Author Archives: Backstreeter

Spring Road Cemetery with Abingdon ware and Peterborough ware


Agricultural land, beside Spring Road, was purchased by Abingdon Town Council and converted into a cemetery in 1940

Every now and again the grave diggers would find things of historic interest: old graves, broken pots, and jewelry (Neolithic, Iron Age, Roman, Saxon, and more recent.)

Around the year 2000 AD, a large trenched area was dug in the unused part of the cemetery to allow archaeologists to investigate some of the undisturbed land before it was used for cemetery burial. A book all about the dig, in 2000 AD, called ‘Saved from the Grave – Neolithic to Saxon – Spring Road Municipal Cemetery’ was written by T Allen and Z Kamash.

This picture shows some of the Neolithic pots in Abingdon Museum. One may have come from the cemetery. I cannot be sure because the label says, ‘found near Abingdon.’

The photograph of pots at the back are of ones found at Barrow Hills and were given the name of ‘Abingdon Ware’ because that type of pot was first found in Abingdon. It would be good to get some ‘Abingdon ware’ on show at the local museum where it will be appreciated most.

The pot at the front is half of an elliptical dish, called Peterborough Ware – because the first one, with this patterning, was found near Peterborough. To me, this looks identical to the dish shown in the ‘Saved from the Grave’ book – found in Spring Road Cemetery.

I expect the current grave diggers still find artifacts that need recording.

P.S I will be updating this entry in the light of further information from the musuem.

Car Parking enforcement company not giving an inch

There was a free for all before November 1st. Since then residents, and visitors, are getting caught out by the stricter Civil Parking enforcement. The new company running the scheme, on behalf of Oxfordshire County Council, is giving no leeway. I spotted these 3 penalty charge notices (PCNs), yesterday, walking up East St Helen Street.

1. Waiting a permit.

2. Wheels behind the line and the bumper in front.

3. Not showing the blue badge arrival clock in the disabled space? The ID alone may not work.

Fines have increased from £40, last time I got one, to £70 (or half that if you pay within the shorter time shown on the PCN.)

St Helen’s Church Christmas Fair

Today would have been the Christmas Extravaganza but that is not happening this year.

Instead there was the St Helen’s Christmas Fair in the church

The Hand Bell ringers provided music. They are not doing as many gigs round care homes and fetes as usual this year, but they did St Michael’s Christmas Fair last week and were at St Helen’s this week.

Outside we had snow for a few minutes. Relations up north had a proper snow fall.

The Mother Christmases ran the raffle.

There was a place for refreshments and stalls in the riverside aisle, and books and jigsaws in the centre neare the alter. The Christmas Tree is already up and lit.