Information for record number MWA445:
Ryknield Street

Summary Roman Road.
What Is It?  
Type: Road, Ditch
Period: Romano-British (43 AD - 409 AD)
Where Is It?  
Parish: Alcester
District: Stratford on Avon, Warwickshire
Grid Reference: SP 08 57
(Data represented on this map shows the current selected record as a single point, this is for illustrative purposes only and does not represent an accurate or complete representation of archaeological sites or features)
Level of Protection National - Old SMR PrefRef (Grade: )
Sites & Monuments Record
Description

 
Source Number  

1
20 Ryknild Street which runs north from the Fosse Way at Bourton on the Water may have been an advanced section of the frontier line supposedly represented by the Fosse Way, and is likely to have developed piecemeal in the second half of the first century AD. Route can be traced through the county, though topography suggests that the road may have run to the west of the present alignment between the river at Bidford and Wixford.
2 -
3 Cropmarks show the alignment of the road on the north side of Alcester.
4 Located at SP08 57 in section, south of Alcester, its probable course is visible on the map. This route is confirmed by a section seen at SP08 55, revealing flat laid cobbled surface, 0.8m wide; no associated ditches.
5 At this section C (SP08 57) east and west ditches were located and late Romano-British pottery was found. At site K (SP08 57) trial holes revealed a likely surface, but full excavation didn't take place.
6 A section through Ryknield street at SP08 58, in advance of a pipe trench, revealed a Roman road of at least two phases. To the east, a second road diverging from Ryknield Street with ditches on each side of a single surface. ditches for both roads appear on an AP. A few finds (not listed); see WA4712 and WA4728.
7 Another section at Station road (SP08 57) on garage foundations noted a gravel surface at the western edge, with a feature to the east. This was tentatively interpreted as the eastern edge and roadside ditch of ? Ryknield Street. No associated finds (see PRN 7876).
8 Work has shown that there is no connection between the course of Ryknield Street and the present Birmingham road in Alcester itself, where the street runs almost directly north-south. It survives as a trackway between Wixford and Oversley Mill, but the crossing point has been obliterated by later changes to the river, and the course north of the river into Alcester is uncertain - there may be a pronounced kink. In Alcester, excavations have picked up the course of the road at several points and shown the presence of a sequence of surfaces.
9 Repeats the above suggested alternative alignment into the south of Alcester, converging on Bleachfield Street.
10 No evidence of the road was identified in the course of the evaluation (Friday Furlong, Bidford-on-Avon, SP 1000 5270) and it is possible that the current road (Waterloo road) follows the original course of the Roman road. However, the lack of evidence for the Roman road could indicate that its line lay some way further to the west, although this is speculative at present.
11 Possible line of Ryknild street was picked up by an evaluation in 2003 and an observation in 2004 at Alcester Grammar School that suggests it runs along Birmingham road into Alcester. The road consisted of a wide, very hard surface of hard packed medium sized pebbles. A single ditch containing Roman pottery was found on the east side (west side not within excavation). The road had been resurfaced with a mix of soil and gravel, showing in section as a camber. This could represent post-Roman use fo the road. On a direct straight alingment with the last known Cropmark of the road to the north.
12 During an evaluation for the A435 bypass, it was reported that ditch 1001 within trench 10 could indicate the original road alignment. It was however thought more likely to be part of a field system, (WMA10290).
13 Section through this road seen in pipeline trench at c. SP086559. Watching brief recorded "a flat laid cobbled surface 8.5m wide (southern section), 8.0m wide (northern section), the cobbles reaching a depth of 0.7m at the road centre. There were 3 sherds of unglazed thirteenth century (?) ware in the dark brown clayey road matrix. […] There was no evidence of any ditches connected with the road". From description does not appear to be the RB road.
14 The laying of a new gas main through the fields of Alcester Grammar School revealed a section of Ryknild Street Roman road. Several road surfaces and side ditches were located. An original road has been resurfaced twice and had a further road to its E. Of 59 sherds twelve were Post Medieval, 25 Medieval (PRN 5589) and 22 probably Romano British. Amongst the Romano British pot Severn valley wares predominated; also 21 pieces of tile including one piece of flue tile.
15 Watching Brief notes, 7 Station road.
16 Copies of the 1958 excavation plans.
17 Staton road archival material.
18 Five slides from Station road.
19
21A ditch was located during evaluation, suggested as a roadside ditch. Contra
11, the suggested Roman road along the line of the present Roman road may represent a re-routing of the main road, or possibly a secondary road that branched off from Ryknild Street just north of the Roman town, and headed towards its centre on a more direct alignment. The re-cutting suggests a lengthy period of use. An additional Roman boundary ditch was recorded.
 
