York man arrested after human remains found on farmland

Photograph: Richard McDougall

A 72-year-old man from York has been arrested in connection with an investigation into the discovery of human bones on farmland in North Yorkshire.

The human remains were discovered at the remote location near Chop Gate, in the Hambleton district, on March 31.

Forensic archaeologists said the bones, which have been identified as male, are likely to be more than half a century old.

North Yorkshire Police said the arrested man, who is from the York area, has been interviewed and released on conditional bail while inquiries continue.

The force, which is working on the investigation with the Ministry of Defence, the RAF Police Forensic Team and experts from the RAF and the Army, said they are not treating the death as homicide.

Military memorabilia

A police spokesman said work is ongoing at the empty property to remove military memorabilia found in outbuildings.

He said: “It is important to stress that the discovery of historic remains and burial sites are relatively common on North Yorkshire farmland.

“Officers are keeping an open mind until more information is known, but this is not a homicide investigation.”

Police urged the public not to speculate about the case.

Anyone with information that could help the investigation is asked to contact North Yorkshire Police on 101, quoting reference number 12200052953, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.