Black Cat Quarry

Local school visiting the excavations at Black Cat Quarry and having the chance to excavate test pits and handle finds © Copyright ARS Ltd 2022
View looking east across part of the Roman field system and the Viking enclosure © Copyright ARS Ltd 2022
One Roman grave, two skulls, three legs © Copyright ARS Ltd 2022

In 2013-2019 Archaeological Research Services Ltd carried out archaeological excavations in advance of gravel extraction at a quarry operated by Breedon Group to the east of the Black Cat Roundabout in Bedfordshire. The Black Cat Roundabout is on the junction between the A1 and A421 Bedford road, situated roughly 6km south of St Neots and 12km east of Bedford.

Covering almost 50 hectares, the excavations revealed evidence of human activity dating between the Upper Palaeolithic period and the boom in the market garden economy of the region from the 18th century onwards. Farmsteads dated to the Early Bronze Age and Roman periods were revealed, along with an Iron Age shrine, a Roman cemetery and a riverside enclosure that could represent a Viking fortress.

A report on the results of the excavations has been published in Current Archaeology issue 388 for July 2022.

The site was also nominated for a Current Archaeology Award 2023!

To find out about the features and finds discovered at the site please use the links to the right. You can also view a photo gallery and use the ‘Links and Downloads’ page to access the project reports.

Archaeological Research Services Ltd