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News – Underwater Stone Age settlement

September 2007

Underwater Stone Age settlement

Marine archaeologists have been excavating what they believe to be a Stone Age site just off the Isle of Wight coast. Working at depths of 11 metres, divers are revealing evidence of habitation from a time before the English Channel was formed and when Europe and Britain were linked.

Previous excavations have uncovered flint tools and organic material such as acorns, charcoal and worked pieces of wood. The site is unique in Britain and seems to provide evidence of an extensive settlement. There is evidence of hearths and ovens, and divers are hoping that the current excavation will reveal more artefacts and clues to life in the Stone Age.

The team of archaeologists hope to raise sections of the sea floor. These will be carefully analysed in laboratory conditions to uncover layers of sediment and reveal materials that have lain unseen beneath the seabed for thousands of years. The divers are from the Hampshire and Wight Trust for Maritime Archaeology and University of Southampton.
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