FOUR teenage friends have been nicknamed The Goonies after digging up a prehistoric human skeleton while playing on sand dunes.
The pals unearthed two leg bones, part of a pelvis, a ribcage, a spine and a jawbone in the dunes between Hartlepool Golf Club and Crimdon Dene.
It prompted pals to dub them The Goonies, after the 80s film favourite featuring friends who embark on an adventure after finding a pirate treasure map.
Police are investigating the discovery, which archaeologists have now revealed to be a prehistoric burial, probably several thousands of years old.
The site has since been inspected by Tees Archaeology, who have found the burial is of a person lying on their side.
Teenagers Michael Harris, Sophie Miller, Nicola Croft and Aaron Parsley were shocked to discover the human remains.
They told how they initially thought they had found a dog bone and assumed the skeleton’s kneecap was a skimming stone before further digging led them to the reality of what they had found.
Aaron, 14, of Peterlee, said: “We just thought it was a dog bone and thought nothing of it.
“When we found the ribcage we all just started screaming.”
Archaeologist Rachel Grahame said the crouched position of the body and lack of grave suggests this was a prehistoric burial.