Roman burial ground found at car park

A digger working in Oundle Road EMN-151106-162542009
A digger working in Oundle Road EMN-151106-162542009

A Roman burial ground may have been uncovered at a former car park in Oundle Road with the remains of one body having already been seen by archaeologists.

A number of graves have been found and excavations to reveal further details are expected to begin soon at the site in Woodston, near Sugar Way.

The former Peterborough Telegraph printing press site is being developed into 86 homes by Persimmon Homes which is waiting for a licence from the Ministry of Justice to begin the excavations.

An archaeologist confirmed last week that remains had been found during an earlier evaluation at the site.

A spokesman for Persimmon said it is known from previous trial works that the site lies on the edge of an Iron Age settlement and is likely to be associated with the Bronze Age/Iron Age settlement excavated at the nearby former British Sugar factory.

The spokesman added: “The Johnston Press settlement would appear to have continued in use through to the Roman period and a number of burials and cremations, believed to be of Roman date, have been uncovered.”

The excavations are expected to halt the ongoing works for two to three weeks.

Paul Gajos of CgMs, archaeological consultants for Persimmon, said: “We are still at a very early stage in the excavation of this site and it is far too soon to be able to give any real detail. So far the only features that we have exposed are a number of ditches and pits which are consistent with the picture of Iron Age and Roman occupation of the area known from other excavations in the vicinity.

“A small number of burials and cremations, currently believed to be of Roman date, have also been exposed, which will be lifted following receipt of a licence from the Ministry of Justice.”