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Research park may throw light on area's ancient history

Thursday, 10th May 2012.

A big dig in Haverhill this summer could come up with vital clues about the beginning and end of Roman occupation in the area and in Britain generally.

A detailed archaeological investigation is to take place on the Haverhill Research Park site to reveal more about the early history of the area, before the site is developed.

The investigation has been commissioned by the developer Carisbrooke Investments which has already participated in pre-development trenching in co-operation with the local planning authority.

This has identified significant prehistoric and Roman remains on the site, comprising the homes of people living in the Haverhill area over 2,000 years ago.

Nic Rumsey, director of Carisbrooke Developments, said: “While we are involved in the future economic growth of Haverhill, we are, of course, keen to participate in discovering the archaeology of the site and this is the means whereby we are able to extend our knowledge of human history beyond the limits of written records.”

Joe Abrams, regional manager of Headland Archaeology, which is carrying out the investigation, said: “This is a welcome opportunity to reveal and investigate the remains of both prehistoric and Roman farming communities.

“Our research focus will be sensitive to the exact remains revealed at the site, and is expected to include the changes which took place as a result of the Roman Conquest and also those which came with the disintegration of that empire and the economy which survived within it.

“We believe the remains at Haverhill span both both of these crucial changes, allowing us to tell the story of a Suffolk farming community on a local level and to reflect on how these major national/international events affected their way of life.

Following completion of the works in July, the archaeological team will leave the site and the analysis of finds and samples (seeds, insects and other microscopic remains) taken will commence.

This will lead to a publication of the findings and as Haverhill moves to a more prosperous future as a result of the Research Park, new findings will have been made on the town's ancient origins.

Carisbrooke said it was a perfect example of how development could work with archaeology to reveal and distribute new knowledge on our collective past which would otherwise not have come to light.

Haverhill Online News

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