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A dig is taking place in Northumberland with hopes of finding a camp belonging to the Viking Great Army.

Viking Great Army: archaeologists start search for viking age camp
Dr Jane Kershaw believes the site was used by the Vikings in the 9th Century

Archaeologists are working at a site in the Coquet Valley

Dr Jane Kershaw from Oxford University, who is leading the dig, said it may have been used by the famous commander Halfdan to launch attacks on the Picts.

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A number of objects have been found there over the years, using metal detectors, such as lead gaming pieces and copper coins known as stycas.

'Incredible finds'

Volunteers are also working at the field, which Dr Kershaw believes could have been home to a "town of tents" in the 9th Century.

"They found some incredible finds that can really only belong to the Viking Great Army and their activities in the 870s ," Dr Kershaw told BBC Radio Newcastle.

"I don't think we are looking at many structures that would leave lots of archaeological traces because they are only here for a short amount of time."

She said it would be difficult to put a number on those who were there but believes the site could have spanned between 20 and 50 hectares.

"It's not just the warriors who are here but a whole kind of people who were involved in supplying and maintaining the camps - you are not on mission a lot so I think there's a lot of sitting around, hence the gaming pieces we have found," she added.

"What we haven't found yet is any silver - if we found some silver I think everyone would be very happy."


“Northumberland dig: Archaeologists start search for Viking Great Army camp”. BBC. London. 10 oct. 2022. 13 oct. 2022. <>.

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