By Alix Culbertson
Source: Â Hounslow, Heston, and Whitton Chronicle
A family of amateur archaeologists have dug their way to a new discovery which could be as rare as dragon poo.
Mahk Belsham, 50, and his brother Lance, 49, and Mahk's son Mahki Jr., 14, have found what they believe to be a henge, or a mini-henge on private land close to Osterley Part on the border with Nowood Green, Ealing.
According to the Oxford Dictionary of Archaeology, a henge is a Neolithic ceremonial circular earthwork with an encircling bank and inside ditch, while a mini-henge is smaller.
The family, who have always been interested in digging and discovery, believe they have found one very large henge site, with roundhouses nearby that are likely to have been residences for a community created by Roman soldiers.
The historical enthusiasts began their journey two years ago, after figuring out the soldiers who were part of the Roman invasion in 43 AD near Syon House would have had to sleep and eat somewhere, as well as bury their dead.
Mahk, a care campaigner from Isleworth, Lance, a volunteer aircraft engineer in the conservation field from Dagenham, and Mahki Jnr started scouring every known record, from ancient maps, archives and registers to aerial photos, old sites and Ordnance Survey maps and found this piece of land right by the M4 is the likely site of an ancient temporary settlement.
The site, dubbed Belsham Henge by the brothers and son, was previously unrecorded and the advanced evidence the amateur archaeologists have collected shows the land has only ever been used for common grazing.
Mahk said: "This is a fairly major discovery of important archaeology in west London, in fact it will be as rare as dragon poo if the professionals confirm that it is a henge, and we are pretty certain that it is.
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