Roman bath house discovered under former Jack's store in Colchester

Started by gash, August 05, 2019, 02:44:06 pm

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A PLETHORA of important archaeological discoveries including a Roman bath house have been made during an excavation.

Several historic artefacts, including the remains of what would have been a large Roman bath house, have been unearthed on St Nicholas Road under the former hardware shop, Jack's.

The ancient spa-esque facility, used for public bathing, was identifiable by the discovery of essential components, such as the hollow and ceramic flues which would have lined both the walls and floors of the house's different rooms.

Evidence further confirming the famous Boudican revolt, which caused the destruction of modern Colchester in AD 61, was also discovered.
The finds came as a result of deep digging from the Colchester Archaeological Trust which was carrying out an excavation on the 15th century building as part of its ongoing renovation.

Colchester Archaeological Trust director Philip Crummy said: "We already knew Roman Colchester had a theatre, many temples, a forum, a circus, town walls, a pressurised water supply, and a robust public drainage system.

"To this impressive list, we can now add a major public bath house.

"A lot more work in future will be needed to find out about the layout and development of the building but we can now at least be sure where it stood and where its main heated rooms were located.

"This is an exciting step forward in the exploration of Britain's earliest Roman town."

The cramped underground environment, in which the preserved remains were found, has been deemed too unsafe to allow public access to the site.

The artefacts and materials of the bath house, which would have been located south of the renowned Temple of Claudius, will now be housed as part of a temporary exhibition in the Roman Circus Centre.

As well as the individual, rare discoveries, a life-size construction will also be on display depicting one of the six, three-metre-deep shafts the archaeological trust had to dig. Once the exhibition concludes, the artefacts will be permanently secured and viewable elsewhere in a currently undecided location in Colchester.
The display will open at the Roman Circus Centre on August

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