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Fehmarnbelt archaeological investigations start

Survey work to check for archaeological remains along the planned route of the Fehmernbelt fixed link has got underway.

The Museum Lolland-Falster will undertake a survey of a site east of Rødbyhavn measuring almost 2km2 in order to establish whether excavations need to be carried out. The Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde and the State Archaeological Department of Schleswig-Holstein will start examining two shipwrecks dating from the 1600s lying at 25m depth in the Fehmarnbelt.

Due to land reclamation in the coastal area on the Danish side of the crossing, conventional trenches to look for archaeological artefacts could not be used. Instead the Museum Lolland-Falster will undertake the first phase of the preliminary investigation working with Dutch and German specialists to obtain more than 1,600 drilling samples taken at intervals of around 35m. The drill core samples will have a diameter of 70mm and may be up to 4.5m long.

The Museum Lolland-Falster has also formed a partnership with Moesgård Museum in Århus, which will carry out a scientific examination of the drill cores.

The archaeologists are expecting to find traces of the very earliest settlements in Denmark. Early life in Lolland was centred around the coastal areas, where hunters and fishermen had settled. The oldest find yet to be excavated in the Rødby region dates back to 8500 BC.

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