Sources

Source No: 2
Source Type: Aerial Photograph
Title: SP0858
Author/originator: Pickering J
Date: 06/07/76
Page Number: A
Volume/Sheet: SP0858
   
Source No: 3
Source Type: Aerial Photograph
Title: SP0858
Author/originator:
Date: 05/31/57
Page Number: M
Volume/Sheet: SP0858
   
Source No: 12
Source Type: Archaeological Report
Title: A435 Bypass, Phase 2: Part I, 1992: Boteler's Castle, Archaeological Field Evaluations.
Author/originator: Stuart Palmer
Date: 1993
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 14
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title:
Author/originator: PMB
Date: 1984
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 1
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title: Roman Roads in Britain
Author/originator: Margary I D
Date: 1955
Page Number: 153-154
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 9
Source Type: Bibliographic reference
Title: Birmingham and Warwickshire Archaeological Society: Transactions for 1996 Volume 100 (TBAS vol 100)
Author/originator: D. Hooke (ed.)
Date: 1996
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 100
   
Source No: 20
Source Type: Desk Top Study
Title: A435 Studley Bypass Archaeological Assessment (Stage 2)
Author/originator: Warwickshire Museum
Date: 1994
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 17
Source Type: Excavation archive
Title: 7 Station Street, Alcester
Author/originator:
Date: 1981
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 5
Source Type: Excavation archive
Title: Minutes (Alcester Excavation Committee)
Author/originator: Alcester Excavation Committee
Date: 1964-1972
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 19
Source Type: Evaluation Report
Title: Archaeological Evaluation at 26 Augustus Drive, Alcester, Warwickshire
Author/originator: I Greig
Date: 2009
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 940
   
Source No: 10
Source Type: Evaluation Report
Title: Land at Friday Furlong, Waterloo Road, Bidford-on-Avon, Warwickshire: an Archaeological Evaluation
Author/originator: M Duncan
Date: 2004
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 11
Source Type: Observation Report
Title: Further Archaeological Observation at Alcester Grammar School, Birmingham Road, Alcester
Author/originator: Gethin, B
Date: 2005
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 0520
   
Source No: 18
Source Type: Photograph
Title: 7 Station Road, Alcester
Author/originator:
Date: 1981
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 21
Source Type: Serial
Title: West Midlands Archaeology 52
Author/originator: CBA West Midlands
Date: 2010
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 52
   
Source No: 4
Source Type: Serial
Title: TBAS vol 76 (1958)
Author/originator: Birmingham Archaeological Society
Date: 1960
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 76
   
Source No: 8
Source Type: Serial
Title: TBAS vol 92 (1982)
Author/originator: Birmingham and Warwickshire Archaeology Society
Date: 1988
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 92
   
Source No: 16
Source Type: Unpublished document
Title: Hughes' Site C: photocopies of original plan and section
Author/originator: Hughes, H V
Date: 1958
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 6
Source Type: Unpublished document
Title: Roman Alcester Site List
Author/originator: Booth P M
Date: Unknown
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: Site 62
   
Source No: 7
Source Type: Unpublished document
Title: Roman Alcester Site List
Author/originator: Booth P M
Date: Unknown
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: Site 68
   
Source No: 13
Source Type: Watching Brief Report
Title: Watching Brief on water pipeline trench, Oversley Parish, Alcester, Warwickshire
Author/originator: Ford, D
Date: 1977
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Source No: 15
Source Type: Watching Brief Report
Title: WB at 7 Station Road, Alcester, 15-16 Oct, 1981
Author/originator: Booth, P M
Date: 1982
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet:
   
Images:  
There are no images associated with this record.  
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Glossary

 
Word or Phrase
Description  
source TBAS Transactions of the Birmingham and Warwickshire Archaeological Society is a journal produced by the society annually. It contains articles about archaeological field work that has taken place in Birmingham and Warwickshire in previous years. Copies of the journal are kept by the Warwickshire Sites and Monuments Record. back
technique Cropmark Cropmarks appear as light and dark marks in growing and ripening crops. These marks relate to differences in the soil below. For example, parched lines of grass may indicate stone walls. Crops that grow over stone features often ripen more quickly and are shorter than the surrounding crop. This is because there is less moisture in the soil where the wall lies.

