Ice-age mammoths unearthed in the Cotswolds

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Ice-age mammoths unearthed in the Cotswolds
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Ice-age mammoths unearthed in the Cotswolds after 220,000 years.

In an exceptional discovery, five Ice-age mammoths have been discovered perfectly preserved in the Cotswolds. The remains were discovered near Swindon and the find will be explored by Sir David Attenborough as part of a new documentary.

Viewers will be able to see Attenborough and the Mammoth Graveyard on December 30, on BBC1. Sir David will be joined by Professor Ben Garrod and DigVentures archaeologists. The documentary will feature the excavation of the ice-age mammoths.

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Speaking to The Observer Garrod commented on the incredible find. He said: “This is one of the most important discoveries in British palaeontology.”

“Where these mammoths lie in the ground is exactly where they died a quarter of a million years ago – next to incredible things like stone tools and the snails they trampled underfoot.

“We have evidence of what the landscape was like. We know what plants were growing there. The little things are really revealing the context of these big, iconic giants. It’s a glimpse back in time. That’s incredibly important in terms of us understanding how climate change especially impacts environments, ecosystems and species.”


DigVentures archaeologist Lisa Westcott Wilkins explained how rare it is to find remains so well preserved. She revealed: “Exciting doesn’t cover it. Other mammoths have been found in the UK but not in this state of preservation. They’re in near-pristine condition. You can’t take it in.”

She went on to add: “Archaeological sites from this period are rare, and critical for understanding Neanderthal behaviour across Britain and Europe. Why did so many mammoths die here? Could Neanderthals have killed them? What can they tell us about life in ice-age Britain? The range of evidence at this site gives us a unique chance to address these questions.”


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Alex Glenn is a reporter for Spain’s largest English-speaking newspaper, Euro Weekly News. Formerly she worked in the NHS for 15 years until relocating to Spain in 2018. She loves the Spanish lifestyle, language and culture and spent several years learning Spanish before moving to Spain for a better quality of life. She has made her home in the mountains in Almeria, where she loves being part of a rural community that has a mix of both expats and Spanish residents. In her spare time, she enjoys hiking, reading and exploring the area where she lives.

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