Excavation at Birnie near Elgin next month

Archaeologists are to return to an Iron Age “power centre” to further investigate the influence of the Romans on the north of Scotland.

Dr Fraser Hunter, of the National Museums of Scotland, will lead the dig at Birnie, near Elgin, next month.

Roman coin hordes have previously been found in the area.

Dr Hunter said he hoped the work would further uncover clues to an Iron Age community there and the emergence of ancient people known as the Picts.

The archaeologists will look at a number of key target sites in what will be the final phase of excavations at Birnie.

Dr Hunter, principal curator of Roman archaeology, said it had been a “power centre” going back 3,000 years.

He said: “Around the Roman Iron Age it really flourished and was a place with Roman connections.”

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