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technique excavation Archaeologists excavate sites so that they can find information and recover archaeological materials before they are destroyed by erosion, construction or changes in land-use.

Depending on how complicated and widespread the archaeological deposits are, excavation can be done by hand or with heavy machinery. Archaeologists may excavate a site in a number of ways; either by open area excavation, by digging a test pit or a trial trench.
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period Roman About 43 AD to 409 AD (the 1st century AD to the 5th century AD)

The Roman period comes after the Iron Age and before the Saxon period.

The Roman period in Britain began in 43 AD when a Roman commander called Aulus Plautius invaded the south coast, near Kent. There were a series of skirmishes with the native Britons, who were defeated. In the months that followed, more Roman troops arrived and slowly moved westwards and northwards.
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period Medieval 1066 AD to 1539 AD (the 11th century AD to the 16th century AD)

The medieval period comes after the Saxon period and before the post medieval period.

The Medieval period begins in 1066 AD.
This was the year that the Normans, led by William the Conqueror (1066 – 1087), invaded England and defeated Harold Godwinson at the Battle of Hastings in East Sussex.
The Medieval period includes the first half of the Tudor period (1485 – 1603 AD), when the Tudor family reigned in England and eventually in Scotland too.

The end of the Medieval period is marked by Henry VIII’s (1509 – 1547) order for the Dissolution of the Monasteries in the years running up to 1539 AD. The whole of this period is sometimes called the Middle Ages.
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period Post Medieval About 1540 AD to 1750 AD (the 16th century AD to the 18th century AD)

The Post Medieval period comes after the medieval period and before the Imperial period.

This period covers the second half of the reign of the Tudors (1485 – 1603), the reign of the Stuarts (1603 – 1702) and the beginning of the reign of the Hannoverians (1714 – 1836).
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monument SITE * Unclassifiable site with minimal information. Specify site type wherever possible. back
monument HARD * A firm beach or foreshore used for landing and loading of ships and other vessels. In more recent times hards have been reinforced with concrete. back
monument GRAMMAR SCHOOL * A school founded in or before the 16th century, for teaching Latin, later becoming a secondary school teaching languages, history, science, etc. back
monument MILL * A factory used for processing raw materials. Use more specific mill type where known. See also TEXTILE MILL, for more narrow terms. back
monument FEATURE * Areas of indeterminate function. back
monument FLUE * A passageway, duct or pipe use for the conveyance of heat, gasses, smoke or air. back
monument DRIVE * A road/carriage way giving access from the main road to the house, stables. back
monument ROAD * A way between different places, used by horses, travellers on foot and vehicles. back
monument BOUNDARY DITCH * A ditch that indicates the limit of an area or a piece of land. back
monument CASTLE * A fortress and dwelling, usually medieval in origin, and often consisting of a keep, curtain wall and towers etc. back
monument FIELD * An area of land, often enclosed, used for cultivation or the grazing of livestock. back
monument FIELD SYSTEM * A group or complex of fields which appear to form a coherent whole. Use more specific type where known. back
monument BLEACHFIELD * Large field or yard used to lay fabrics out ready for bleaching. back
monument TRENCH * An excavation used as a means of concealment, protection or both. back
monument DITCH * A long and narrow hollow or trench dug in the ground, often used to carry water though it may be dry for much of the year. back
monument CAMBER * Traditionally a dock where cambering, the bending of beams for shipbuilding, took place. Now used for a small dock. back
monument PIPELINE * A conduit or pipes, used primarily for conveying petroleum from oil wells to a refinery, or for supplying water to a town or district, etc. back
monument TRACKWAY * A pathway, not necessarily designed as such, beaten down by the feet of travellers. back
monument TOWN * An assemblage of public and private buildings, larger than a village and having more complete and independent local government. back
monument GARAGE * Use only for buildings which house motor vehicles. Includes garages for vehicle repair. For petrol sales use PETROL STATION. back

* Copyright of English Heritage (1999)

English Heritage National Monuments Record