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Archaeologists find Civil War artefacts at Auckland Castle

An archaeologist explores a trench at Auckland Castle, Bishop Auckland. The team have found fragments of a stained glass window, pottery, and charred bricks which could have come from an explosion during the Civil Qar era.

An archaeologist explores a trench at Auckland Castle, Bishop Auckland

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Archaeologists uncover building remains at Auckland Castle site

A team from Durham University is digging in the grounds of Auckland Castle in Bishop Auckland before work to turn the historic site into a tourist destination begins. It has revealed new information about the site's 900 year history.

Archaeologists have unearthed the remains of a building near the castle's Scotland Wing, alongside evidence of burning.

The castle's head curator, Dr Chris Ferguson, believes the volume of debris could suggest a 'very dramatic end' to what looks to have been a substantial structure.

"Sir Arthur Hazlerigg, was one of the five MPs who led the rebellion against Charles I in 1642, he was appointed Oliver Cromwell's general in the North East,"

"In 1650 he bought Auckland Castle after the then Bishop of Durham had fled at the height of the civil war.

"We know he set about what was later described as the 'ravenous sacrilege' of the building and that he proceeded to blow up the 350-year-old chapel with gunpowder with the intention of reusing the stone in a new mansion.

"If gunpowder was indeed used then that could account for the astounding amount of wreckage that has been found."

– The castle's head curator, Dr Chris Ferguson

"Whatever happened here is from a time when records were either vague or non-existent, so anything we find will help add to the overall picture of the castle."

– Natalie Swann, project archaeologist at Durham University

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Your reaction to horse 'neknomination' prank

There has been a backlash on Twitter from people disapproving of the prank carried out by Inky Ralph. She rode a horse through a Bishop Auckland supermarket for a neknomination video.

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@itvtynetees there some hilarious, harmless neknominations! There are some idiots who are going to far. As always in life!

RSPCA discussing welfare of Tesco horse

Police and the RSPCA are looking into whether any criminal offences took place when a horse was ridden into a supermarket. Police were called by staff at the Tesco store in St Helen Auckland after Inky Ralph rode her horse into the premises.

“Officers have viewed the in-store security footage as well as the video clip which has been circulating on social media. We will be arranging for those involved to attend their local police station at the earliest opportunity. At this stage we are trying to establish what criminal offences might have been committed and discussions have taken place with the RSPCA in regards to the welfare of the horse."

– Durham Constabulary

Officers say staff members were allegedly threatened before a group left the supermarket.

“It goes without saying this was a senseless and foolish thing to do. There were a number of shoppers in the store at the time and it is fortunate no-one was hurt.”

– Durham Constabulary
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