Amateur excavators dig in for history

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VOLUNTEERS helped to dig up our ancient history last weekend as part of an archaeological fact-finding mission.

Eighty amateur excavators pitched in at a site about a kilometre to the south west of Grimes Graves to help uncover the area’s past.

Archaeologists Barry Bishop and Mark Knight led the volunteers in working on 30 test pits at the ancient flint mining area.

Mr Bishop said the day was a step to getting local people involved in Grimes Graves’ preservation.

“It was a great success,” he said.

“Grimes Graves is an internationally renowned site and this dig was all about giving it some context. Even though it’s so well known, there are still areas around the site that we know very little about.”

Grimes Graves was used as a flint mine between 2800BC and 2200BC and was discovered in 1870 by Canon William Greenwell.

“It’s comparable to stone age sites like Stonehenge in terms of the work that went on there,” added Mr Bishop.

Last weekend was the last chance for the dig to take place as the protection of nested birds prevents work between the end of March and October.