Time Team 1066 special: Turks in Crowhurst?

AS well as examining the official battlefield and the alternative site at Caldbec Hill, Time Team also considered the much-publicised theory that the battle took place in Crowhurst.

Presenter Tony Robinson travelled to the village to meet local historian Nick Austin, who first made the claims in his 2011 book, The Secrets of the Norman Invasion.

Nick told Tony that his evidence is based on written material from the period, typography and archeological evidence.

And he added that dowsing had revealed traces of a Turkish-style crossbow on the site - leading him to believe that Turks played their part in the Battle of Hastings.

He told Tony: “You see the guys with the crossbows in the bottom section of the (Bayeux) Tapestry and you look carefully at them and you’ll see that these aren’t Frenchmen - they’ve got big noses and skirts.

“These are Turks. I’m quite sure of it.”

Tony responded that it was the first time he had ever heard the theory of Turks playing a role in 1066.

Weapons specialist Tom Richardson then examined two archeological finds from the area which Nick believed could be a couple of Norman helmet rings.

But Mr Richardson said his instinct was the item was not a piece of armour - but more likely a rusty metal bucket rim.

Tony concluded: “I’m convinced that the battle didn’t happen in Crowhurst, if these finds are anything to go on.”

English Heritage had previously decided not to consider an application to amend the location of the Battle of Hastings to Crowhurst.

However this is currently under review, with a decision due early next year.