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Rescue excavation work at Jubilee Hall
(click on the images to enlarge)

Excavation in the City of London in the 1970s and 1980s had failed to find virtually any evidence of occupation in the period from 410 AD to the 10th century despite apparently unambiguous historical evidence of London’s existence at least from 604 AD onwards. However, the Department of Greater London Archaeology (DGLA) had discovered so-called Saxon farms in the area of Fleet Street, Covent Garden, and Westminster.

In the mid 1980s Alan Vince and Martin Biddle independently came up with the theory that London had been re-established not in the City but a couple of miles to the west, centred on the area called Aldwych. This Middle Saxon settlement was known as Lundenwic. Lundenwic was subjected to increasing Viking attack in the 9th century and the population may have been forced to scatter.

In about 886 AD Alfred the Great moved the Londoners back into the City of London and the shelter of the Roman defensive walls, which still stood. The Late Saxon reoccupation of the Roman town site was known as Lundenburgh.

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London: finds of the 8th to 9th centuries
Apart from a few near St Pauls Church, the majority of the finds are in the Lundenwic area

London: finds of the 9th to 10th centuries
the majority of the finds are in the area of the old Roman town