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Scientists discover human footprints that date back over 800,000 years

Scientists have discovered footprints in Britain that were left by ancient humans over 800,000 years ago. The markings are the earliest such evidence of these types of markings to have been found outside of Africa. The footprints were found in ancient estuary mud at Happisburgh in Norfolk in England and are said to have been left by both adults and children.

Nick Ashton of the British Museum, who led the research team, has said “This is an extraordinarily rare discovery. At first we weren’t sure what we were seeing but as we removed any remaining beach sand and sponged off the seawater, it was clear that the hollows resembled prints, perhaps human footprints, and that we needed to record the surface as quickly as possible before the sea eroded it away.”

The only known older footprints dating back this far that have been discovered  were at Laetoli in Tanzania, at about 3.5 million years old, and at Ileret and Koobi Fora in Kenya which date back about 1.5 million years. It is a significant historical find that can give researchers more information about life on the planet nearly one million years ago.


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