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Archaeologists excavate an ancient burial chamber

Hidden in a field of crops for thousands of years lies an ancient burial site. Credit: ITV West Country

One of the oldest buildings ever discovered in Britain has been unearthed in Wiltshire. A burial chamber which is over 5,000 years old was found by archaeologists.

It was discovered in a field of crops near Salisbury Plain and the site marks the spot where Neolithic folk were laid to rest.

It isn't glamorous work, but the students and researchers are hoping to find clues which will tell us more about our ancestors who left this world with little trace. They are confident their discoveries will reveal lots of information about their lifestyle.

Researchers and students at the site near Salisbury Plain Credit: ITV West Country

Longbarrows were the way to place to be buried 5,000 years ago - the most famous at West Kennet was made of stone. This latest discovery may be even older.

The central rectangle shows the main walls and the shapes to left and right were ditches. Credit: ITV West Country

The archaelogist, Dr Jim Leary, tells us that the burial site was discovered by examining an aerial photograph.

This monument has never been excavated before. It's the first time it's seen the light of day in over 5,000 years. It's an incredible feeling.

We had seen these aerial photographs of the crop marks. We'd seen that it had been ploughed for centuries and centuries. We assumed for the large part the remains had gone.

We never in our wildest dreams thought that we would find the rectangular building within it, the mortar enclosure itself.

– Dr Jim Leary, Archaeologist

Neolithic people may have been a little disappointed at their resting place's 21st century name - the area's know as Catsbrain. But if the measuring, scraping and digging pays off we may soon know more about our mysterious ancestors.