Archaeology South-East


Giant stone artefacts found on rare Ice Age site in Kent

7 July 2023

Researchers at Archaeology South-East, part of the UCL Institute of Archaeology, have discovered some of the largest early prehistoric stone tools in Britain - including the third largest ever found!

Photograph of the largest giant handaxe taken from four different angles. It is roughly teardrop shaped with a point at one end and a flatter curve at the other. It is made of an orangey yellow stone. It is just under 30cm long.

Some 800 stone tools were recovered during excavations in Kent, which were comissioned in advance of development of the Maritime Academy School in Frindsbury. Amongst the unearthed artefacts were two extremely large flint knives described as “giant handaxes”, dating from around 300,000 years ago. These mysterious stone tools are still being analysed, and we're hoping to better understand their function, the people who made them, and the site that they were found on in the future.

Read the full story from UCL News

Read the Open Access paper in Internet Archaeology

See the 3D model of the giant handaxe