Stone Age to Iron Age 13: handy rocks What are these prehistoric artefacts? Where were they found? Expand These prehistoric hand axes were found at Swanscombe in North Kent by Captain North in 1910. Chipped from flint, they were used by early humans in the Palaeolithic (or Old Stone Age) between 400,000 and 300,000 years ago. Hand axes were used to butcher animals, dig for edible roots, chop wood, remove tree bark and throw at prey. They are called hand axes, because they were held in the hand during chopping. Wooden handles came later! Did you know? Swanscombe is famous as a place where fossils of very early humans have been found. What do you think this is? Expand In the 1930s, amateur archaeologist Alvan Marston uncovered prehistoric human skull fragments at Barnfield Pit that became known as Swanscombe Man. Fascinating fact The bones were later found to be those of a young woman, an ancestor of the Neanderthals, who lived about 400,000 years ago, making it one of the earliest human finds in Britain.