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Young archaeologists uncover Farnley Tyas WW2 plane crash evidence

YOUNG archaeologists have uncovered evidence of a World War Two tragedy in Huddersfield.

Kirklees Young Archaeologists Club (YAC) took part in a dig at the site where a Wellington bomber crashed in February 1942 near Farnley Tyas.

It’s thought that the aircraft was making its way home, when it flew off course and descended into the hilly ground around the village.

The plane is reported to have crashed into the roof of a cottage before hitting the hillside and bursting into flames.

Sadly all six crew members were killed.

At least two of the crew members came from Sydney, Australia.

The cottage was rebuilt and is known today by locals as Phoenix Cottage.

Twelve members of the YAC, aged eight to 16, took part in digging on land owned by Farnley Estates.

The group dug three test pits and found evidence of burning in the soil, fragments of burnt Perspex and Bakelite, and small pieces of pottery and brick.

The young archaeologists also found out more about the tragic event by speaking to local people and through researching the event on the internet.

Frances Hobart, YAC Leader, said it was a rare treat to get a real project for the youngsters.

She said: “We previously took part in a dig at Farnley Mill, and have also practiced field walking on land at Farnley Estates.

“Our young archaeologists were delighted to have the opportunity to visit a real WWII site.

“We later analysed our findings and the young people came up with stories about World War Two that they’d been told by family members, which led to a number of useful discussions.

“In all it was a very satisfying dig and, like all good archaeologists, we put the site back to its original condition.”

Anyone interested in joining the Kirklees YAC, who is aged between eight and 16 years, should call 01484 663201.

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