AN HISTORIC dig to discover a lost East Lancashire medieval village is set to begin next week.

Survey results from Bluestone Archaeology CIC have revealed a 'strong' indication of a lost settlement in Deer Park, Hapton.

The volunteers of the Hapton Heritage Committee will set about digging four trenches in different locations in a bid to uncover the ruins of buildings and artefacts.

The medieval settlement was first documented in 1193 and it is thought the building of Hapton Tower by Sir John Towneley at the site around 1510 led to the demise of the buildings that stood in the landscape.

Andrew Burn, landscape archaeologist for Bluestone Archaeology CIC, said the survey results had raised the level of excitement.

He said: "It's quite amazing really, because of its age it shouldn't really be there.

"But because the land became a park, it was immune to agriculture and excavation, so it's not been touched.

"From the survey we can see that there is a strong indication of something there, some sort of medieval settlement.

"We just need to get manpower to the ground now and get digging.

"It's very exciting. Everyone cannot wait to get started."

Work will be taking place on the North-facing slops of Hameldon hill on land which once held the deer of the Townley family.

The work will take place for just over four weeks, starting on Thursday, June 1, and the committee have asked for volunteers to lend a hand and get involved.

Committee member Cllr Joan Oakland, who sits on Hapton Parish Council, said the dig could be a real boost for the area.

She said: "It's bringing such a positive look to Hapton, which the village needs.

"We want people, young and old to get involved and be part of the discovery.

"I'm really excited to see what we can find. We will be able to work out what age it is from and learn more about what life was like before ours."

To get involved with the committee, email or call 01282 779690.