News and information about cave archaeology in the Peak District.

Animal bones are frequently found in Peak District caves: in most instances these bones date to the last few thousand years but occasionally the remains of extinct Ice Age animals are discovered. One such find was made in 1878 when a tooth of a woolly rhinoceros (Coelodonta antiquitatis) was discovered by children playing in the streambed of Peakshole Water just outside the entrance to Peak Cavern. Surprisingly, apart from this isolated early find, the extensive Peak/Speedwell cave system has not been very productive of fossil fauna. The purpose of this report is to document some finds of faunal remains made during the last 15 years by cavers exploring different parts of Peak and Speedwell Caverns.

A new collaboration between the National Trust and the University of Nottingham Archaeology Department is examining the archaeology of Dovedale from the Ice Age onwards. Sparked by the discovery of a coin hoard in Reynard’s Kitchen Cave in 2013, we have been investigating what is known from the caves in the area before forming a plan for further study.

We’ll be updating DCA with info as and when we have news, but in the meantime if you’d like to contact the project, please email Dr Hannah O’Regan: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. @palaeohan.