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Durham University

Department of Archaeology

Research Postgraduates

Publication details for Professor Peter Rowley-Conwy

Gron, Kurt J., Rowley-Conwy, Peter, Fernandez-Dominguez, Eva, Gröcke, Darren R., Montgomery, Janet, Nowell, Geoff M. & Patterson, William P. (2018). A Meeting In The Forest: Hunters And Farmers At The Coneybury ‘Anomaly’, Wiltshire. Proceedings of the Prehistoric Society 84: 111-144.

Author(s) from Durham


The Coneybury ‘Anomaly’ is an Early Neolithic pit located just south-east of Stonehenge, Wiltshire. Excavations recovered a faunal assemblage unique in its composition, consisting of both wild and domestic species, as well as large quantities of ceramics and stone tools, including a substantial proportion of blades/bladelets. We present a suite of new isotope analyses of the faunal material, together with ancient DNA sex determination, and reconsider the published faunal data to ask: What took place at Coneybury, and who was involved? We argue on the basis of multiple lines of evidence that Coneybury represents the material remains of a gathering organised by a regional community, with participants coming from different areas. One group of attendees provided deer instead of, or in addition to, cattle. We conclude that the most likely scenario is that this group comprised local hunter-gatherers who survived alongside local farmers.