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Last Updated: Wednesday, 21 May, 2003, 14:08 GMT 15:08 UK
Stonehenge burials unearthed
The grave was nearly damaged by workers digging a trench
Archaeologists have discovered six more bodies near the grave of the "King of Stonehenge".

The remains of four adults and two children were found at a site in Amesbury, close to where the Amesbury Archer was discovered last year.

The Archer was dubbed the King of Stonehenge because it is thought he had a major role in creating the monument.

Dr Andrew Fitzpatrick, of Wessex Archaeology, said: "This new find is really unusual. It is exceptionally rare to find the remains of so many people in one grave like this in southern England.

Different generations

"The grave is fascinating because we are seeing the moment when Britain was moving from the Stone Age into the Bronze Age, around 2,300BC."

The latest bones discovered are some 4,500 years old - the same age as the Archer.

Radiocarbon tests will be carried out to find more precise dates for the burials but the people are believed to have lived during the building of Stonehenge.

Wessex Archaeology said it is possible the bones are those of people from different generations, as the grave seems to have been reopened to allow further burials to be made.

The bones of the earlier burials were mixed up but those of the later burials, a man and a child, were undisturbed.

The grave, which is about three miles from Stonehenge, was nearly damaged during the digging of a water trench close by.

The new discovery was found almost a year after the Amesbury Archer was discovered during excavation for a housing scheme at Boscombe Down.

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