So we come to the Iron Age, which in our corner of Europe began around 700BC. The people who lived in the islands were probably the same ones who had been here since the stone age. New ideas came here from Europe including the use of Iron to make weapons, tools and useful things. “Celtic” style art was also used as decoration, and Celtic-style pottery was used for cooking, drinking and storing food. We became part of the people known as Gauls.
In Alderney there was a village on Longis Common, possibly using the bay as a harbour. The name ‘Riduna’ may be Celtic meaning ‘the place under the hill’. Just by the modern golf course there was once an Iron Age potter’s workshop.
Meanwhile on Guernsey, warrior chiefs were buried along with their swords, spears and shields. An Iron Age burial ground has been found at Kings Road, above St Peter Port. The bones of these men had long vanished but their rusted iron weapons remained. We have now also found the graves of women. Some wore neck-rings and bracelets made of bronze. One was buried wearing a bracelet carved from a black stone called jet. Away from the graves we have found ring of holes in the ground showing where the houses of these people once were. These were round, built from wooden posts with walls made from sticks and mud (known as ‘’wattle and daub”). The roofs were cone-shaped and made of thatch (straw) on a wooden frame.
By 120BC, over in Europe something was happening that would bring a sharp end to the Iron Age. The Romans were coming.