Five of the most remarkable Neolithic, Iron Age and Tudor finds in Yorkshire in the last five years

The horse skeletons were buried to look as if they were leaping out of the grave
The horse skeletons were buried to look as if they were leaping out of the grave
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Some amazing discoveries have been made by archaeologists working in Yorkshire in recent years.

They include what could be East Yorkshire’s first Woodhenge and possible sauna, a beautiful gold armlet discovered in a farmer's field and a "ritually speared" warrior.

Excavations on the Neolithic site at Little Catwick which uncovered a "Woodhenge"

Excavations on the Neolithic site at Little Catwick which uncovered a "Woodhenge"

But the most remarkable of all must be the chariot found buried with two horses on a building site in Pocklington, East Yorkshire in 2018.

The skeletons of the horses were still in an upright position, with their back legs bent and hooves just off the ground, as if they were jumping upwards out of the grave.

Lying inside the chariot in a fetal position was a "highly regarded" man in his late 40s, possibly a local chieftan, surrounded by the bones of six piglets - a huge funerary feast - along with a well-preserved shield.

East Yorkshire is known for its chariot burials, but Paula Ware from MAP Archaeological Practice said this particular rite had “no British parallel”.

The armlet is worn for the first time in 4,000 years

The armlet is worn for the first time in 4,000 years

East Yorkshire's first Woodhenge? And did it include a sauna?

In 2017 archaeologists spent months excavating a timber circular monument at Little Catwick Quarry near Hornsea.

Built at least 4,000 years ago in the late Neolithic to Bronze Age, it was constructed out of a series of wooden posts.

Later an encircling ditch and bank was added with two opposing entrances, one facing north west, the other south east.

Artist's impression of Iron Age chariot burial

Artist's impression of Iron Age chariot burial

Intriguingly, a pit was discovered in the middle of the henge containing heavily burnt stones, while others were found discarded in the entrances.

Archaeologists said it would have been a meeting place for people to come together, and maybe to cremate bodies, which were then buried elsewhere.

Or it may have been used at some point as a sauna.

Finds elsewhere at Marden Henge in Wiltshire suggest people were heating up stones on an external fire then carrying them into a building and placing them on an internal hearth.

Two horse skeletons and in the background a chariot wheel discovered during a dig in Pocklington

Two horse skeletons and in the background a chariot wheel discovered during a dig in Pocklington

People sat around the hearth, pouring water onto the stones to bask in the steam in the same way native American Indians used to create sweat lodges.

Dig uncovers 'ritually speared’ warrior in ancient grave

Pocklington is turning out to be a hotbed of archaeological discovery as fields are dug up for building new housing estates.

In 2016 archaeologists - again led by Paula Ware - revealed that they had found the remains of a youthful warrior in an Iron Age cemetery, who had been ritually speared “to release his spirit”, more than 2,000 years ago.

Four spears had been placed in his spine and one in his groin.

‘Speared-corpse’ burials of the British Iron Age - conventionally dated between 800BC to 43AD - are extremely rare.

Hundreds of Iron Age burials have been but fewer than 25 individuals were subjected to this rite - and all were in East Yorkshire.

Some experts believe the rite was the ancient equivalent to a 21-gun salute at a military funeral.

Ancient gold found in East Yorkshire potato field

Trevor Sherwood stumbled across the 4,000-year-old armlet when he was out detecting in a potato field.

Sadly the early Bronze Age jewellery had been damaged by ploughing.

A treasure trove inquest was held in Hull last year, with coroner Prof Paul Marks explaining that the high gold content - 82 to 84 per cent - made it relatively soft and prone to damage.

Farmer Andy Watson said he and Mr Sherwood would share whatever the piece fetches.

And finally Henry VIII's cannon turns up in Hull next to the Deep aquarium

The most recent discovery in February 2019 dates back to Tudor times. What appears to be part of a cannon was found by archaeologists excavating a Henry VIII blockhouse in Hull.

When the team last investigated the site more than 20 years ago they found a breech-loading cannon identical to the ones recovered from Henry VIII’s sunken flagship the Mary Rose.

They think the piece they have found in the South Blockhouse could be the chopped through barrel, and may have exploded during firing.

But they won't know for sure until it is sent away for further analysis.