A new exhibition of archaeological finds that date back almost 5,000 years has gone on display.

The finds, which were discovered in the Rothley area, in Leicestershire, form part of a permanent exhibition at Charnwood Museum.

They include an object known as the Rothley “Face” plaque, a “unique example of Neolithic abstract art”.

The county council, which runs the museum, said the finds were “insightful”.

Charred remains

The council said the exhibition shone light on a spectacular later Neolithic material culture from the time when Stonehenge was first being built.

Leicestershire County Council Museums recently received the archaeological archive from the University of Leicester Archaeological Services’ excavations at Rothley Lodge Farm.

Other features found at the site, dating back to 2,900 BC, were a large, shallow pit – possibly the remains of a sunken hut – which shows signs of communal feasting.

The area was filled with smashed pottery, hundreds of pieces of worked flint including arrowheads, knives and scrapers, and charred remains of barley.

Another pit contained broken and burned objects such as decorated pottery, roe deer bones, deliberately polished stone axes and a fertility symbol.

Councillor Christine Radford, cabinet member for adults and communities, said: “These findings are extremely insightful in telling us more about prehistory.

“I would encourage everyone to take a visit to Charnwood Museum to see these objects, including the rare Rothley ‘Face’ plaque and flint tools.”

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