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history : a walk through the archaeology of Castle Bytham : castle lime works quarry

added 27/07/04

Just behind the railway line is the Castle Lime Works Quarry - a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest. Preserved in the quarry face is a complete record of the Upper Lincolnshire Limestone formation. The rich ammonite fossils it contains provide the dating evidence for strata that formed in warm shallow seas during the Middle Jurasic period about 170 million years ago.

During the digging of the quarry in the 1850's there were two significant archaeological discoveries - a 'barbed and tanged' arrowhead from the Bronze Age (220-750BC) and a Saxon burial.

The Saxon burial was richly provided with grave goods now held in the collections of the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. The collection includes: a silver gilt annular (ring shaped) brooch set with four garnets and highly decorated; a bronze pennanular (broken ring) brooch; a bronze ring and pin; over 20 green and blue glass beads; and 2 pendants - one fashioned from a large beavers tooth and one made from jet with 2 perforations.

Unfortunately for archaeologists these discoveries were made during the mid-nineteenth century when archaeological practice was in its infancy and the context of these discoveries was destroyed forever with the quarrying of the site.

View of Castle Lime Works Quarry as it is today (March 2003)

CLICK HERE to continue your Walk

Heritage Lincolnshire is an independent charitable trust working to promote and enhance Lincolnshire's rich heritage for the benefit of local people and visitors.

The Trust is supported by County and District Councils, national heritage bodies and through commercial activities and sponsorship.

Acknowledgment ...

The text shown on this page has been reproduced from a booklet written by Dan Ratcliffe, from the Heritage Trust of Lincolnshire, to accompany a walk around the village of Castle Bytham which he led as part of the Midsummer Fair in June 2004.

We are grateful for their permission to reproduce the document on this website.