Monument record 0689600000 - N of Eton Rowing Lake (Areas 3 and 5): Foot Bridge


Two lines of vertical timbers dated to 1520 BC, thought to be the earliest known bridge on the Thames, excavated in advance of Eton Rowing Course

Protected Status/Designation

  • Planning Notification Area: Multiperiod complex of settlements, field systems and cemeteries, partly excavated for a rowing lake


Type and Period (1)

  • BRIDGE (Bronze Age - 2350 BC to 701 BC)


In 1995, an area of approximately 0.75 hectares was stripped by Oxford Archaeology to determine the extent of the former Thames Channel. Within the lower deposits two lines of vertical timbers were recorded, orientated at right angles to the channel and running most of its width. Two types of timber were observed - two rows of relatively large timbers (up to 0.5m in diameter) approximately in line with each other and two rows of relatively slight, paired timbers (generally 0.12 -0.15m diameter), offset by about 3m from those ar either end The timbers were spaced 3m part along each row and the rows were 2m apart. All of the timbers were roundwood, mostly fast-grown oak, whose bases had been trimmed to a point. Between the lines of post an horizontal wattle panel was found. A human femur and skull fragment were also recovered from the lower silts immediately downstream of the structure. Several sherds of prehsitoric pottery were also reocovered. Radio-carbon dating gave 1520 - 1220 BC. The structure is thus the earliest bridge found on theThames (3).

Sources (11)

  • ---SBC19097 Unpublished document: Oxford Archaeological Unit. 1995. The Eton College Rowing Lake, Dorney, South Bucks..
  • ---SBC19717 Article in serial: CBA South Midlands Group. 1995. South Midlands Archaeology 25, 1995. No 25.
  • ---SBC19846 Article in serial: CBA South Midlands Group. 1998. South Midlands Archaeology 28, 1998. 28.
  • ---SBC19988 Unpublished document: Oxford Archaeology. 1996. Eton College Rowing Lake, Dorney, South Buckinghamshire - Archaeological Evaluations 1995.
  • ---SBC19989 Unpublished document: Oxford Archaeology. The Eton College Rowing Lake, Dorney, South Buckinghamshire - Archaeological Evaluations 1995.
  • ---SBC20193 Article in serial: 2000. Burial in water 'normal rite' for 1000 years. 53, June 2000.
  • ---SBC20194 Article in serial: Tim Allen and Ken Walsh. Eton Rowing lake. 148. pp124-7.
  • ---SBC2399 Unpublished document: Buckinghamshire County Museum Archaeological Service. 1986. The Dorney Study: An Archaeological Implications Report.
  • <1>SBC19770 Article in serial: CBA South Midlands Group. 1997. South Midlands Archaeology 27, 1997.
  • <2>SBC19799 Monograph: Stuart Foreman, Jonathan Hiller and David Petts et al. 2002. Gathering the people, settling the land: the archaeology of a middle Thames landscape.
  • <3>SBC19979 Unpublished document: Mike Farley and Angus Wainwright. 1990. Correspondence relating to the parchmarks noted on the South Lawn, Stowe, in 1990.


Grid reference SU 93240 78026 (point)
Civil Parish DORNEY, South Bucks, Buckinghamshire

Finds (0)

Related Monuments/Buildings (8)

Related Events/Activities (2)

  • Event - Survey: (EBC11855)
  • Event - Intervention: Eton College Rowing Course Project (EBC16357)

Record last edited

Dec 15 2023 10:32AM

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