The MiddleStourValley, between Bures and Wormingford has long been of interest to Colchester Archaeological Group (CAG), owing to the number and variety of cropmarks visible from the air. These came to light largely through the aerial photography of Ida McMaster, a long-standing member of CAG, who has recently died at the age of 96. She took to the skies with her camera regularly between the early 1970s and late 1990s, and being a resident of MountBures, was particularly keen to photograph this part of the valley.
The cropmarks provide evidence of activity in the area from the early Neolithic, in the form of a long mortuary enclosure and at least one, or probably two, cursuses. Later, Bronze Age people also used the area to bury their dead in round barrows, often clustered around or aligned on the earlier features. CAG has been investigating the cropmarks for a number of years and has now published a booklet, ‘The Stour Valley: A Prehistoric Landscape’. The booklet, which is 40 pages long, has a foreword by Ronald Blythe, is fully illustrated in colour and costs £5 plus p&p. It can be ordered e-mailing ten.kugacnull@seiriuqne