Meadow Croft Fold, Pilsworth. Results of the 1997 Field Walking Project at a Late Medieval Iron Smelting Site [Site name: MEADOW CROFT FOLD, PILSWORTH Study area: 0.25ha Investigation type: Post-determination/Research District: Bury Monument: IRON WORKING SITE. Medieval (1066-1540), [finds]. Medieval (1066-1540), [finds]. Post-medieval (1540-1901), FEATURE. Medieval (1066-1540) Ngr: SD83400830 Parish: Postcode: OL102RF]

13; figs; refs
A field walking project was undertaken within a field at Meadow Croft Fold, a deserted farmstead with medieval origins. Medieval features had been excavated within the field in 1983-4, and a substantial concentration of slag had been noted. The 1997 project was initiated in response to a perceived threat from annual ploughing, and as a result of a survey designed to enhance the SMR for Bury. Two distinct areas of tap slag were recorded during the survey, and ninety three sherds of medieval pottery, apparently of 14th-15th century date, were recovered. There was a concordance between the slag distribution and that of the medieval pottery. Concentrations of charcoal and ironstone which probably indicated the location of iron smelting processes were also observed, and post-medieval pottery was recovered. The distribution of slag indicated that the sheer weight and volume of the debris had preserved an impression of the site of the slag spoil heaps. It was concluded that the site of Meadow Croft Fold was of high archaeological potential, as it represented a deserted medieval settlement with proven remains surviving from this period, which had not been affected by modern urban or industrial development. The existence of a smelting site added to its significance. It was recommended that a rescue excavation should be carried out ahead of further plough damage to the site. [AIP]
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