A number of tiles that have been found at an archaeological dig in Carlisle are adding to a growing base of evidence that could prove Carlisle had a link to the Roman imperial court thousands of years ago.

The first of a growing collection of tiles with the imperator (IMP) stamp at Carlisle Cricket Club in Stanwix, Carlisle was found in 2017 when the Roman bathhouse at the site was first discovered.

In the past week, the team have been uncovering more of these tiles with the "very rare"stamp on them.

"The Romans would quite often stamp their tiles.The legions would stamp tiles, the auxiliaries would stamp tiles; but this is the very top of the pile," said Lead archaeologist on site, Frank Giecco.

"This is the imperial court stamping the tile.

"There have been a handful found in Carlisle at random places.

"We have probably got a dozen now from this site and it looks like this is where they are coming from.

"It's not a legion or anyone else - this is the signature of the Emperor.

"It's been built by the imperial machine and it's a connection.

"I can't say that Septimus Severus ever set foot in Carlisle. Who knows.

"All we can say is that we have got a huge monumental building that has been built in Carlisle. The Emperor was in Britain at that time, we've got an inscription from his wife in the building and we have got his personal workshop-stamped tiles coming from the building.

"The evidence is building up that there is something really special going on here."

The dig at the cricket ground started on Tuesday, August 31 and is part of a heritage project – called the Uncovering Roman Carlisle project – that has recently received a £99,000 National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The funding will help deliver an 18-month programme of community archaeological investigation, exhibitions, and engagement exploring Carlisle’s Roman remains.