Page last updated at 10:36 GMT, Wednesday, 2 April 2008 11:36 UK

Dig team finds medieval gateway

One side of the newly discovered gateway
A 20th Century gate post was removed to reveal the medieval gateway

Archaeologists in Somerset have uncovered evidence of a medieval gateway at Taunton Castle.

The team made the discovery during excavations as part of the Museum of Somerset Project which will see the castle restored and modernised.

The project has recently been given a boost from the Heritage Lottery Fund of 4.8m.

This will go towards the overall project costs of 6.5m. The excavations form the first stage of the project.

Somerset County Council archaeologist Chris Webster said: "Whenever we have the chance to look at the archaeology of Taunton Castle it always comes up with some surprises.

"We have removed a 20th Century gate post and discovered that a much earlier medieval gateway survives, linking the Castle's inner courtyard with structures currently in the garden of the Castle Hotel.

"Small excavations like this, undertaken with local volunteers, are gradually adding to our plan of the castle - which is, however, still very confused."

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