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College's legion of Roman artefacts: Eight skeletons among finds

By This is Lincolnshire  |  Posted: April 06, 2011

Chris Clay, a director at Allen Archeology Ltd, holds up a Roman coin.

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A HAUL of ancient artefacts including eight skeletons were unveiled when Lincoln College's archaeological dig was opened up for a day.

The excavations to date have identified the skeletons as being that of an adult couple, as well as some children, buried in a Christian Roman manner.

Allen Archaeology guided onlookers around the site which is shedding light on the history of the place where the college now stands.

One of the burials included one with a copper alloy bracelet.

There are other Roman period features including pits and ditches which are producing artefacts including coins and pottery.

Down-slope from the Roman remains, medieval features are being excavated and recorded.

These include a "keyhole" oven along with further ditches and pits.

Chris Clay, director of Allen Archaeology, said: "We knew because of the area it was in that there would be a lot of archaeology.

"What is great is that there are the nice finds like the pots and coins, it makes it all a lot more interesting for people working on the site or visiting.

"The reaction of the Lincoln College staff who came down was really positive.

"The upper part of the site had the top levels stripped away by modern developments so most of what we found was from the Roman period.

"Further down there was deeper soil so we discovered things from the medieval period as well.

"We found a cobbled road that could be an early precursor to Monks Road and there were rubbish mounds that held lots of finds from various periods."

There may be Roman remains under the medieval features in the southern part of the site and these will largely be protected and preserved underneath the new building.

Ian Sackree, vice-principal of corporate resources at the college, said: "The Lincoln College site is steeped in rich history, but as we travel between classrooms and buildings going about daily college life, it is something that rarely creeps into our minds.

"These incredible archaeological finds have reminded us what existed before us – providing a unique opportunity for staff and students to explore the history that lies directly under their feet."

Lincoln College funded the dig as part of the £7 million Deans Building project which will create a sport and health facility on the site.

The excavation work has now finished and the site will be closed off to allow work to begin on the Deans Building.

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