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Professor Atkinson, who excavated Silbury Hill in 1968, is excoriated these days by English Heritage for his bad techniques. However, Magnus Magnusson asked him what would be his greatest nightmare during the tunneling (see here, 10 mins in). He replied that it would be if they found something really important because that would mean a delay. Hence he recognised the process must be dictated by the nature of what was discovered, nothing else.

But now it’s 2019 and puzzlingly The Examining Authority at Stonehenge has already retired to consider the evidence, even though trial trenching is still going on in search of evidence! What if some is found? What if Unluckyhenge or other significant features are found (as we mused here)? Are today’s archaeologists (and Highways England) going to say STOP like Professor Atkinson would?

It’s a fair question. Is there a clue in the fact that details of all that they’ve found so far haven’t been published! Shouldn’t it be? And shouldn’t the public be told about everything that is found as soon as it is found? And shouldn’t they be assured that the archaeologists involved in the short tunnel project are both empowered and willing to say “stop” like Professor Atkinson was?

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