Making headlines by digging them up!
NEWSPAPERS are said to dig up dirt every day but it isn't often that they get dug up themselves – literally.
More than 10 printing plates from the old Grimsby Telegraph presses were discovered underground in mum-of-two Emma Stark's garden in Cleethorpes.
The metal sheets perfectly preserve a snapshot of news from three days in July 1984, including the sports headlines from the time – The Robinson deal is hit on the head – among others.
They were found by Darren Farrar of Handyman and Gardening Services as he removed the flowerbeds from the garden of the Claymore Close home.
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Emma, 25, cleaned up five of the plates using a toothbrush with her two young children, Harvey, four and Alfie, two.
She said: "We thought it was quite strange but really interesting.
"It isn't something you would think you would find in your back garden.
"A lot of people might have just thrown them in the bin or taken them to the scrap metal yard to be weighed but we knew they were special.
"It is nice to think a piece of the town's history was in our back garden."
It is thought the plates are lithographic plates, which were made from tin – the cheapest option for reproducing print on a grand scale and so frequently used in the production of newspapers and magazines.
Back-to-front, they would run through the printing press on drums, inked so that when paper ran over them, pages were produced.
After talking to neighbours, Emma discovered that her house used to be owned by an Arthur Wiltshire, who worked in the old printing press at the Grimsby Telegraph both prior to and during the 1980s.
Mr Wiltshire has since died but it is possible he sneaked the plates home – something that wasn't strictly allowed but happened frequently among printers and reporters – especially when a big news story broke.
He then used the flat, metal sheets as flowerbed dividers where they have remained ever since.
The other headlines from the plates were: "Meggies crash to leader", "Selectors do their sums" and "Bill Muscles."
Emma continued: "Because we know they are not used in Grimsby anymore we thought they could be worth something and mean something to someone. We can't wait to find out what other stories are on them.
"The stories form part of the town's history and now they are part of our house.
"After we have cleaned them up we will put them on the top shelf of the kitchen so they can't get ruined. They are still in very good condition and we don't want anything to happen to them."
The find was also a surprise to Darren, who before now has only found a Roman coin which sold for £12.
He said: "It was one of the strangest things I have found in the garden but it was great to see. They are part of our history and were very interesting."
If you have found anything unusual in your garden call our news team on 01472 372236.