Cutting it fine
This flint hand-axe was found in West Ham in 1905. It can probably be dated to about 300,000bc. It was made and used by one of our earliest ancestors.
Close to the river
Large numbers of such tools have been found in the ancient river gravels that underlie east London. This suggests that the area was once home to groups of early people who hunted and scavenged along the riverbanks.
Though now very worn, the hand-axe would originally have been used to skin and butcher animals and game.
Museum number NN20814