Unearthing the secrets of Cleethorpes frozen forest
ARCHAEOLOGISTS are awaiting scientific test results on the frozen forest which has been preserved on Cleethorpes coast for thousands of years.
North East Lincolnshire Council confirmed the results of radiocarbon dating of the wood will arrive early this year, determining the exact date of when the trees grew.
They have also done palaeo-environmental analysis of the peat layers.
Starting at the toe of the Wonderland groyne, the stumps of a sunken forest stretch the length of the coastal plain.
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The stumps are believed to date back to 2,000 BC, suggesting the resort's golden sands were once home to rich green oak, birch and alder.
The forest, of which only stumps remain, fascinates local historians not just because it shows a dramatic change in climate and landscape, but because tools relating back to the New Stone and Bronze Age have been discovered there.
The council's archaeologist, Hugh Winfield, said: "Since glaciation, the sea levels have risen and fallen as the climate has changed over millions of years.
"At various times in the past, the conditions were right for forests to form, where we now have salt marsh. There is evidence that people lived there from the New Stone Age to the Bronze Age as different artefacts have been found. Evidence suggests people lived in the area after the woodlands died."
The council advises that people do not venture out to the forest as it's unsafe, but recommend those interested go to the end of the last breakwater where a large section of the forest can be seen providing the tide is low enough. Studies into evidence of fishing taking place and pollen analysis are underway to understand how the population has changed throughout history.