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Mum calling for trail to celebrate history
GRAPHIC designer Karen Waggott is urging developers to create a trail tracking archaeological finds at Didcot’s Great Western Park estate.
More than 3,300 homes are due to be built between the A4130 and the Wantage Road between now and 2026 and hundreds of families have already moved in.
In 2011, archaeologists working for builders Taylor Wimpey revealed the results of a two-year dig, including the remains of a Roman villa and early Bronze Age arrowheads, and in January released more details about their historic finds.
Now mum-of-two Mrs Waggott, from MacDonald Close, wants developers to create a trail recording the history of the discoveries, some of which date back 9,000 years.
The 41-year-old, who lives with husband Craig and five-year-old twins Luke and Jamie, has launched an online petition and has already collected 300 names.
She said: “The archaeology recently discovered at Didcot has sparked a lot of interest.
“The excavations included a large Iron Age village, ancient Neolithic and Mesolithic camps and other finds (including a late Roman flagon, right).
“With a little imagination these could form a great asset for the town and Great Western Park.
“A walk like the Ladygrove Loop on the Ladygrove estate with information boards could address the history of the site. People could look at the boards and see the locations of where some of these artefacts were found – they shouldn’t just be in a museum somewhere.
“I have spoken to Taylor Wimpey to suggest this and they said some new streets could be given names to reflect the archaeological finds, such as Mesolithic Road or Barrow Close, but I don’t think that’s enough.
“I would like to be able to take my kids over there when they are a bit older and say ‘look what was once under here’. I’ve put a petition online calling for the trail and I’m hoping to get the support of Didcot town council and Harwell parish council.
“I’m not sure how much this would cost but there would be ways of funding it from various sources, including the National Lottery and contributions from the developers.”
Nick Hards, town councillor for All Saints ward, said: “I think a trail would be brilliant – I’m lobbying the developers on this.”
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