Empire Site, High Street, Dunbar
- HER number: MEL8768
- Site Name: Empire Site, High Street, Dunbar
- Grid Reference: 367888 678821
- Civil Parish:
- Monument Type:
- Cist (Iron Age, Late Prehistoric, Late Iron Age, Prehistoric)
- Summary: Late Iron Age cist grave, medieval and post-medieval settlement features
- Description: (1) (2) (3) This site to the rear of 44 High Street, Dunbar, the Empire Site, was subject to evaluation in 2002, followed by area excavation in 2005, carried out by AOC Archaeology Group. The work was done in advance of development.
The first stage of evaluation (1) identified a number of features of medieval date, including two upstanding walls, a wall foundation trench, a post hole, and a large circular pit. One wall and foundation trench, on an east-west alignment, was interpreted as a medieval burgage plot boundary, and was associated with pottery of 12th to 14th century date. The other features contained pottery of 12th to 15th century date.
(2) The evaluation was followed by area excavation in 2005. In the south-east of the excavation site, a cist grave of probable Late Iron Age date was revealed. The cist was subrectangular, measuring 3.1m east/west by 1.9m north/south, and constructed out of sandstone blocks. The cist contained evidence of two burials. The first skeleton, largely disarticulated, appeared to have been moved to make way for the second burial. This inhumation was in a crouched position and was associated with several finds: an iron spearhead, a sword, and a possible pin.
A number of late medieval features were found. A large pit may have been used for gravel extraction or as a rubbish pit. A circular stone-built well contained animal bone, and pottery including White Gritty Ware and green-glazed late medieval pottery. A ditch may have marked the end of a medieval burgage plot. Several pits also dated to this period. Post-medieval features included a crude paved surface and drainage features.
- For more information contact: East Lothian Council HER
- Related Interventions:
- Related Places:
- Associated Periods:
- (1) Unpublished document: Wilson, D. and Ellis, C.. 2002. Evaluation at Dunbar, Abbeylands and Empire: Data Structure Report.
- (2) Unpublished document: Roy, M.. 2005. Empire Site, Dunbar; Excavation: Data Structure Report.
- (3) Digital archive: Roy, M.. 2005. Empire Site, Dunbar; Excavation: Data Structure Report.