The area of Poole Harbour has been inhabited for at least 2,500 years. During the Iron Age Poole Harbour was an important port.  In Green Island/Cleavel point area there are the remains of two jetties which must have been used adjacent to a large trading and manufacturing site.


Trade between Gaul (France) and Britain would have been exported and imported through this staging area.  Coins made by the Ambiani, who lived in Northern Gaul, are evidence of early cross channel trading and the first coins made in Britain are copies of these coins. The early coins were of a large denomination so may more likely to have been used for political or social use such as dowries rather than to pay for goods.

Many amphorae from the wine producing areas of Italy have been found around Green Island in Poole Harbour.  As well as containing wine, fish sauce and olive oil would also have been transported in amphorae.  Pottery, iron goods and shale jewelry would have been exported to Gaul from Britain, and more intensive trading over greater distances with a greater choice of goods would have evolved once Gaul was taken over by the Romans.

An Iron Age log boat dating back to 295BC was uncovered during dredging work in Poole Harbour which is now preserved at Poole Museum.  It was made from a single oak log and is 10m long.  It is likely that the log boat would not have gone beyond the harbour for fear of capsizing in deeper waters.


More information about Poole Harbour can be found at the Poole Harbour Heritage Project