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Last Updated: Thursday, 25 May 2006, 11:36 GMT 12:36 UK
Is Boudicca buried in Birmingham?
Roman re-enactment
Queen Boudicca was defeated by the Roman Army
The burial ground of Queen Boudicca could be next to a burger restaurant in Birmingham, it has been claimed.

An excavation is to take place at the site in Kings Norton after evidence it has Roman remains buried there.

Queen Boudicca, who led ancient tribes in battle against the Romans, died in 62 AD, possibly in the Midlands.

It would be a "world-shattering" find, said Councillor Peter Douglas Osborn. But experts warned there is no evidence the site is linked to Boudicca.

"We are hoping that there will be an archaeological exercise next to the McDonalds site in Kings Norton in order to uncover the possible last battle of Queen Boudicca and Seutonius Paulinus," said Mr Douglas Osborn, a member of Birmingham City Council.

It would be fascinating if it were true but as yet I haven't seen any evidence it is
Dr Simon Esmonde Cleary, Archaeology expert

Of a possible find he told BBC Radio Five Live: "It could be England-shattering if not world-shattering."

Boudicca, also known as Boadicea, became Queen of East Anglia's Iceni tribe when her husband Prasutagus died. She united other Ancient British tribes to fight Roman occupiers.

Her army sacked Colchester and St Albans before facing the Romans, whose main army were marching from north Wales. It is thought the battle may have taken place in the Midlands.

Sceptical experts

But the claim that she was buried in Kings Norton is disputed by Mike Hodder, planning archaeologist at Birmingham City Council.

He said: "There is no doubt that this is an important archaeological site, with remains which are probably Roman in date, but there is no evidence whatsoever of any link with Boadicea."

Dr Simon Esmonde Cleary, an archaeology expert from Birmingham University, was also sceptical about the Boudicca claims.

He said: "The short answer is we don't know where the battle took place, anybody's guess is as good as anyone else's.

"The last time we had Boudicca was in what is now Hertfordshire. We know the Roman Army was coming down from Wales."

He said the battle could have taken place anywhere in between.

"It would be fascinating if it were true but, as yet, I haven't seen any evidence it is," he said.

See the possible location of Boudicca's resting place

Trying to Rule Britannia
06 Aug 04 |  Magazine



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