Around 6 kilometres southeast of Mons in Belgium lies the village of Spiennes. Here lie extensive neolithic flint mines worked between 4,300 and 2,200 BC. The mines were only discovered in 1843 and the first excavations undertaken alonmgside railway construction in 1867.
The mines were added to the UNESCO World Heritage list in 2000 but at that time were one of the least visited. When Sub Brit visited in 2003, there had been less than a thousand visitors during all of 2002! Descent at the time was by torchlight down a 40 foot wooden ladder. It was remarkable to see excvation marks made over 4,000 years ago.
Since then a small visitor centre has opened and descents into the workings are still available by prior booking. Surface walks and presentations by archaeologists are also available.