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Stone the Crows... Dig Uncovers a Humble Patio

Archaeologists were left red-faced when an excavation site they believed was a Norse settlement of "national significance" was actually a sunken patio. Experts rushed to the site when amateur archaeologists unearthed a meshwork of massive stones while exploring the ground in their garden.

Officials from Fife Council suspected the slabs had been ferried from a nearby beach about 1000 years ago to the homes of Viking settlers. The archaeologists hoped the tiny back garden in Buckhaven would provide the first evidence of Viking homes built on mainland Scotland. The team sealed off the area but after several days of painstaking excavation, they found the massive rocks were simply part of a sunken patio built in the 1940s.

Chief archaeologist Douglas Speirs, 34, admitted his team had been made to look "very stupid". He said: "We looked at the slabs and guessed they could've been part of a Viking settlement considering the area has strong links to Norse culture. It had all the hallmarks of ancient building techniques with the types of stones used and the layout. After all our efforts, you can imagine how silly we felt in the end."

nickbrand Posted by nickbrand
9th January 2004ce
Edited 9th January 2004ce

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