Welcome to Lismore Fields.
It is now only 6,000 years ago and the landscape has changed. Many trees have been cleared out of the way and a rectangular building is under construction . A series of wooden posts have been driven into the ground to support a thatched roof of heather. The walls are covered in mud plaster. Small fields are being prepared nearby.
A new way of life is being practiced here. People have begun to make pottery, farm the land and tend domesticated animals like cattle and pigs. Some communities still follow the old ways, following the ancient paths through the landscape, but eventually the new ways of the farmers will become dominant.
In the 1980s archaeologists discovered the remains of three buildings here at Lismore Fields. They dated from between 6,000 to 5,000 years ago during the Neolithic, or ‘New Stone Age’. The buildings are among some of the earliest structures of their type in the country.
Finds from the excavation included some of the oldest pottery to be found in Derbyshire. Analysis of the pottery sherds detected the presence of milk, animal fats and vegetable matter – all clues to the diet of Derbyshire’s first farmers. Other finds included the remains of hearths and stone tools.
The evidence isn’t clear whether all three buildings stood together at the same time. One seems to have been taken down with post-holes carefully filled in. The other two structures seem seem to have burnt down. Charred plant remains from these buildings include emmer grain, chaff and flax seeds, hazelnuts, crab apples and other seeds – providing more clues about both the wild and domestic plants used by the community Lismore Fields.