Bronze Age burial site uncovered in Lancashire field

image copyrightMatthew Hepworth/PA
image captionThe burial ground was used from the late Neolithic period to the middle or late Bronze Age

A Bronze Age burial site uncovered after two metal detector enthusiasts found artefacts is set to be excavated.

Matthew Hepworth and David Kierzek discovered a chisel and a dagger in a Lancashire field, 20 years after one of them first explored the site.

This led to the uncovering of an ancient barrow at the site, which lay untouched for thousands of years.

The men will take part in a dig in July, which is being financed with a £49,500 Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

Mr Hepworth, 40, said: "This site is untouched which makes it very, very rare. It wouldn't have been discovered if we hadn't found those artefacts.

"I've been on the site five times before over 20 years, but metal items do move in the ground.

'As good as it gets'

"It was just a lucky find on the day. The first thing I found was a chisel, which is quite rare, there's only a handful in Britain. Then we found a dagger and other pieces in bronze."

Previously, Mr Hepworth, who works as a community nurse, had discovered a stash of Viking silver in the area, which is displayed at Lancaster City Museum.

He said finding the burial monument, which was used for around 1,500 years from the late Neolithic period to the middle or late Bronze Age, is "as good as it gets".

The excavation will be carried out by DigVentures, a crowdfunding group founded by the three archaeologists concerned about the lack of funds for archaeological digs.

Brendon Wilkins, archaeologist and projects director at DigVentures, said barrows are the "best windows we have into the lives and deaths of Bronze Age Britons".

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