01394 460469 rendlesham@naunton.net
Bede, an English monk writing in the 8th century, mentioned an East Anglian royal settlement at Rendlesham, four miles from Sutton Hoo. Is this the home of the people buried in the mounds here?

 

rendlesham rediscovered

 

In 2008 Archaeologists from Suffolk County Council Archaeological Service began the exciting search to rediscover this settlement. To date over 700 pieces of Anglo-Saxon metal have been found.

 

Unfinished copper-alloy Anglo-Saxon buckle and pin with finished examplesbeside and below, with a piece of bronzeworking debris (unfinished pin 24mm long)

finds1

 

The location of Rendlesham and Sutton Hoo in the valley of the River Deben.

map2

 How have we been searching for the Royal Settlement?

A metal detecting survey, conducted by four experienced and skilled individuals,has yielded the most information and all of the finds.

rendlesham rediscovered

What have we found?

Metalworking and coins…

Work so far has uncovered a large and important settlement at Rendlesham which was at its peak in the 7th century. A wide range of activities went on there.

rendlesham rediscovered

The finds show that skilled craftsmen were working at Rendlesham. Objects at every stage of their manufacture have been discovered. Unfinished objects such as pins, buckles and bag catches have been found.

Overseas Links
The people who lived at Rendlesham had widespread foreign contacts. Overseas traders came to sell their goods, and delegations to the King from other rulers brought diplomatic gifts. These two fragments are from bronze bowls which were imported from the eastern Mediterranean. Coins from the continent show regular contacts with France and the Netherlands.

Who lived there?
Both the social elite and their dependants can be identified through the finds discovered. Finds of high quality jewellery indicate that Rendlesham was probably a royal residence.

jewellery

What have we learned about Sutton Hoo and Rendlesham?

All the work so far indicates that we have found the royal settlement mentioned by Bede and that Rendlesham was an important place at the time of Sutton Hoo, where Kings stayed and royal business was conducted. It is likely that some of the objects found at Sutton Hoo were made at Rendlesham and that there were strong links between the two sites.

The Kings of East Anglia had other residences and probably stayed at each one in turn. South-east Suffolk may
have been the core of the East Anglian Kingdom in the 7th century. Going Forwards Rediscovering the site of the royal settlement at Rendlesham is another exciting chapter in the story. Archaeology will continue to shed light on the lives
of the Sutton Hoo Kings and their dependants