Iron Age items found during Long Lawford dig

Iron Age sword shaped currency bar found at Long Lawford.
Iron Age sword shaped currency bar found at Long Lawford.

Evidence of human activity dating back 2,000 years has been discovered at a housing development site in Rugby.

The remains of a Celtic Iron Age village, which would have been the predecessor to the existing Long Lawford village, have been uncovered during a four-month excavation at the Bloor Homes’ The Brambles site, off Back Lane.

X-ray of Iron Age sword shaped currency bar found at Long Lawford.

X-ray of Iron Age sword shaped currency bar found at Long Lawford.

The dig, which was conducted by the University of Leicester Archaeological Services and Cotswold Archaeology, uncovered Iron Age agricultural and pastoral fields.

There was also a number of ditched and fenced enclosures found, described as the Iron Age equivalent of our modern day allotments.

During the first excavations in 2013, a broken chariot or cart wheel was found and in November 2016 a sword shaped currency bar, which would have been used for barter exchanges, was also found.

Both discoveries failed to be detected by metal detector surveys.

Gerry Wait, director for Nexus Heritage, who co-ordinated the excavation said: “This is a very exciting and significant set of discoveries which gives us a clear indication of the human history of this site.

“The fact that both items were found close to each other in the same ditch also indicates that a high status Iron Age blacksmith lived close by who would have both forged and then recycled such items.”

The finds are now undergoing conservation by the University of Leicester Archaeological Services and will then be transferred to Heritage Warwickshire Museum Services, where they may become part of a display.

The excavation has been completed on the first phase of the development and Bloor Homes has started building work, which will see the creation of 100 two, three and four bedroom homes. The first homes are set to be released for sale later this year.