Archaeologists have struck gold to unearth buried treasure in Carterton.

Experts have been investigating part of a new cemetery in Black Bourton - and have discovered a Saxon gilded buckle.

Archaeologists from the John Moore Archaeological Service made the discovery during a dig on a 30m by 15m area of land at the site.

Pupils from Edith Moorhouse Primary School were among children invited to visit dig to find out about archaeology and the area's history.

Carterton Town Council bought the extra land three years ago and the extended cemetery opened last year. Several burials have since taken place.

Council clerk Tan Marchant said the excavation was being done in a way that would cause minimal disruption and relatives of the deceased had been informed of the work.

She said: "When the council purchased the land, it was required to carry out a trial dig which showed there to be Saxon remains in the area.

"As part of the planning approval the council is required to carry out a fuller dig before than land can be used for graves."

Work on the dig has now been completed.

The new cemetery is expected to provide enough space for burials for the next 20 years, but Carterton still needs extra burial ground.

The town council has been searching for additional land since 1990 and has funding set aside, but Mrs Marchant said it had not had any luck finding anywhere suitable.

In 2001, West Oxfordshire District Council turned down plans for two sites near Stonelands Quarry, off Kilkenny Lane and off School Land in Black Bourton.

Mrs Marchant said: "The problem is that a lot of people don't want a cemetery built on their land or close to it, and it's also difficult to find land that is suitable because of the strict conditions that have to be met."

Witney Town Council had similar problems a few years ago, but was able to purchase an area of farmland off Oxford Hill, Witney, to build a new cemetery the Windrush Cemetery which opened in May 2004."