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7 July 2009
Prehistoric settlement unearthed in Yorkshire

Remains of some of the earliest houses ever found in the North of England have been unearthed in Bridlington (East Riding of Yorkshire). Archaeologists have discovered that buildings stood on the site of the current Cottage Farm development more than 5,000 years ago. In a significant find, a team uncovered remains of houses, fields, kilns and people during excavations of the area, on the north side of town.
     The findings are detailed in a book 'A Place By The Sea which'. Author Chris Fenton-Thomas said: "This part of East Yorkshire is famous for large ceremonial monuments from the Neolithic period, but it is very rare to find the houses where people were living. We found remains of at least three buildings, which were from between 3500 and 3000 BCE. These are some of the first Neolithic houses ever to be discovered in the north of England, making them some of the earliest buildings ever found here."
     The dig was carried out between 2000 and 2004. Mr Fenton-Thomas said: "The geophysical survey had shown up a load of ditches and we thought they would be Iron Age or Roman. In one of the trenches by the farmhouse we found loads of broken flints and pottery and this we soon realised was Neolithic. This was 2,500 years older than expected. We then dug a bit deeper we found the remains of several houses. They had cobble floors and postholes. Neolithic houses are very rare in England. The only other one from the the north of England had been found in Driffield in the 1980s. After we found the houses we kept making the trench bigger and bigger as more remains came up. In the end we were digging there on and off for five years."

Source: Bridlington Free Press (30 June 2009)

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