Hoxne: Villagers get digging in hunt for treasure

The Hoxne Heritage Group's archaelogical dig took place throughout the village. Jo Caruth (senior pr

The Hoxne Heritage Group's archaelogical dig took place throughout the village. Jo Caruth (senior project officer, Suffolk County Council Archaelogical Service) looks at some of the finds. - Credit: Archant

People have been digging up a village in the hunt for artefacts which would help explain its heritage.

Almost 30 one-metre deep archaeological excavation pits were opened up at the Hoxne Community Dig, in the village near Eye over a three-day event.

The project has been led by the Hoxne Heritage Group with support from Suffolk County Council.

Jo Caruth, senior project officer for the council’s Archaeological Services, said: “It has been a wide-ranging community event taking place throughout the village and has involved the general public in learning about how we do archaeological digs professionally. It has also given us a chance to become involved in the community.”

Eric Lawes, who discovered the Hoxne Hoard – the largest amount of Roman gold ever found on British soil – checked the test pits with a metal detector but no amounts of the precious metal were found.

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Resident Richard Giffin, who was involved in the dig, said: “This has been a fantastic weekend – I have spoken to so many villagers that I hadn’t met before and we have had several neighbours pop around to help with our test pit. There has been some great camaraderie with light-hearted rivalry between pit teams to see who had found the most significant artefacts or dug the deepest hole.”

Artefacts were discovered dating back to the 12th and 13th centuries including shards of medieval pottery.

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Further analysis of the finds to determine their significance is now being carried out by the council.

In May a team of students from the village primary school excavated pits as part of the overall project which has been funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund. To follow the project go to www.hoxnehistory.org.uk

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