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Havant ‘Big Dig’ is launched

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PEOPLE are being encouraged to delve into history – by digging a hole in their garden.

Havant-born archaeologist Dr Hannah Fluck will be encouraging people in the area to dig a small test pit and report what they find there.

The Big Dig iniative comes on the back of recent finds in the area which have excited archaeologists.

Last year they stumbled upon a Roman well filled with coins and a bronze ring with a carving of Neptune – the Roman god of the sea – in a garden in Havant town centre.

They have also found the remains of a Roman villa at Warblington and a 2,000-year-old Celtic settlement in a field off Havant Road, in Horndean.

Experts believe there may be many more artefacts – such as Roman pottery and coins – waiting to be discovered in people’s gardens.

Dr Fluck said: ‘I know there are a lot of people who are interested in archaeology who live in Havant and this is a way of getting them to see what they can find, have a bit of fun and learn about what archaeology is. You get to be an archaeologist for the day.

‘Everything people find, I’m going to have a look at all the things that come out of the ground and analyse them with the help of experts from local museums. Then I am going to report back on what we have discovered about the archaeology of Havant.’

Anyone who wants to join can pick up an information pack on how to do the excavation from The Spring, in East Street, Havant. The test pit is about 1m by 1m.

The scheme coincides with a exhibition at The Spring, with displays of recent finds, including Roman roof tiles, Roman wine jugs called amphorae, part of a Roman floor and the bronze ring found in Havant.

Trevor Davies, from Chichester and district archaeology society, said the discoveries at Warblington showed how Havant held a key position – having access to two harbours – in Roman times.

He said salt gathering would have been important.

To pick up a Big Dig pack email Kates@thespring.co.uk or pop into The Spring.

People can come along to a free day at The Spring on Saturday, July 5 from 10am to 3pm to consult a team of experts on anything found.

 

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