Page last updated at 09:30 GMT, Thursday, 13 August 2009 10:30 UK

Iron-age skeleton found at site

Peak District dig site
The remains were found during the dig at Monsal Dale in the Peak District

An Iron-Age skeleton has been unearthed at the site of an archaeological excavation at an ancient hillfort near Monsal Dale in the Peak District.

The Longstone Local History Group is working at the site which is thought to date from the Iron Age (700BC - 60AD).

The group was aiming to find out how and when the ramparts were built, but during the work came across parts of a crushed skeleton in a rock-cut ditch.

Archaeologist Dr Clive Waddington said it was an important find at the site.

Thigh bones

Dr Waddington said: "The excavation has been tremendously rewarding because it has supplied significant new information for understanding hill forts in the Peak District, a type of monument which has remained poorly understood in the region.

"The finding of organic remains will allow us to finally put in place a chronology for one of the Peak District's impressive hill fort sites."

Only the thigh bones and pelvis were intact, with the skull and ribcage in fragments.

The adult body appeared to have been thrown into the ditch with rocks from the ramparts pushed on top of it, possibly as a result of hostilities at the site.

Work will go on over the next few months to establish its age, sex and possible region of origin.

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