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Short Ferry causeway

Reference Name MLI83324

Short Ferry causeway

Short Ferry causeway


There is conjectural evidence that a causeway dating possibly as far back as the Bronze Age runs along part of what is now Short Ferry Road, which linked the extreme eastern part of Fiskerton with the higher ground to the east. It is thought that this causeway formed part of a ritual and symbolic landscape in the Witham Valley dating possibly as far back as the Bronze Age, and extending into the sixteenth century. The rituals probably focused on water features, including the River Witham itself.
In the vicinity there is a large group of early-mid Bronze Age barrows (Barlings and Stainfield barrow cemetery 50187), which is thought to be associated with the causeway. It seems that the rituals changed from inhumation to deposition from the late Bronze Age, and some high status finds have come this area, which are thought to be votive. These finds date from the later prehistoric to the medieval periods.
During the early medieval period it is suggested that Bardney Abbey was the Christian 'guardian' of the causeway and the wider ritual and symbolic landscape.
It seems that in the later medieval period Stainfield Nunnery were the guardians of the causeway, through the fishery grange at the junction of the Witham and Barlings Eau (Barleymouth Grange 52906), although Bardney Abbey may have retained much of the control, including ceremonial fishing rights, perpetuating the pre-Christian ritual connection with the river. It is suggested that there were other early churches in the area subordinate to Bardney Abbey. {1}

1 Article in monograph: Stocker, D. and Everson, P.. 2003. ‘The straight and narrow way: fenland causeways and the conversion of the landscape in the Witham valley, Lincolnshire’, in The Cross Goes North, Processes of Conversion in Northern Europe, AD300-1300, edited by Martin Carver. pp.271-88

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Last updated: 24-July-2015 12:37:03

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