Ockbrook is a small village just to the east of Derby which is fast becoming a dormitory town. For some years now the Ockbrook and Borrowash Historical
Societyled byAlan Palfreymanhasbeen doing fieldwalking in the area. On Littlehay Grange Farm, 3 miles to the East of the village (SK437375) they found a scatter of Roman Pottery. Here they excavated and at once discovered a
This was clearly too big
Roman building. to be uncoveredpurely by a local History Society, so they joined forces with the Derbyshire Archaeological Society and the Ilkeston and District Local History Society and now 3 seasonslater they have uncovered a Romano-British aisled barn in a project that proved to bea perfect size for a small local archaeologicalsociety.
Ockbrook is not in an area that is supposed to contain Roman remains.
The geology is what is technically known as Mercian mudstone i.e. a heavy red mad which though good farming land by today's standards, was long thought to be too heavy for earlier farmers. In the 12th century the area was recorded as a Royal forest and it was thought that there was no settlement prior to the 12th century. However the field-
walking established first a scatter of Mesolithic and Neolithic flints and then several concentrations of Roman pottery
Below. The Roman building at Littlehay. This was an aisled barn stretching down to the middle left of the picture. The far quadrant is not fully excavated. In the foreground is a section through the outer ditch.
CURRENT ARCHAEOLOGY 156