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Local dig reveals region's Iron Age secrets

Credit: ITV Border

Archaeologists have returned to an Iron Age site in Cumbria.

The site located in High Carlingill within Lunesdale, near Teebay, is undergoing excavation for the second time by the Lunesdale Archaeological Society (LAS).

They hope the current excavation, backed by a Heritage Lottery fund, will help to shed light on the region's pre-Roman history.

First occupied over 2000 years ago - from 200 BC- 500 AD - the Carlingill site was first identified in the 1970s through the use of aerial photography.

Initial excavations in 2017 revealed evidence of Iron Age buildings and native occupation from quern stones, which were used to grind flour.

The team hope the current dig will provide further evidence of Iron Age occupation, determining whether people lived their for a long period of time.

They also interested in revealing the relationship between the Iron Age people and the nearby Roman fort at Low Borrowbridge.

"Last year, we found evidence of round buildings, including flagstone" says Jan Hicks, one of the local LAS members involved in organising the dig.

"Since last year's dig, we've been able to date our findings and we now know that the site was occupied in 200 BC, long before the Romans arrived, and in 500 AD, after they left."

What we now need to do is fill that time gap with more finds to see if there was continuous occupation between those dates or just a spasmodic settlement and to explore the connections with the Roman fort, less than a kilometre away."

– Jan Hicks, LAS
Credit: ITV Border

Pupils of Orton School, near Tebay, were given special access to the site learning about life in their area 2000 years ago.

Through a series of talks by on-site archaeologists, as well as witnessing first-hand the discovery of artefacts, it is hoped that the pupils came away from the experience with a deeper understanding and appreciation of their local history.

LAS are keen to offer those with an interest in history the opportunity to volunteer and become involved with the project.

The dig will run from 20 May to 4 June. Further details can be found on the LAS website.