15th Dec, 2017

New home for 4,000 year-old Kenilworth burial urn

Leamington Editorial 2nd Mar, 2015 Updated: 28th Oct, 2016

THE BURIAL urn of Kenilworth’s oldest resident is set to go on show in the town.

The 4,000 year-old urn was unearthed by archaeologists from Warwickshire County Council a year ago while foundations were being dug for new homes in Clinton Lane.

The urn contained the cremated remains of Kenilworth’s earliest known human inhabitant, and landowner Stephen Bond donated the find to Kenilworth History and Archaeology Society (KHAS).

Archaeology Warwickshire’s Project Officer Bryn Gethin, who found the burial, said: “I was looking for evidence of medieval settlement, and was surprised to see what looked like cremated bone fragments in the side of a trench.

“Further investigation revealed the bones were underneath a type of prehistoric pot known as a collared urn. These date from the Early Bronze Age period, between 2500BC and 1800BC but we will had to send samples of bone to be radiocarbon dated to confirm the age of the burial.”

Archaeology Warwickshire Business Manager Stuart Palmer was equally excited by the discovery.

He said “Although a few flint tools that are potentially older than this find have previously been discovered in Kenilworth, this is certainly the earliest known human inhabitant of the area. It is possible that the burial was originally covered by a mound that would have been prominent on the skyline but which has long since disappeared.”

The urn will be go on display when the museum reopens to visitors on Easter Sunday, and will be open every Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday until mid-September from 2.30pm to 4.30 pm. It is staffed by volunteers from KHAS and other local organisations and admission is free.

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