Department of Archaeology

Flixborough Anglo-Saxon Settlement project (UK)

8th-century silver-gilt copper alloy mount, with interlace decoration and eye settings of red glass (Unstratified).

Post-excavation analysis, publication and digital archives

Project Director: Chris Loveluck, 1995-2000
Publication Series Editor: Chris Loveluck
Project Base: Humber Archaeology Partnership/Humber Field Archaeology
Funded principally by English Heritage

Between 1989 and 1991, excavations adjacent to the former settlement of North Conesby, in the parish of Flixborough, North Lincolnshire, unearthed remains of an Anglo-Saxon settlement associated with one of the largest collections of artefacts and animal bones yet found on such a site. Analysis has demonstrated that the excavated part of the settlement was occupied, or used for settlement-related activity, throughout what have been termed the ‘Mid’ and ‘Late’ Anglo-Saxon periods. In an unprecedented occupation sequence from an Anglo-Saxon rural settlement, six main periods of superimposed occupation have been identified, dating from the seventh to the early eleventh century; with a further period of activity, between the twelfth and fifteenth centuries AD.

The settlement was situated 8km south of the Humber estuary, overlooking the floodplain of the River Trent, and was sited on a series of windblown, sand spurs at the western extremity of the Lincoln Edge escarpment. The remains of approximately forty buildings and other structures were uncovered; and due to the survival of large refuse deposits huge quantities of artefacts and faunal remains were encountered, compared with most other rural settlements of the period. Together, the different forms of evidence and their depositional circumstances provide an unprecedented picture of nearly all aspects of daily life on a settlement, which probably housed elements of the contemporary social elite amongst its inhabitants, between the seventh and eleventh centuries. Furthermore, and perhaps even more importantly, the detailed analysis of the remains has also provided indications of how the character of occupation changed radically throughout the later first millennium AD, at the time when the kingdom of England emerged.

The analysis and interpretation of the remains was undertaken between 1997 and 2007, published in four volumes between 2007 and 2009, and a major digital publication of the archives from the research is currently being compiled for the Archaeological Data Service (ADS), funded by English Heritage. This digital publication will be the final element of the current work on the settlement, enabling researchers to continue gaining benefit from the discoveries and to reassess the remains in the future


Recent Publications

Loveluck, C.P. and Evans, D., 2010: ‘Anglo-Saxon Flixborough, daily life and dynamic change. AD 650-1000’, British Archaeology, December 2010.

Loveluck, C.P. and Evans, D.H., eds., 2009: Life and Economy at early medieval Flixborough, c. AD 600-1000: The Artefact evidence. Excavations at Flixborough Volume 2, Series ed. C.P. Loveluck, Oxford: Oxbow.

Loveluck, C.P., 2007: Rural Settlement, Lifestyles and Social change in the later first millennium AD. Anglo-Saxon Flixborough in its wider context. Excavations at Flixborough, Volume 4, Series ed. C.P. Loveluck, Oxford: Oxbow.

Loveluck, C.P. and Atkinson, D., 2007: The Early Medieval Settlement Remains from Flixborough, Lincolnshire: The Occupation Sequence, c. AD 600-1000. Excavations at Flixborough, Volume 1, Series ed. C.P. Loveluck, Oxford: Oxbow.

Dobney, K., Jaques, D., Barrett, J. and Johnstone, C., 2007: Farmers, Monks and Aristocrats. The Environmental Archaeology of an Anglo-Saxon Estate Centre at Flixborough, North Lincolnshire, England. Excavations at Flixborough, Volume 3, Series Editor: C.P. Loveluck, Oxford: Oxbow.



Department of Archaeology

University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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