THE regional government will permit archaeological excavations at Benidorm’s Castillo.
No vestiges remain of the castle that gave its name to the emblematic plaza between the Levante and Poniente beaches but the town hall has finally received permission to search for them.
Excavations will begin as soon as possible as the town hall has until November to carry out the work, explained Benidorm’s Historic Heritage councillor Ana Pellicer.
The dig will cost €1.2 million but €500,000 of this will be covered by the European Regional Development Fund, she explained.
Although it is uncertain how long the excavations will last, the Culture and Patrimony department’s authorisation gives a six-month time limit.
This means that part of the Castillo will be dug up during the high season, Pellicer conceded, while stressing that the town hall intends the excavations to be another tourist attraction.
“We want them to be instructive so that visitors can witness the process,” said the councillor, who did not rule out conducted tours of the site.
Benidorm’s castle-fortress that once crowned the Plaza del Castell was destroyed in 1812 during Spain’s War of Independence against France.
Archaeological soundings made in 1993 and again in 2014 confirmed the castle’s existence but this will be the first time that the site can be excavated.