11. Conclusions

The large size of the sample used, and the obvious contrasts in raw material usage by prehistoric communities in Cumbria permits, at least as a working hypothesis, that there were two, largely exclusive, exchange networks operating in Cumbria between the Late Mesolithic and the Early Bronze Age. During the period in which large numbers of axes of Lake District origin were being accumulated in eastern Yorkshire, substantial quantities of flint of presumed Yorkshire origin found its way into Cumbria.

Three areas for further work are identified:

  1. St Bees VIII offers an unusual industry based upon chalk flint that may be of Antrim, not Yorkshire, origin, sited immediately adjacent to waterlogged deposits that might preserve a wide range of additional evidence.
  2. The area around Ambleside Roman fort offers the first prospect of finding significant prehistoric lakeside activity in central Cumbria, potentially contemporaneous with the Langdale axe factory sites.
  3. Aughertree Fell shows potential for Neolithic upland activity which can be compared with that from eastern Cumbria, and which can place the identification of a possible causewayed enclosure into better context.


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Last updated: Wed May 27 2009