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Last Updated: Thursday, 26 January 2006, 06:33 GMT
Town dig unearths medieval past
One of the largest archaeological digs undertaken on Teesside has provided experts with new insight into medieval life in the area.

The dig is part of a multi-million pound project to create a new town square at Hartlepool's Headland.

The excavation is the largest seen in the Headland area in 20 years.

Experts say they are delighted with the finds so far, which include a row of medieval properties, pots and relics of iron smelting.

Rachel Grahame, project officer with Tees Archaeology, which is carrying out the dig, said: "Hartlepool must now be one of the most excavated towns in Britain, and we are discovering more and more of what life was like in the medieval period.

Bronze spoon

"We are finding a lot more items than we expected, and these finds are certainly of regional importance.

"There are not many small medieval towns which have been explored to the extent of the one here in Hartlepool."

The remains of a row of medieval properties have been discovered, complete with the foundations of the house walls and back yards, plus wells and the relics of industries such as iron smelting and baking.

Individual items found range from a bronze spoon and a complete medieval pot - which was possibly used as a metal smith's storage pot for scrap - to household waste including various animal bones and seafood shells.

The dig, which is expected to last until March, is being supported by the North Hartlepool Partnership, which is using money from regional development agency One NorthEast to revitalise the area.


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