Loftus royal treasure attracts 28,000 to Redcar museum

Some of the Princess' jewellery that will be on display
Image caption Some of the pieces are associated with a rare bed burial

A collection of 7th Century treasure found in Loftus has attracted more than 28,000 visitors after being put on display in Redcar.

The artefacts, on display since May, were found between 2005 and 2007 at the only known Anglo-Saxon royal burial site in north-east England.

On show at Kirkleatham Museum, they have been hailed by archaeologists as some of the rarest discovered.

Redcar & Cleveland councillor Sheelagh Clarke said she was "delighted".

The artefacts were uncovered by Teesside archaeologist Steve Sherlock, together with members of the Teesside Archaeological Society, at a 109-grave site at Street House, Loftus.

Mr Sherlock said: "This is a spectacular discovery that has attracted the imagination and attention of people from all over the country."

'Incredible story'

After their discovery the objects were declared treasure by a coroner and following a debate in the House of Commons, they were allowed to remain in Redcar and purchased with the aid of a Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

Councillor Sheelagh Clarke said: "Attracting more than 28,000 people in the space of just four months is a remarkable achievement.

"The Saxon Princess exhibition is one of the most important ever seen in this region and we are delighted that so many people have wanted to learn more about the incredible story behind it."

Some of the pieces from the collection are associated with a rare bed burial in which a female body was laid out on a decorated wooden bed accompanied by fine gold jewellery.

The finds included a princess' gold pendant, glass beads, pottery, iron knives and belt buckles.

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