A SUSPECTED Royal Navy chain thought to date back to 1790 is the latest 'relic' to be unearthed at Big Mead pond. 

Councillor Adrian Whittaker, who has been working with fellow volunteers to restore the Shanklin site to its former glory, said the discovery was made yesterday evening (Wednesday).

It comes after a metal detector was used onsite in a bid to locate jewellery thought to have been lost to the pond over the years. 

The chain, Cllr Whittaker says, was found considerably deeper than any other curios — some 45 centimetres beneath the pond bed. 

The original purpose of the chain is not known at this stage. Shanklin Historical Society has expressed an interest in looking at it. 

Cllr Whittaker joked there may be a pirate chest buried deeper underground. 

Yesterday, it was revealed a diverse collection of curios, ranging from a 1950s bus stop sign to a replica samurai sword, were found onsite. 

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A digger had been brought in last week to remove an estimated 300 tons of mud and silt.

Two weeks prior, the community had rallied round to save 152 fish from the pond, which was losing water and starved of oxygen during a heatwave. 

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Just shy of £2,000 is needed to cover the work, and a fundraising page was set up to raise the money.

The fundraising link can be found by clicking here.