Exciting Archaeology on Construction Site.

Work continues to speed along on the ‘Pathways into the Past’, most of the demolition work has been completed and the contractors are now starting the construction! This construction includes the digging of several trenches and holes for the foundations of the new galleries; it was during the digging of one of these trenches that they uncovered an exciting piece of archaeology!

Whilst excavating the strip foundation for the eastern wall of the new link gallery between the Police Station and the Courthouse, they uncovered the cellar of a medieval house. Archaeologist, George Anelay was in attendance as part of our planning permissions and began his archaeological assessment.

This assessment uncovered both end walls of the cellar which were made from stone. George believes other rooms either side may go beyond the cellar towards the Police Station, under the courthouse and back towards the wall along the ally/Twitten.

It is believed that these cellars belong to a set of buildings shown on a map of 1775 which shows a row of houses running along the line of the Twitten between St Peter’s Road and Hylton Road. These houses were pulled down at some point before 1806, probably due to the expansion of the manor house, Petersfield House’ belonging to the Jolliffe Family.  

The Jolliffe family played a major role in the history of Petersfield and the discovery of these two cellar walls is helping us to piece together even more about the impact they had on the town as well as the general changing shape of Petersfield town.

A recent article in the Petersfield Post included an image of a range of artefacts noted has having been found during the construction work at the museum. This is not correct, the objects that can be seen are replicas from our handling collection and not genuine artefacts from the museum construction site.

You can keep up to date with all the progress of the ‘Pathways into the Past’ project on our website: www.petersfieldmuseum.co.uk.

Two sides of the stone wall uncovered (facing the Courthouse).