Excitement as archaeologists uncover rare Roman items during Wakefield dig

Archaeologists leading a dig in a Wakefield village have uncovered rare and exciting items believed to date from Roman times.

Tuesday, 27th April 2021, 4:48 pm
Archaeologists leading a dig in a Wakefield village have uncovered rare and exciting items believed to date from Roman times. Stock image. Photo: Adrian Dennis/Getty Images
Archaeologists leading a dig in a Wakefield village have uncovered rare and exciting items believed to date from Roman times. Stock image. Photo: Adrian Dennis/Getty Images

The team responsible for carrying out the dig, which is taking place at Farm Lane in Kinsley, near Fitzwilliam, said it was "important work" which would help unlock fresh insights into the lives of people living in the area almost 2,000 years ago.

The dig, which began earlier this month, came about after an earlier project at the site uncovered an ancient kiln.

It is being carried out by the West Yorkshire Joint Services’ Archaeological Services, backed by Wakefield Council.

The team responsible for carrying out the dig, which is taking place at Farm Lane in Kinsley, near Fitzwilliam, said it was "important work" which would help unlock fresh insights into the lives of people living in the area almost 2,000 years ago. Pictured is the entrance to the field.

And archaeologists hope that the discovery of the rare kilns could help further understanding of what life was like in the area in years gone by.

Clare Elliott, Service Director for Economic Growth and Skills at Wakefield Council, said:“We are very pleased to have appointed West Yorkshire Joint Services’ Archaeological Services to investigate land at Farm Lane, Kinsley near Fitzwillliam for evidence of Roman life.

"This fascinating work could unlock fresh knowledge and insight into the lives of people living in our district in the Roman period.

“It is very exciting as they have discovered a kiln on the site - it is the second kiln to be found in the vicinity - the first kiln was discovered during an earlier dig in January 2020.

An archaeological dig at Sandal Castle, Wakefield, in 1972. The district has been the site of many important digs and discoveries in recent history.

“Evidence that flagons were being produced here – large pots were also discovered at this time – demonstrate the work people were undertaking in this area.

“The experts are now exploring the site in detail, which has been secured, while this important work is underway.

“They are at the early stage of their work – and at a future date, and in line with the latest government Covid guidance, we would hope to offer opportunities for local residents to visit the site and learn more about the land and the discoveries beneath their feet.”

It is the latest archaeological dig to be carried out in the Wakefield district, which has previously been home to important discoveries about medieval battles at Pontefract Castle and Sandal Castle and even the discovery of Roman coins in a Wakefield garden.

The district's Roman heritage is also celebrated with the annual Castleford Roman Festival.Susan Betteridge, Director of West Yorkshire Joint Services said: “Our archaeologists are particularly excited to be working on this site as Roman kilns are a rare phenomenon in West Yorkshire.

"I can’t wait to see what more they might find.”

Large areas of the field have been fenced off while work is carried out, but the main footpath between Newstead Terrace and Sunnyfield Drive remains open to walkers.