From the Comet:

ARCHAEOLOGY enthusiasts found Roman artefacts when they excavated three test pits.

Members of Norton Community Archaeology Group organised the excavation in gardens in Caslon Way, Letchworth GC.

They knew Roman pottery had been found on the site when the houses were built in 1955 and they wanted to find out more.

They were assisted by pupils of Fearnhill School in Letchworth GC and members of the Young Archaeologists' Club.

In one pit, they found pieces of a cooking pot and part of a flagon for holding drink. In another pit, part of a mortarium - a grinding bowl that was used as a food processor - was found. These two pits were about 50 metres apart, suggesting the settlement covered quite a large area.

In the base of one of the pits, the surface of a yard was also uncovered.

These finds show the site was probably a large farmstead or a farming hamlet. Others have been found nearby at Hawthorn Hill, and Archers Way.

Mr Fitzpatrick-Matthews said: "We found exactly what we were looking for - Roman pottery from a village that stood here 1900 years ago. It may not be a temple or an amphitheatre, but it's still important evidence about the story of Letchworth.