| 6 August 2003
Seahenge could go on display in 2005
Seahenge could go on public display for the first time in the summer of 2005. The future of the 4000-year-old Bronze Age timber circle has been the subject of fierce debate since its controversial excavation from the beach at Holme, near Hunstanton (England), in 1999.
County councillors have now decided the internationally-important find should form the focal point of a £800,000 redevelopment of Lynn Museum at King's Lynn. Norfolk's museums and archaeology service is making a bid for Lottery cash towards the scheme and, if all goes to plan, work could start towards the end of next year. English Heritage is in the process of choosing a specialist firm to carry out the conservation of the structure, which is being kept at the Flag Fen Bronze Age site near Peterborough.
Originally, it was thought that only a third or about 20 of the timber posts could be included in the display, but there are now plans to accommodate more than half of them. "The smaller timber posts should be conserved by the middle of 2005," said Norfolk Archaeological Unit's archaeology and environment officer, Brian Ayers. "We always knew the larger central tree was far too big to do by then – nobody in the world has conserved anything as big as that. It's going to take a lot longer, so at the moment we are discussing a replica for the tree, which will go on display until it can be replaced by the original."
The role of Seahenge in the new-look museum, which is expected to re-open to visitors around mid-summer, 2005, was explained to a public meeting at Holme Village Hall. "There were a lot of folk who would like to see the whole thing on display, but there was a general consensus that it was a move forward – we did stress it could be put on full display at a later date," said Mr Ayers. "It does get it on display back in West Norfolk, within a stable environment and, importantly, within one which is already a focus for activity. It should be good."
Source: EDP24 News (5 August 2003)
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