WHAT is buried under an island in Lincoln's Brayford Pool is a mystery waiting to be solved, according to guardians of the area.
The island, which lies at the south-eastern corner of the pool, is not believed to be a natural formation as the area was built by the Romans.
But, with rumours the area might be of historical interest, members of the group who look after the waterway say they are open to offers from anyone with information or the will to investigate.
John Handley, secretary of the Brayford Trust, said it was rumoured that beneath the modern day island lay the remains of an ancient vessel.
He said: "Following a survey conducted in 1994 by the University of Cambridge, in collaboration with a maritime organisation, an obstruction was discovered south east of the island.
"It was believed to have been an old boat but no conclusive evidence was found."
He said no further work had been carried out because the nature of the site would make it expensive, but he thought it might make an ideal project for a university student.
Until someone decides to take on the task of uncovering the mystery of the Brayford island, the people of Lincoln can only guess what might lay beneath it.
Jennifer Waller Brown, 25, of Lincoln, said she hoped the island may have built up on top of lost pirate treasure.
She said: "Perhaps it is guarded by the spirit of the Lincoln imp."
Originally dug out by Romans and later used by the Vikings, Brayford Pool has operated as an inland port in the city for almost 2,000 years.
In 1964, five years before the Brayford Trust was founded, an operation to clear the pool was conducted and 25 shipwrecks were removed from the water.
The island is believed to be not more than 50 years old. Dr Mick Jones, city archaeologist at the City of Lincoln Council, said: "I'm aware that a sonar survey of the Brayford Pool was done about 20 years ago, which revealed a large object buried at some depth towards the south bank, but we don't know what this is and, without further investigations, we'll never know.
"It could be something ancient or something modern. The pool has been dredged a number of times, which produced finds of medieval and later pottery and other objects, so it is possible that ancient objects will have survived in the parts of the pool that haven't been dredged."