Land earmarked as the site for a proposed new school could contain the remains of prehistoric burial mounds, it has been revealed.

And archaeologists are likely to get the chance to explore what lies beneath the ground before the new primary school is built, should it be given the go-ahead.

A new 420-place school is planned for Silfield, near Wymondham, to tackle a shortage of spaces for children after significant population growth in the area in recent years.

Norfolk County Council has applied to its own planning committee to secure permission to build the school, south of Rightup Lane.

But documents lodged as part of the planning process reveal the likelihood of archaeological remains at the site.

Steve Hickling, the council's historic environment officer, made a submission that measures should be put in place which will mean the site is explored and evaluated before construction starts, should permission be granted.

"The proposed development site lies within an area that has already been subject to a geophysical survey which identified a number of circular anomalies which may be the remains of prehistoric burial mounds," he said.

"Fieldwalking and a metal detector survey in the eastern part of the development area in 1994 recovered prehistoric flints and a limited amount of prehistoric, Roman and medieval pottery sherds.

"Consequently, there is potential that heritage assets with archaeological interest (buried archaeological remains) will be present at the site and that their significance will be adversely affected by the proposed development.

"If planning permission is granted, we therefore ask that this be subject to a programme of archaeological mitigatory work."

NPS Group, which is owned by the county council, and is handling the application, said in its submission documents that: "Archaeological mitigatory works will be required and secured by planning condition, with trial trenching, in line with previous applications in the area.

"The applicant would be happy for this matter to be controlled by planning condition should such trial trenching not be completed before the application is determined."

The need for the new school comes with Wymondham's three existing primary schools already stretched and around 1,500 homes planned or being built in the town.

Norfolk County Council has previously said new housing, coupled with in-year admissions from children moving to the area is "a cause for concern".