Information for record number MWA9880:
Roman features at Abbey Works, Bleachfield Street, Alcester

Summary A road, hearth, metalworking slag, pits, postholes, gullies, beam slots, ditches,a well, and foundations of stone buildings were recorded during evaluation and subsequent excavation at the former Abbey Works, Bleachfield Street, Alcester. Finds included: pottery, amphora, bone, metal objects including jewellery and glass.
What Is It?  
Type: Hearth, Pit, Post Hole, Building, Beam Slot, Well, Gully, 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

Source Number  

1 The excavation of trial trenches at Abbey Works, Bleachfield Street, Alcester recorded a number of features associated with Roman occupation of the site including a hearth with metalworking slag, 1st - 4th century pottery, amphora, bone and metal pins and a number of features such as postholes, pits and gullies. There is also mention in the report of a road aligned N-S.
2 During a subsequent excavation in 2005, four phases of human activity in the Roman era were identified. Phase 1 dated to the late 1st/early 2nd century AD. features of this included beam slots, ditches and postholes with the possibility that these formed the south west corner of a Roman military fort. Phase 2 showed a clay deposit covering the Phase 1 features, indicating the abandonment of the fort although a well was re-cut and housed in a structure during this period. Phase 3 included stone walls and a stone flag-lined shallow pit (possibly a tank or water cistern), as well as clay post pads forming a rectangular building with an apsidal end. Phase 4 was the apparent end of Roman occupation - a dark soil layer with mid 4th century pottery sealed the site. However some Roman finds appeared to post-date this layer, as did a concentration of inhumation burials and two cremation urns.

Source No: 1
Source Type: Evaluation Report
Title: Archaeological Evaluation at Abbey Works, Bleachfield Street, Alcester, Warwickshire
Author/originator: Thompson P
Date: 2003
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: Report 0303
Source No: 2
Source Type: Serial
Title: Alcester & District Local History Society, Local Past
Author/originator: Greig I (eds)
Date: 2012
Page Number:
Volume/Sheet: 4
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Word or Phrase
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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technique Trial Trench A small regular hole that is usually square or rectangular in shape. Archaeologists dig trial trenches to discover if there are any archaeological remains at a particular location. See also excavation. back
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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monument CREMATION * A funeral rite in which the human body is burnt, usually on a pyre, leaving fragmentary charred or completely combusted remains. Often found buried, occasionally in a container associated with grave goods. back
monument LAYER * An archaeological unit of soil in a horizontal plane which may seal features or be cut through by other features. back
monument CISTERN * A covered tank in which rainwater is stored for use when required. back
monument SITE * Unclassifiable site with minimal information. Specify site type wherever possible. back
monument BUILDING * A structure with a roof to provide shelter from the weather for occupants or contents. Use specific type where known. back
monument INHUMATION * An interment of unburnt, articulated human remains. Use specific type where known. back
monument STONE * Use only where stone is natural or where there is no indication of function. back
monument URN * A garden ornament, usually of stone or metal, designed in the the form of a vase used to receive the ashes of the dead. back
monument FEATURE * Areas of indeterminate function. back
monument BEAM SLOT * A trench dug to contain a sill beam, a horizontal timber beam used as a foundation for the wall of a building. Use wider site type where known. back
monument FORT * A permanently occupied position or building designed primarily for defence. back
monument GULLY * A deep gutter, drain or sink. back
monument ABBEY * A religious house governed by an abbot or abbess. Use with narrow terms of DOUBLE HOUSE, MONASTERY or NUNNERY. back
monument ROAD * A way between different places, used by horses, travellers on foot and vehicles. back
monument PIT * A hole or cavity in the ground, either natural or the result of excavation. Use more specific type where known. back
monument HEARTH * The slab or place on which a fire is made. back
monument WELL * A shaft or pit dug in the ground over a supply of spring-water. back
monument BLEACHFIELD * Large field or yard used to lay fabrics out ready for bleaching. 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 BURIAL * An interment of human or animal remains. Use specific type where known. If component use with wider site type. Use FUNERARY SITE for optimum retrieval in searches. back
monument STRUCTURE * A construction of unknown function, either extant or implied by archaeological evidence. If known, use more specific type. back
monument WALL * An enclosing structure composed of bricks, stones or similar materials, laid in courses. Use specific type where known. back
monument TANK * Armoured military vehicle with its own firepower, which operates on tracks for troop mobility over rough terrain. Some may be adapted, or purpose-built, to be amphibious, and may then be double-indexed as AMPHIBIOUS VEHICLE. back
monument POST HOLE * A hole dug to provide a firm base for an upright post, often with stone packing. Use broader monument type where known. back
monument WORKS * Usually a complex of buildings for the processing of raw materials. Use specific type where known. back

* Copyright of English Heritage (1999)

English Heritage National Monuments Record