Subsequently there was a move to pastoralism.
Fishing was an important pursuit. Coin and pottery finds reflect
local and more distant trade and the fact that some inhabitants
did not live entirely by farming. The author points to the
potential for comparative work on the surrounding towns. This
small book reflects the interdisciplinary approach which
characterises much research on Romney Marsh. The author
discusses, for example, the consistencies and tensions between
the historical and archaeological evidence for this area. Some
of these result from a lack of historical sources for the
thirteenth century as compared with later periods.
Relatively large areas were exposed by topsoil
stripping in advance of quarrying. This allowed very full
investigation of a significant area of marshland reclamation and
dispersed settlement. Study of the landscape over centuries also
makes the Lydd work an important contribution to studies of
human occupation elsewhere in England.
Since this is a popular production it contains
selected further reading rather than notes. This reading
includes past monographs of the Romney Marsh Research Trust
where the early Lydd work was published, and a forthcoming book
by L. Barber and G. Priestley-Bell in which recent work will be
reported in detail.
G. M. DRAPER
A Bronze Age Settlement at Kemsley near
Sittingbourne, Kent. By M. Diak, with contributions from B.
McNee, B. Scott and R. Bendrey. 70pp. Canterbury Archaeological
Trust Occasional Paper 3, 2006, Heritage Marketing and
Publications Ltd, 2006. Paperback, £13.95. ISBN
The report on excavations and watching briefs undertaken at
Kemsley to the north-west of Sittingbourne describes evidence
for an emergent agricultural landscape defined by ditches (and
presumably also banks, hedges and fences) representing a formal
field system of a type becoming increasingly recognised in the
2nd millennium BC. Habitation is indicated by two putative round
houses. An extensive assemblage of mostly Middle and some Later
Bronze Age ceramics associated with the features is described
which provides a useful comparative corpus within the region.
Regrettably there was no programme of environmental sampling to
contextualise the features within their contemporary landscape
and agricultural practices. The few identifiable bones of
domesticates and a possible threshing floor contribute little to
an understanding of the agricultural regime. Critically there is
no radiocarbon dating framework which limits understanding of
sequence and development of the formally laid out landscape and
reduces the value of the ceramic assemblage. Lithics and some
pottery indicate prior activity from the Mesolithic to the Early