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CAISTER ON SEA ROMAN FORT

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The remains of Caister Roman Fort, which has also been interpreted as a Roman Saxon Shore Fort, are located in Caister-on-Sea, Norfolk. It was built in the early 3rd century and occupied until around 370-390 AD. The fort was nearly 3.5 hectares in size and roughly square in shape.

In 1951-1955 a section of the fort was excavated with the main structures left exposed, including part of the south gate and defences and a main road. The rest of the site, around 90%, is now covered by modern housing.

Inside the current visitor entrance and near to what was the south gate is a large defensive ditch, the innermost of a series of ditches around the fort. The south gate was located in the centre of the south fort wall which stood to around 4 or 5 metres high. To the left of the south gate are the remains of a small, rectangular guard chamber.

Just to the north of the south wall and on a roughly east-west alignment are the remains of a building range more than 45 metres in length and divided into six rooms of unequal size with a wing extending northwards at the western end. Along the south side is a parallel wall which is interpreted as part of a portico and would have served also to retain the inner face of the earthen bank behind the south wall of the fort. On the north side of the building are the remains of a corridor running along the southern and south eastern sides of a rectangular courtyard beyond. This building was in use during the later third and fourth centuries AD and is said to have served various domestic and industrial functions at different times before being severely damaged by fire in the later fourth century. Within the courtyard area are parts of a sequence of other, possibly earlier, buildings which, together with various structures, include the remains of a corn-drying kiln and a tank.

Today (2009) the remains of the fort are opened to the public by English Heritage.

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Further information about monuments may be obtained by contacting Archive Services, through the Historic England website.