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Early Devensian sediments and palaeovenvironmental evidence from the excavations at the Royal Oak Portal Paddington, West London, UK

Early Devensian sediments and palaeovenvironmental evidence from the excavations at the Royal Oak Portal Paddington, West London, UK

Bates, Martin R., Champness, Carl, Haggart, Andrew, Macphail, Richard I., Parfitt, Simon A. and Schwenninger, Jean-Luc (2014) Early Devensian sediments and palaeovenvironmental evidence from the excavations at the Royal Oak Portal Paddington, West London, UK. Proceedings of the Geologists' Association, 125 (1). pp. 41-55. ISSN 0016-7878 (doi:10.1016/j.pgeola.2013.06.001)

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Abstract

This paper discusses the results of the investigation of Pleistocene sediments at the Royal Oak Portal (ROP) site on the new Crossrail scheme near Paddington Station, London. The site was sampled and recorded in May 2011 by archaeologists from Oxford Archaeology commissioned by Crossrail Ltd. The investigation revealed a sedimentary sequence associated with cool climate waterlain deposition towards the edge of the River Westbourne floodplain. During excavation an assemblage of around 100 identifiable large mammal bones was recovered, dating to the Late Pleistocene. The major concentration of bones, from bison and reindeer, was located and excavated from a shallow sequence of sediments. Analysis of the bones indicates that they represent a natural death assemblage, scavenged and subsequently disarticulated, transported by water, exposed and further dispersed and broken by trampling. The site is of regional and national importance because the assemblage derives from a well- constrained geological context, with associated dating evidence suggesting accumulation during the later parts of Marine Isotope Stage (MIS) 5 and continuing within MIS 4. The site is also of significance because it is one of a growing number of recently discovered sites away from the main fluvial archive for the British Middle and Upper Pleistocene. These sites have the potential to add significantly to our understanding of parts of the Pleistocene record that remain difficult to document through the investigation of the more active systems associated with major rivers such as the Thames, Severn or Trent.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: [1] Acknowledgements (funding): The project was commissioned by Crossrail and overseen by Jay Carver; Crossrail’s Project Archaeologist.
Uncontrolled Keywords: pleistocene sediments, bison, reindeer, Early Devensian, OSL dating
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GB Physical geography
Faculty / Department / Research Group: Faculty of Engineering & Science
Faculty of Engineering & Science > Department of Pharmaceutical, Chemical & Environmental Sciences
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 21 Oct 2016 11:43
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/12504

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