April 30, 2019 1.18 pm This story is over 31 months old

Roman burial ground found behind Lincoln hotel

Around 22 skeletons have been found

Around 22 adult and infant skeletons were found at a Roman burial site behind a hotel in Lincoln.

Archaeologists previously found around 30 dead Roman remains at 64 Newland in 2016. At a similar time around 11-12 roman burials were found on the site of the Sarah Swift building.

Now a new discovery has been made. PCAS Archaeology, based in Saxilby, have been working on site in the car park behind the Holiday Inn on Brayford Wharf North for the last three weeks, where around 22 skeletons were found.

The main Roman cemetery at Newland is over to the west and north of this site.

Around 22 adult and infant skeletons were found at what is believed to be a roman burial site. Photo: Joseph Verney for The Lincolnite

Around 22 skeletons were found including adults and infants. It is believed at least two of the skeletons are female, but this is not yet confirmed.

The team also found a charnel pit – used for human remains.

An evaluation trench was on site in 2016 as part of a planning process for the development to see what archaeological deposits there were. Seven burials were found in the trench at the time before they went back to be mitigated.

Adult remains were found on site. Photo: Joseph Verney for The Lincolnite

City council archaeologists mitigated the findings and decided the best course of action before PCAS were recently sent to the site.

Project Officer Julian Sleap told The Lincolnite that this site is “the edge of the burial ground as we know it”.

Project Officer Julian Sleap showing where human remains of a child were found. Photo: Joseph Verney for The Lincolnite

The remains of a child skeleton. Photo: Joseph Verney for The Lincolnite

Julian said: “It’s very exciting, it shows even the edge of the known cemetery is still getting inhumations turning up but interestingly no cremations.

“Hopefully these burials will give us insight into social status and what sort of diets they had. Soil samples have been taken from the head and stomach areas.

The burial site. Photo: Joseph Verney for The Lincolnite

“We found a deviant burial which implies it deviates from the norm. The inhumation was laid straight out on his back in the coffin. It deviated from the norm because the head was removed and placed between the feet.”

The team have been digging and, once a skeleton is exposed, a scale drawing is done and photographs are taken to give them a specific skeleton record number. They are then later lifted into bags and taken back to PCAS’ offices to be looked at and cleaned up.

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