The field sits within in the narrow band of the Lower Greensand group which, according to Geology of Britain (www.bgs.ac.uk/discoveringGeology/geologyOfBritain), consists of mainly sands and sandstones with some silts and clays. To the north is the Wealden clay geological group and to the south is the chalk and flint South Downs. The view from the field with its outlook across the river Rother and Arun valley to the Downs is truly inspirational. It’s clear why this piece of land and its surroundings may have been used by the earlier roaming hunter gatherers of the Upper Palaeolithic and Mesolithic periods through to the agricultural practices of the Neolithic period. The field would have provided a superb vantage point for watching for herds of animals passing below or gathering on the banks of the rivers. It was easy to imagine the Stone Age hunters knapping and preparing the flint they may have collected or mined and brought back from the chalk Downs and planning the days hunt.
We were organised into groups by Steve Cleverly from CDAS and sent out to walk in straight rows next to each other, examining the ground for artefacts, across a grid mapped out to cover all of the designated area.
The field walkers from both WAS and CDAS had become experts at spotting the flint tools because of the study days sorting and cataloguing the worked flint, found by Mr Smith on his land, under the watchful eyes of our flint specialists Bob and Gill Turner. We spotted some finely knapped Mesolithic curved blades, bladelets and microliths that were made from the best black flint and some cores with several flakes taken off. We found a good
scattering of flint tools from the Mesolithic and Neolithic across the field throughout the week as well as pottery sherds from later periods and even a
Victorian penny. Everything we had collected we put into our bags with a grid number to be properly identified and recorded by the finds team in the
Gazebo. It is now the job of Steve Cleverly and Bob Turner to sort out the results of the fieldwalk and work out a distribution map of all the different
artefacts that were found. Overall a really enjoyable experience.