New Sandy dig may reveal roadside Roman homes

editorial image

The archaeological excavation of Sandy’s future cemetery extension and council depot site is to enter its final stage.

The third phase of the excavation will see the final section of the site, closest to Stratford Road, excavated.

Archaeologists have suggested that it is possible this remaining small section of the site may uncover evidence of buildings which would have fronted a Roman road.

After it was revealed the dig so far had uncovered more of Sandy’s Roman past, including the skeleton of a Roman elderly woman, almost 400 members of the public came along to see the site and speak with archaeologists at an open day at the site in July.

The full scale archaeological excavation of the site is a planning requirement which must be undertaken and paid for by the Town Council as part of the cemetery extension and depot build.

The cost of the excavation works, archaeological fieldwork, reinstatement of land, post-excavation analysis, editing and archiving will cost the council £75,595.

Due to the significance of the site the council is required by planning to have the excavation formally written up into an archaeological report which must be publicised.

Indicative costs for the analysis and publication are £25,000.

The council has planned for this expenditure, which will be funded via an internal loan from funds held by the council.

Once the excavation of this final section is completed Central Bedfordshire Council will sign off on the excavation and the Town Council will start work on the building of a much-needed council storage depot and the beginning of the cemetery extension, including a car park for use by visitors.