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Page last updated at 11:56 GMT, Wednesday, 9 February 2011
Cheddar Man, the oldest skeleton, to be shown on TV
Cheddar Man reconstruction (NHM)
The National History Museum created this image of the Cheddar Man

Britain's oldest complete skeleton, the Cheddar Man, will feature on BBC Two's A History of Ancient Britain on Wednesday evening.

Cheddar Man lived in the Somerset area 9,000 years ago and was buried in Gough's Cave in Cheddar Gorge, where he was discovered in 1903.

It is believed he has some descendents which still live in the area, including a local history teacher.

The programme at 9pm aims to explore the origins of Britain and its people.

During the show, presenter Neil Oliver also examines 8,000-year-old footprints revealed beneath tidal mud banks in Wales and abseils into a cave dating back 33,000 years.

The historian also reveals how, as the last ice age receded some 11,000 years ago, Britain became an island, a fate that was sealed following a cataclysmic tsunami around 6,000 BC.

'Tremendous interest'

Bob Smart from Cheddar Caves said Cheddar Man brings many people to the area and that it was very popular with school trips.

"People are tremendously interested in anything to do with archaeology and prehistory and ancestry.

"There's a tremendous interest in anything we can discover about the past and all the early archaeology evidence is concentrated in places like Cheddar Cave and Gorge.

"For youngsters living these days who watch telly or go on the computer, it's difficult for them to get an overview of how the world grew up and to realise that we really are the same people as our ancestors were 200,000 years ago."




SEE ALSO
Cave record of Britain's pioneers
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