A large rectangular enclosure west of High Barn Farm may be prehistoric [HER 15044];
  • Two lines appearing as a cropmark south-west of the village may represent a prehistoric trackway as they lead to other possibly prehistoric cropmarks [HER 16574];
  • A small square enclosure north-east of Arnoe Farm may be prehistoric [HER 16575];
  • A cropmark of a D-shaped enclosure and a further enclosure with curved lines north-west of Red House Farm may by prehistoric [HER 16576];
  • A cropmark of a polygonal structure has been identified north-east of Galsey Wood and may be prehistoric [HER 16615];
  • Cropmarks of rectangular enclosures strung out along a linear feature like a trackway on a ridge top south of the village may be prehistoric [HER 16617];
  • A small trapezoidal cropmark south of Riseley Windmill may be prehistoric [HER 16618]
  • Cropmarks spotted north-east of Riseley Windmill may be prehistoric [HER 16619];
  • Three sides of a square identified at the north end of Keysoepark Wood may be prehistoric [HER 16620];
  • Cropmarks showing a rectangular enclosure near a separate group of enclosures west of Flints Wood may be prehistoric [HER 16621].