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7th November 2017 - Press Release

DWDR team makes mammoth discovery



The team working on Port of Dover's flagship Dover Western Docks Revival (DWDR) has made a mammoth discovery after unearthing a fossilised mammoth tooth during the excavation of the Wellington Dock Navigation Channel.

The incredible find was made by the principal contractor’s piling supervisor and was being overseen by specialist heritage experts, Archaeology South-East (ASE), who are controlling the excavation at the DWDR construction site.

Kristina Krawiec, Senior Archaeologist, ASE said: “This mammoth find is one of a range of similar finds from the region. It will be subjected to scientific analysis as part of the ongoing archaeological works at the site.”

It's not clear how old the tooth is, but the last mammoths are believed to have walked in Britain over 14,000 years ago.

What happened to the mammoth still remains a mystery, but some believe that they were wiped out by an asteroid which sparked huge climate change. Other theories suggest human hunting was to blame.

Josie Sinden, DWDR Conservation Officer, Port of Dover said: “It's not clear how the tooth ended up in Dover, but some suggestions include it washing down the River Dour, washing up on the beach, used as some sort of structure by previous inhabitants or even purposely placed as a sacred item.”

The ferry services operating between Dover and France are sometimes referred to as providing a sort of land bridge.  The mammoth tooth illustrates the fact the UK was once connected by land to the rest of the near continent across which mammoths and other prehistoric creatures may have once roamed.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

  1. Port of Dover

The Dover Western Docks Revival (DWDR) is a one-off opportunity for the regeneration of Dover, bringing new investment into the area.  With UK Government planning approval and supported by a mix of private finance and European Union grant funding, DWDR will deliver:

 

  • A transformed waterfront to ultimately attract a host of shops, bars, cafes and restaurants with Dover's unique backdrop of the harbour, cliffs and castle;
  • Relocation and further development of the cargo business with a new cargo terminal and distribution centre;
  • Creation of greater space within the Eastern Docks for ferry traffic; and
  • Much needed quality employment opportunities for local people.

 

DWDR is the single biggest investment ever undertaken by the Port of Dover with c. £250m committed for its delivery.

DWDR scored ‘Excellent’ for the CEEQUAL Interim Client and Outline Design Award - the evidence-based sustainability assessment, rating and awards scheme that promotes the achievement of high environmental and social performance in civil engineering, infrastructure, landscaping and public realm projects.

www.doverport.co.uk/DWDR

 

  1. ASE

Archaeology South-East (ASE) operates as an independent cost-centre within the Centre for Applied Archaeology of the Institute of Archaeology at University College London.

 

  1. Mammoth bones in Kent

Mammoth bones have been recovered from several other locations in east Kent, including the Swalecliffe area on the north coast and from deeply buried riverine deposits at Dover. During the construction of the Admiralty Pier at Dover specimens of mammoth teeth were recovered from the sea bed in 1886 and 1898. Another mammoth tooth was found in the 1950’s, during the construction of the National Westminster Bank in Market Square.

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