Grime’s Graves - History and Facts | History Hit

Grime’s Graves

James Carson

01 Nov 2021
Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons / Midnightblueowl

About Grime’s Graves

Located in Norfolk, England, Grime’s Graves is the only Neolithic flint mine open to visitors in Britain. Partially excavated in the 19th century, the extraordinary site is now a popular attraction.

History of Grime’s Graves

Grime’s Graves was first named ‘Grim’s Graves’ by the Anglo-Saxons. However, it was not until the site was excavated in 1870 that they were first identified as flint mines which were dug more than 5,000 years ago.

During the Neolithic period, flint was widely used for making polished stone axes. It was later used for building and as strikers for muskets.

On the surface, the monument appears to be grassy structure with many dents. Underneath, however, the monument is large, with at least 433 shafts which were dug into the natural chalk having been identified thus far. The largest shafts are more than 14m deep and 12m in diameter.

Grime’s Graves today

Today, a small exhibition area illustrates the history of the fascinating site. Incredibly, visitors can descent 9 meters by ladder into an excavated shaft to see the jet-black flint.

The landscape is also worth wandering around, since it has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest and a habitat for rare plants and fauna.

Getting to Grime’s Graves

From the centre of Cambridge, Grime’s Graves are around an hour long drive via the A14 and A11 roads. From nearby Norwich, it’s about the same distance via the A11.

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Historic Sites in Suffolk

In addition to its quaint villages and picturesque landscapes, Suffolk is home to a number of fascinating historic sites.

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