Roman busts uncovered in HS2 archaeological dig loaned to Aylesbury museum

Female head of Roman statue discovered at the site of old St Mary’s church in Stoke Mandeville Credit: HS2

Two rare Roman heads from busts uncovered during archaeological excavation for the HS2 have been loaned to a museum in Aylesbury.

The artefacts were discovered at St Mary's Church in Stoke Mandeville, Buckinghamshire in October last year.

The three busts - one female, one male and one head of a child - were found in a ditch that experts believe is the foundation of a Roman mausoleum.

HS2 is loaning two of the heads from the three busts to the Discover Bucks Museum, which will be the first time the public will get to see the artefacts.

They go on display on Saturday 16th July until the end of October 2022.

The child’s head from the Roman statue were found underneath a Medieval church that was being excavated Credit: HS2

Helen Wass, Head of Heritage at HS2 Ltd said: "The enormous archaeology programme at HS2 has enabled us to expand our knowledge of the rich history of Britain through each archaeological dig.

"The site of the old St Mary’s Church in Stoke Mandeville has offered numerous fascinating details which expands our understanding of the site. These incredible stone busts are some of the standout objects revealed during our investigation programme. It is great to be able to start sharing these with the local community working with the Discover Bucks Museum to put them on display."

Sam Mason, Chief Executive at Discover Bucks Museum said: "We are delighted to have the Roman heads here at the Museum and on display to the public for the first time. They will feature in the archaeology section of our new galleries which were intentionally designed to enable us to display locally excavated, significant finds such as these."