Kendal, Lake District A skeleton unearthed by a Victorian archaeologist should give us clues as to when wolves last roamed the Lakeland fells
From my study window I watch jackdaws making their chattering sorties above the rooftops and over Kendal Fell. Across the road a footpath leads up the fell, less well known now as Helsfell, and on through two small areas of woodland. What I can’t see, and hadn’t known until recently, though I walk the area most days, is that deep in the far wood is a cave of significant archaeological importance.
In the 1880s an amateur archaeologist, John Beecham, spent five summers excavating it. He discovered the bones of bear, wild cat, polecat, wild boar and iron age oxen – Bos longifrons, the first domesticated cattle – and the complete skeleton of a wolf. All undated, the collection became dispersed, but the wolf still resides in Kendal Museum, which is having it restored with the help of Arts Council funding].
Source: Guardian Environment