New Archaeological Landscapes of the Vale of the White Horse


Extensive archaeological excavations, notably around Wantage and Grove, have accompanied recent large-scale developments in the Vale of White Horse, revealing a hitherto unknown wealth of prehistoric, Roman, and early medieval remains. Meanwhile, work in the middle of Wantage itself has produced more evidence for the Roman settlement that lies beneath the modern town, and important traces of its early Saxon successor, which was to become the birthplace of King Alfred. All this new information is transforming our knowledge of early landscape and settlement in the Vale of White Horse.

This day school will provide an overview of these latest results. Through a combination of talks on some of the most important recent excavations, and ones which present a wider synthesis of particular topics, we will explore how new information coming from development-led archaeology is greatly expanding our understanding of Oxfordshire’s past.

Programme details

9.15am: Registration.

9.30am: Setting the scence, Roger Thomas

9.45am: Changing landscapes – archaeology, development and discovery around Wantage and Grove, Richard Oram

10.30am: Coffee/tea break

11.00am: A line through time: discoveries on the Childrey Warren pipeline and their landscape context, Alistair Barclay

11.45am: Between the Downs and the Vale: prehistoric settlement around Wantage, Alex Davies and Chris Hayden

12.45pm: Lunch

2.00pm: Late Iron Age and Romano-British farming landscapes in the Vale of White Horse, Edward Biddulph

3.00pm: Coffee/tea break

3.30pm: Early Anglo-Saxon Wantage and its hinterland: the evidence reviewed, Toby Martin

4.30pm: Discussion and concluding remarks, Roger Thomas

4.45pm: Course disperses


Description Costs
Tuition - in-person attendance £80.00
Tuition - virtual attendance £80.00
Baguette £5.50
Full Hot Lunch (3 courses) £15.50


If you are in receipt of a UK state benefit you may be eligible for a reduction of 50% of tuition fees.

If you do not qualify for the concessionary fee but are experiencing financial hardship, you may still be eligible for financial assistance.

Concessionary fees for short courses


Dr Alistair Barclay


Principal Post-Excavation Manager, Cotswold Archaeology

Mr Edward Biddulph


Senior Manager and Roman pottery specialist, Oxford Archaeology

Miss Anni Byard


Anni has been working in archaeology for 20 years, firstly as a commercial field archaeologist then for 11 years as the Finds Liaison Officer for Oxfordshire and West Berkshire with the Portable Antiquities Scheme. Anni left the PAS in 2019 to pursue a PhD with the University of Leicester and Ashmolean Museum, researching the Iron Age to Roman transition in Britain from the perspective of coin hoards. Her research focuses on the appearance of hoards and coins both in the landscape and in archaeological contexts. Anni works part time for Oxford Archaeology South as their small finds specialist and has a BA in Archaeology from the University of Liverpool and an MSc in Applied Landscape Archaeology from the University of Oxford.

Alex Davies


Project Manager, Oxford Archaeology South

Dr Christopher Hayden


Senior Project Manager, Oxford Archaeology South

Dr Toby Martin

Director of Studies and Speaker

Toby obtained his BA in Archaeology and Anthropology as well as his MSt in European Archaeology from the University of Oxford, and studied for his PhD at the University of Sheffield. Since 2013 Toby has worked as a Research Fellow and a Lecturer at the University of Oxford’s School of Archaeology. His research focuses on the early medieval period, with a particular interest in the social role of objects in Europe in the centuries that followed the collapse of Roman imperial rule.

Mr Richard Oram


Planning Archaeologist, Oxfordshire County Council

Mr Roger M Thomas

Course Director and Speaker

School of Archaeology, University of Oxford


Accommodation is not included in the price, but if you wish to stay with us the night before the course, then please contact our Residential Centre.

Accommodation in Rewley House - all bedrooms are modern, comfortably furnished and each room has tea and coffee making facilities, Freeview television, and Free WiFi and private bath or shower rooms.  Please contact our Residential Centre on +44 (0) 1865 270362 or email for details of availability and discounted prices.

IT requirements

You can opt to attend this hybrid teaching event either online (via a livestream) or in person at Rewley House, Oxford. You will be given the option of how you wish to attend during the enrolment process. You can only pick one option. If your preferred attendance format is fully booked, you can email us to be put on the waiting list.

For those joining us online

The University of Oxford uses Microsoft Teams for our learning environment. If you’re attending online, you’ll be able to see and hear the speakers, and to submit questions via the Teams interface. Joining instructions will be sent out prior to the start date. We recommend that you join the session at least 10-15 minutes prior to the start time – just as you might arrive a bit early at our lecture theatre for an in-person event.

If you have not used the Microsoft Teams app before, once you click the joining link you will be invited to download it (this is free). Once you have downloaded the app, please test before the start of your course. If you are using a laptop or desktop computer, you will also be offered the option of connecting using a web browser. If you connect via a web browser, Chrome is recommended.

Please note that this course will not be recorded.