ANCIENT remains dating back to the Iron Age could be found under an East Yorkshire field earmarked for more than 300 homes.
The large new Barratt and David Wilson Homes development is recommended for approval at a meeting next week, despite objections from local residents.
According to a report to East Riding councillors, work on the first phase of the development revealed a potential Romano-British ladder settlement, with eight enclosures laid out along a pair of parallel trackway ditches.
The Humber Historic Environment Record, which records and promotes archaeology in the area, thinks groundworks are “highly likely” to encounter remains from the Iron Age and Romano-British periods, it added.
The report, written by council planners, said: “Phase one of the development to the north was subject to archaeological works which revealed a number of enclosures, pits, gullies and ditches...likely representing a Romano-British ladder settlement.
“A geo-physical survey has been carried out on this site which has revealed a number of areas of interest and it is highly likely that any groundworks in the area would encounter archaeological remains.”
The proposals for 349 houses on land south of Tranby Park Farm, on Jenny Brough Lane, are being opposed by Hessle Town Council, which says building 42 homes per hectare is “overdevelopment”.
Neighbours also raised concerns about trees being removed, the potential for flooding and the “vast” increase in traffic along Jenny Brough Lane.
However the plans, due to be discussed at County Hall in Beverley on Thursday, are recommended for approval, subject to the signing of a legal agreement, including a financial contribution towards improvements to local roads and the A63 Humber Bridgehead junction with the A15.
The developers have also committed to retaining tree belts along the eastern and western boundary, the report says.
David Wilson Homes said a geo-physical survey identified a number of “potential anomalies” which would be investigated by trial trenching, before development begins.
If any artefacts are found, then further works would then be undertaken and they would be “appropriately recorded”.
A statement said the extent and position of the trenches has already been agreed with the local authorities’ consultant, Humber Archaeology.
The developer said they were “always extremely careful to preserve and record significant findings” as demonstrated at a site at Pocklington, where 75 square barrows were found containing remains from the Arras Culture.
The internationally significant discovery, announced in 2016, was aired on BBC Four’s Digging for Britain.