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  1. ITV Report

Scientists find 'oldest northerner'

Scientists from Liverpool John Moores University and the University of Nottingham say they have analysed 10,000-year-old human bones from southern Cumbria - the oldest known person in northern Britain.

Found in a cave on the north side of Morecambe Bay in the early 1990s, newly published scientific research shows that the leg bones date from a 'warm snap' just after the last Ice Age.

Scientists already knew that humans existed in Cumbria at that time, having discovered their stone tools. But the bone analysis, also found with elk and horse, suggests similarities between humans in Cumbria and other caves excavated in Somerset which date from around the same time.

Ian Smith, archaeologist and PhD student at Liverpool John Moores University, said: "Previous cave burials of humans from around this date have been in southern England, with later dates further north. However, the date of this human femur is contemporary"

Leg bones of the oldest known northerner Credit: Credit: Liverpool John Moores University
The 10,000-year-old femur bone Credit: Credit: Liverpool John Moores University