skip to primary navigationskip to content


Old Clee 2017 Test Pit Location Map

Old Clee 2017 Test Pit Pottery Report


In May 2017 a total of 8 1m square archaeological test pits were excavated in Old Clee by 29 Year 10 students from the Oasis Academy Wintringham, Caistor Yarborough Academy and Ormiston Maritime Academy and were dug as part of the Independent Learning Archaeology Field School (ILAFS) programme, formally known as the Higher Education Field Academy (HEFA) programme undertaken by Access Cambridge Archaeology (ACA) in East Anglia and beyond, which aims to raise the aspirations, enthusiasm and attainment of 14-17 year-olds with regard to higher education by making a valuable contribution to current academic research at the University of Cambridge, into the development of rural communities and settlements in the past.

This was the first year of excavations in Old Clee and the 8 test pits were clustered around the church. All the pottery found dates to the 11th century and later and was identified from four of the test pits (OCL/17/2, OCL/17/6, OCL/17/7 and OCL/17/8), three of these were from pits opposite the church to the east. As there were no finds dating to the later medieval it is possible that Old Clee was quite severely affected by the numerous socio-economic factors of the 14th century that also included the Black Death and led to a shift in the settlement, although further test pits would be needed to confirm this. The village picked up again during the post medieval although it remained small until the later 19th century when both the settlements of Cleethorpes and Grimsby expanded to include the once separate village of Old Clee.