AN EXCITING archaeological dig at a solar farm in Haverfordwest has unearthed some amazing discoveries.

Shoals Hook Farm on the outskirts of Haverfordwest is home to 75 acres of solar panels, in six fields, generating 15MW. However, the rows of solar panels are interrupted in one field as a blue rope cordons off an area of land free from any panels or disturbances.

Under this cordoned off land, roughly 100meters squared is a selection of medieval and Roman buildings.

Five medieval round houses are joined by the boundaries of a Roman farm and a communal cooking area.

Jeff Tierney, project manager of the site for CertusPower said: “Before we started the project, a geo-survey of the land highlighted areas where archaeological finds could be discovered.

“Then in March of this year, a team of archaeologists began to analyse the area highlighted by the geo-survey.

“In total we excavated an area roughly 100 meters squared by a depth of 300mm, and it was with this that the team of archaeologists, roughly 40 of them, discovered the remains of the roundhouses and Roman farm.”

Along with the roundhouses and Roman farm, over 40 finds were discovered, ranging from pieces of ceramic pottery and ironwork dated back from the late post-medieval era to glasswork, stone and even a more modern golf ball.

Jeff Tierney added: “The total cost to build this site is £38million, and the company has used local trades’ men and women wherever possible. With 57,000 solar panels generating £85,000 of electricity a day, finding an important archaeological site like this could have spelt disaster. However working with Pembrokeshire County Council’s planning department, we were able to continue the project and protect the site.”

CertusPower are currently working on three solar farms in the area: Shoal Hook Farm, Golden Hill, Pembroke and Crugmore Farm, Cardigan. Shoal Hook Farm has already been producing electricity, and work will be completed there by November. At the peak of construction, 175 people were working on the solar farm, which has a lifespan of 25 years.

In a report written by Phil Poucher on behalf of Archaeology Wales Ltd, he writes: “These features suggest an area of settlement activity of possible Prehistoric or Romano-British date.”

Adding: “In the wider landscape, several sites dating to the Bronze Age (c.2300 – 700 BC) were identified.” and “This area of Pembrokeshire is relatively rich in Iron Age (c.700 BC – c. AD 43) activity, largely in the form of defended enclosures.”