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Essex Field Club
Essex Field Club
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Essex Field Club

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EFC Centre at Wat Tyler Country ParkWe are closed due to the Covid-19 situation, but we are otherwise normally open to the public at our centre at Wat Tyler Country Park every Saturday, Sunday and bank holiday 11am-4pm, check. We are also normally open on Wednesdays 10am-4pm.

Geology Site Account

A-Z Geological Site Index

Parsloes Park, BARKING, London Borough of Barking, TQ478848, Historical site only

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Site category: Palaeolithic site

Site of geological interest with a disused pit that has provided information about the underlying geology and Palaeolithic archaeology. Any further significant excavations in the area should be recorded.


Site description

In the early 1920s a small gravel pit existed on farmland north of the railway and east of Gale Street, just a short distance from Gale Street Farm which was on the south side of the line. The farm was demolished in 1926 for the building of Gale Street Halt (now Becontree Station) and the gravel pit was expanded to provide aggregate for the vast Becontree housing estate. During the pit’s working life it produced numerous Palaeolithic flint tools including 26 hand-axes, many of which are now in the British Museum.

This area is situated on the Taplow/Mucking terrace of the Thames and the gravel was laid down about 200,000 years ago (Marine Isotope Stages 8-6). Such a large number of hand¬axes in one spot indicates that this may have been the site of a camp used by Neanderthal hunters for butchering animals on the banks of the Thames.

The pit is now a large lake within Parsloes Park, a public park owned by the borough council.


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Reference: Wymer 1985 (p.296)

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