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Last Updated: Thursday, 2 June, 2005, 10:08 GMT 11:08 UK
Archaeologists' intoxicating find
By David Fuller
BBC News

bottles of lager buried beneath Southampton's Guildhall
The bottles were in good condition, but the liquid inside was not
Archaeologists searching for remains of a city's medieval past have made an intoxicating discovery - a cache of World War II beer.

The hundred-or-so bottles of lager buried beneath Southampton's Guildhall Square were still capable of developing a head when they were opened.

It is thought they had been stored in the cellar of an off-licence which was destroyed in the Blitz.

The routine dig was to study the site before a new arts centre was built.

Pete Cottrell, the dig leader, was hoping to find evidence of a medieval leper hospital known to have been in the area.

He said the bottles were in very good condition, but the liquid inside was not.

"I think you'd be very ill if you drank that, it's absolutely rank."

Some of the bottles have now been handed to the city's museum, while the rest has been reburied.


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"I think you'd be very ill if you drank it"



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